7 things to know about Denver's cat declawing ban


The proposed bill that would ban declawing cats passed unanimously on Monday during a Denver City Council meeting.

The city is the first municipality in the country outside of California to ban declawings.

Veterinarians call declawing a major and often painful surgery.

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9 News reports that during the surgery, all or most of the last bone of each of the 10 front toes is removed, and tendons, nerves and ligaments that allow for normal function of the paw are severed. The Colorado Veterinary Medical Association opposed the bill, somewhat surprisingly, saying it was an issue that should be left up to cat owners and their pets' doctors.

Denver's proposal would provide an exemption when a declawing procedure is deemed to be medically necessary and only if it's performed by a licensed veterinarian who uses anesthesia.

But as the council has considered the ordinance, sponsored by Councilwoman Kendra Black, it also has been met with some pushback from owners who say the pain they observe in their pets is temporary. Declawing bans are also common in most of Europe.

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According to our partners at the Denver Post, eight cities in California have passed similar measures. Others said the ban would impact cat adoption rates.

A ban could potentially lower the number of cats in rescue shelters. However, supporters of the ban say a regulation is needed.

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