Declawing is the amputation of the last bone of each toe which would be like cutting off your fingers at the last knuckle. Declawing can cause paw and back pain, infection, tissue necrosis (tissue death) and lameness. Removing claws also changes the way a cat’s foot meets the ground which can cause pain similar to wearing an uncomfortable pair of shoes.
Declawing is illegal in certain cities, including Berkeley. Auryn (named after the Celtic word for gold), a 4-year-old female cat, came to us having been declawed by her owner who failed to provide her the proper medical care to heal appropriately. In addition to the pain, she was also malnourished because it was so difficult for her to move to get to her food. It was clear she was going to need great medical care and a loving foster caregiver to nurse her back to health.
Despite the dire circumstances, her sweet nature shone through, and our volunteers and staff recognized there was something very special about Auryn. We were determined to do everything possible to heal her pain – both physical and emotional.
Auryn needed hospital visits several times a week to make sure her paws were healing. The care included an examination of her feet which would also need to be rebandaged, cleaned, and often re-sutured. This was an incredibly stressful process for her, but even so, she became used to the vet visits. She even started to willingly walk into her carrier when it was time for her checkups! Her foster family was completely devoted to her. In the beginning they spoon fed her and gave her lots of love and cuddle time. She began to get her strength back and to trust people again, which, once fully healed, made her ready for adoption.
We are often called upon to care for pets who have experienced abuse and neglect, and as difficult as that can be, we are also privileged to be surrounded by people who provide the care and resources necessary to save pets like Auryn. She’s now been adopted and is settling in nicely with her new loving family. Your support for our medical, foster, and adoptions programs gave Auryn a new chance in life.