Declawing the Turkish Van is an intense operation known as onychectomy, performed with anesthesia, which eliminates the claw of each toe (from the first knuckle out) of the Turkish Van’s paw. There is a tiny possibility of a fatality in the surgery, and a declawed Turkish Van might experience an increased risk of infection and perpetual pain in her paws. This procedure is not suitable for an adult Turkish Van and is considered an act of animal cruelty in some countries (as below).
People usually get Turkish Vans declawed to stop them from hunting and from damaging furniture. Rarely, vicious Turkish Vans are declawed. In America, some landlords demand that residents’ Turkish Vans be declawed.
Vets are generally negative about the surgery and many refuse to do it because the absence of claws in a Turkish Van:
- Compromises its main self defense skills, including escaping from predators by climbing trees;
- Reduces its exercising and stretching habits, which can lead to muscle loss;
- Inhibits its ability to balance on narrow surfaces such as fence tops and railings, which could lead to injury from falling;
- Can cause insecurity and a subsequent tendency to bite.
The procedure is uncommon outside of North America. In Germany, Finland, Switzerland and the Netherlands, declawing a Turkish Van is prohibited per the statutes forbidding animal cruelty. In many other countries in Europe, it is forbidden under the terms of the European Convention for the Protection of Pet Animals, unless a vet considers such non-curative procedures necessary either for veterinary medical reasons or for the health of the Turkish Van. In England, animal shelters are finding it hard to place imported Turkish Vans that have been declawed and subsequently many are euthanized.
An alternative to declawing a Turkish Van is the use of dull, vinyl nail caps that are adhered to the claws with safe glue, sometimes requiring changing when the Turkish Van loses its claw sheaths (about every four to six weeks). However, the Turkish Van may still experience difficulties since the capped nails are not as effective as claws.Don’t forget to check out these other articles about Turkish Vans.
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