UPDATE 12/8/2021

Declawing is now banned in Madison, Wisconsin! In the evening of Tuesday, December 7, The Common Council of the City of Madison unanimously approved Legislative File Number 67344, Prohibiting Declawing Procedures, an ordinance that prohibits declawing cats throughout the city. The measure is now law in the City of Madison.

A huge thank you to everybody who took action to make this incredible, lifesaving achievement possible.

Original Post

Madison, Wisconsin’s capital and second most populated city, could join a growing number of humane, forward-thinking cities in the United States by banning the cruel practice of cat declawing!

On Tuesday, December 7, The Common Council of the City of Madison is scheduled to vote on Legislative File Number 67344, Prohibiting Declawing Procedures, an ordinance that would prohibit declawing cats throughout the city.

If you live in Madison, you can take action NOW and ask your alder to vote YES.

Alley Cat Allies played a role in many landmark decisions to outlaw cat declawing, including the first statewide declawing ban enacted in New York in 2019. We are committed to educating compassionate advocates on the reality of declawing and rallying them to take action in favor of declawing bans wherever they arise.

Declawing was once considered a routine veterinary procedure—but the tide is turning. More and more communities are recognizing that declawing is far from just a nail trim. It is the surgical amputation of the last joints of a cat’s toes and is virtually always nontherapeutic, meaning has no medical benefit to a cat. In fact, declawing can cause chronic pain, trauma, and lifelong damage in cats.

The harm is mental as well as physical. Cats rely on their paws, including their claws, for their everyday behavioral and grooming needs. Their claws help them to defend themselves, and scratching removes dead nail sheaths and stretches and strengthens their muscles. Declawing hinders these natural behaviors, negatively impacting cats’ wellbeing on multiple levels.

Furthermore, humane alternatives to address unwanted scratching behavior are widely available, including scratching posts, spray deterrents, and nail caps.

These are all reasons laws and policies to ban declawing have been adopted worldwide and continue to increase. New York state, 12 major U.S. cities, nearly all Canadian provinces, and at least 42 countries have passed legislation to outlaw declawing for cats and other animals. Several veterinary and major hospital groups, including Banfield, BluePearl, and VCA, have also taken action to ban declawing.

Keep watching our Action Center to see if a declawing ban comes up for consideration where you live.

Learn more about the truth of cat declawing through our Keep Cats’ Claws on Their Paws campaign.