Declawing a Siberian is a major procedure known as onychectomy, performed using anesthesia, which eliminates the claw of each toe (from the first knuckle out) of the Siberian’s forepaw. There’s a remote possibility of death in the procedure, and a declawed Siberian might experience an increased risk of infection and permanent displeasure in its paws. This surgery isn’t appropriate for an adult Siberian and is called an act of animal cruelty in some countries (see below).
People generally get Siberians declawed to hinder them from damaging furniture and hunting. Seldom, vicious Siberians are declawed. In America, some landlords require that residents’ Siberians be declawed.
Veterinarians are usually critical of the operation and at times refuse to do it because the lack of claws in a Siberian:
- Impairs its main self-protection abilities, including escaping from predators by climbing trees;
- Inhibits its exercising and stretching habits, which leads to muscle loss;
- Impairs its ability to walk on thin surfaces such as railings and fence tops, leading to injury from falling;
- Can cause insecurity and a subsequent biting habit.
This procedure is rarely performed outside of North America. In Switzerland, the Netherlands, Germany and Finland, declawing a Siberian is forbidden per the statutes forbidding cruelty to animals. In many other countries in Europe, it is prohibited under the terms of the European Convention for the Protection of Pet Animals, unless a vet deems such non-curative procedures beneficial either for veterinary medical reasons or for the health of the Siberian. In the UK, animal shelters find it tough to place imported Siberians that have been declawed and as a result many are euthanized.
An substitute for declawing a Siberian is the use of blunt, vinyl nail caps that are stuck to the claws with nontoxic glue, requiring periodic replacement when the Siberian sheds its claw sheaths (about every 4 to 6 weeks). Yet, the Siberian will still have problems since the capped nails are not as effective as claws.Don’t forget to check out these other articles about Siberians.
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