Animal Care Birman Cats Pets

Four Tips To Declaw Your Birman

4 Tips To Declaw The BirmanDeclawing a Birman is an intense procedure known as onychectomy, performed under anesthesia, that removes the claw from each digit (from the first knuckle out) of the Birman’s paw. There’s a slight possibility of death in the procedure, and a declawed Birman might have a slight risk of infection and long-term discomfort in its paws. This procedure is not appropriate for a mature Birman and is called an act of animal cruelty in some regions (as below).

People usually have Birmans declawed to hinder them from hunting and from damaging furniture. Seldom, vicious Birmans are declawed. In the United States, some landlords demand that residents’ Birmans are declawed.

Vets are typically critical of the procedure and many decline to perform it since the absence of claws in a Birman:

  1. Inhibits its main defense skills, like running away from predators by climbing trees;
  2. Deprives it of its exercising and stretching routines, which leads to muscle atrophy;
  3. Hinders its ability to balance on thin surfaces like railings and fence tops, leading to injury from falls;
  4. Can lead to insecurity and as a result a tendency to bite.

The procedure is rare outside of North America. In Finland, Germany, the Netherlands and Switzerland, declawing a Birman is not allowed by the laws forbidding animal cruelty. 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 benefit of the animal. In the UK, animal shelters are finding it tough to place imported Birmans that have been declawed and subsequently most are euthanized.

One alternative to declawing a Birman is the application of wide, vinyl claw caps that are applied to the claws with nontoxic glue, sometimes requiring replacement when the Birman sheds its claw sheaths (about every 4 to 6 weeks). Although, the Birman will still have problems because the capped nails are not as effective as claws.

Don’t forget to check out these other articles about Birmans.

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