New York a Signature Away From Becoming the First State to Ban Cat Declawing

June 7, 2019 by Dan McCue
(Photo via Pixabay)

New York is poised to become the first state in the U.S. to ban the declawing of cats under legislation that sailed through the state legislature with bipartisan support.

The bill, which would subject veterinarians to a $1,000 fine for performing the procedure, has been sought for years by cat owners and animal welfare advocates.

Its sponsor, Democratic Assemblywoman Linda Rosenthal of Manhattan told reporters after its passages that “Cat declawing is a horrific, yet often practiced surgery that leads to a lifetime of pain and discomfort for thousands of cats.

“Today, though, every cat and kitten in New York state lands on its feet as we prepare to make New York the best state for cats to live in the United States,” Rosenthal said.

However, as of Friday it was still not entirely clear that Governor Andrew Cuomo will sign the bill. A spokesperson for the governor’s office said only that he will review the legislation before he makes a final decision.

Declawing cats is already illegal in a number of U.S. cities, including Denver, Los Angeles and San Francisco. However, no state has ever moved to ban the procedure, which requires amputating a cat’s toes back to the first knuckle.

Among those hoping Cuomo won’t sign the bill are members of the New York State Veterinary Medical Society.

The society has been an outspoken critic of the legislation, contending that there are many legitimate reasons for performing the procedure.

These include instances where elderly pet owners move into an assisted living facility where they may be required to declaw a long-time pet for the safety of other residents. Another may be when a pet’s owner develops a weakened immune system and can’t risk suffering a potentially life-threatening infection stemming from an inadvertent scratch.

The ban the bill puts in place would force the owners in each of those cases to give up their pets.

In a fact sheet it distributed to lawmakers, the veterinary society also contended a ban is unwarranted because “veterinarians are doing considerably fewer declaw procedures” and members of the society are “educating clients on alternative options and discussing the procedure in detail.

“For example, in one veterinary practice located in Buffalo, New York, there are 4,500 active clients, 6,500 active patients, and half of those are feline. In 2015, that practice performed less than 30 declaws, a 50% decrease from 2013,” the fact sheet says.

Under the bill, which passed the state Senate by a 50-12 vote and the Assembly, by a vote of 92-27, veterinarians could still perform the procedure for medical reasons, such as infection or injury.

State News

New Law in New York Requires Pharmacies to Quickly Notify Patients of Drug Recalls State News
New Law in New York Requires Pharmacies to Quickly Notify Patients of Drug Recalls
October 18, 2019
by Dan McCue

A new law in New York State requires pharmacies to inform patients of Class I drug recalls made by the Federal Drug Administration within seven days. Generally speaking, drug recalls occur when the quality or safety of a drug has been compromised. It can be due... Read More

Judge Could Soon Order SC Republicans to Hold 2020 Primary State News
Judge Could Soon Order SC Republicans to Hold 2020 Primary
October 18, 2019
by Dan McCue

WASHINGTON - A circuit court judge in South Carolina heard more than two hours of oral arguments Friday in a lawsuit challenging the state GOP executive committee's vote last month to forgo a 2020 Republican presidential primary. In the end, Circuit Judge Jocelyn Newman indicated her... Read More

Governors Hold Summit on Regional Approach to Cannabis and Vaping Legislation State News
Governors Hold Summit on Regional Approach to Cannabis and Vaping Legislation
October 18, 2019
by Dan McCue

The governors of five northeastern states came together for a summit on Thursday to discuss the outlines of a joint regional approach to cannabis and vaping policies. "This issue is complicated, controversial and consequential. It is probably one of the most challenging I've had to address... Read More

House Committee Headed to Florida for Field Roundtable on WRDA State News
House Committee Headed to Florida for Field Roundtable on WRDA
October 18, 2019
by Dan McCue

WASHINGTON - A House Panel that deals with water resource and environmental issues will travel to South Florida this weekend for a roundtable on infrastructure projects to be considered for inclusion in the next Water Resources Development Act. Rep. Grace Napolitano, D-Calif., chair of the House... Read More

Florida Set to Revise Law on Threatening a Mass Shooting State News
Florida Set to Revise Law on Threatening a Mass Shooting

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — A deranged person in Florida can tell people of a plan to commit a mass shooting and still not face arrest — as long as the threat isn’t written down. It’s an oddity in state law that a school safety commission and... Read More

Census Bureau Seeking Driver’s License Info, Administrative Records Census
Census Bureau Seeking Driver’s License Info, Administrative Records

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Census Bureau wants even more details on American residents, requesting states to provide driver’s license and administrative records to add to a trove of federal data being collected by the agency in its census count. Officials plan to use the administrative records... Read More

Straight From The Well
scroll top