The ARL does not recommend declawing cats, but we do offer alternatives. We have a cat behavior expert who can give you tips on how to redirect any inappropriate scratching your cat may be doing. Having a scratching post for your cat can give them a positive place to scratch, which is a natural behavior for cats.
Unfortunately, declawing a cat can lead to physical, emotional, and behavioral complications - like avoiding their litterbox because it can be painful for a cat to scratch in their litter after they have been declawed.
If you'd like to speak to the ARL's Cat Behaviorist and you live in Central Iowa, call our Free Cat Behavior Helpline at (515) 262-9503, and when the recorded greeting begins, enter extension 311. Leave a message with your name, phone number, and behavior concern and we will return your call.
The ARL's Animal House Store at ARL Main sells a variety of toys and scratching posts to encourage appropriate scratching. The store is open during regular ARL hours, seven days a week.
If you live in an apartment, we also have a list of pet-friendly housing on our website, some of which do not require that cats be declawed.
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