facebook linkedin twitter

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

California Oil Spill Renews Calls to Ban Offshore Drilling

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California has been a leader in restricting offshore oil drilling since the infamous 1969 Santa Barbara... Read More

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California has been a leader in restricting offshore oil drilling since the infamous 1969 Santa Barbara spill that sparked the modern environmental movement, and the latest spill off Huntington Beach is prompting fresh calls for an end to such drilling. That's easier... Read More

September 14, 2021
by Victoria Turner
State and Local Governments Will Drive Broadband Deployment Success

States will be at the helm of the $42.5 billion in block grants designated in the historic $65 billion proposed... Read More

States will be at the helm of the $42.5 billion in block grants designated in the historic $65 billion proposed for nationwide high-speed broadband within President Biden’s infrastructure bill.  The broadband-related funding of the bill itself shows the federal government recognizes broadband as essential as a... Read More

April 22, 2021
by TWN Staff
New Caucus Aims to Bring Main Street Priorities to Capitol Hill

Eighteen members of Congress on Wednesday announced the formation of a new Congressional Caucus whose intent is to ensure that... Read More

Eighteen members of Congress on Wednesday announced the formation of a new Congressional Caucus whose intent is to ensure that the priorities and concerns of cities and counties across America are heard on Capitol Hill. The bipartisan Congressional Caucus of Former Local Elected Officials was formed... Read More

April 16, 2021
by TWN Staff
35 States at Extreme Risk of Partisan Gerrymandering

Thirty-five states are at extreme or high risk of partisan gerrymandering, according to an in-depth report by the nonpartisan RepresentUs... Read More

Thirty-five states are at extreme or high risk of partisan gerrymandering, according to an in-depth report by the nonpartisan RepresentUs organization. The Gerrymandering Threat Index rates all 50 states, and its authors argue their findings underscore the urgent need to pass the redistricting reforms within the... Read More

Plan Afoot to Extend PPP Deadline to May 31

WASHINGTON - A bipartisan bill to extend the Paycheck Protection Program to May 31 is gaining support in the House... Read More

WASHINGTON - A bipartisan bill to extend the Paycheck Protection Program to May 31 is gaining support in the House and the Senate and will likely be voted on before lawmakers head back to their districts at the end of the month. The proposal to extend... Read More

March 2, 2021
by TWN Staff
Cherry Blossom Peak Bloom Date Announced

WASHINGTON - It’s hard to believe it’s almost that time of year again, but on Monday came word that the... Read More

WASHINGTON - It’s hard to believe it’s almost that time of year again, but on Monday came word that the peak bloom for the cherry blossoms ringing the Tidal Basin in Washington is currently expected to occur April 2-5.  That means the most vivid of blooms... Read More

News From The Well
scroll top