July 28th – Santa Monica, California, 4th Annual Film Awareness Festival presented The Paw Project, a documentary created to educate the public on the painful and crippling effects of cat declawing. The mission of The Paw Project not only educates the public on the inhumane practice of cat declawing but it is a persuasive documentary to eradicate the practice of animal declawing surgery in the state of California and ultimately through the United States.
The documentary is a must see and compelling film, which details Dr. Jenny Conrad, founder of The Paw Project with over a decade of work rehabilitating big cats, such as lions, tigers, cougars, and jaguars that have been maimed by declawing. She has been a proactive spokesperson advocating humane alternatives to declaw surgery, and she has been interviewed on numerous television and radio programs to educate the public about the mutilating effects of feline declawing. Conrad has tirelessly supported legislative efforts in California to ban feline declawing, which is a practice banned in many industrialized countries throughout the world.
Millions of individuals, including pet enthusiasts are not aware that declawing an animal is more than just removing a nail. "Declawing is a surgical procedure, also called onychectomy, in which the animal's toes are amputated at the last joint. Most people do not realize that a portion of the bone—not only the nail—is removed. Declaw surgery is usually performed when the animal is a cub. While some felines will have immediate complications from the procedure, it may be many months or years before the damaging effects of declawing become obvious. Declawing may result in permanent lameness, arthritis, and other long-term complications" (The Paw Project). Click http://vimeo.com/47145199 to watch The Paw Project movie trailer.
Declawing is a painful and stressful procedure, which has been outlawed in many parts of Europe and Germany. Even though declawing is not been banned in the United States, there are many veterinarians who view declawing as an inhumane practice, and they will not perform the procedure. Cats without claws are defenseless and many cats will develop as sense of paranoia and neuroses. It is not uncommon for a cat to become aggressive and resort to biting. Numerous of cats will stop using the litter box as the litter is painful to the foot. "Removing claws changes the way a cat's foot meets the ground and can cause pain similar to wearing an uncomfortable pair of shoes. There can also be a regrowth of improperly removed claws, nerve damage, and bone spurs" (HSUS).
To learn more about the practice of animal declawing and The Paw Project please visit http://www.pawproject.org/.