Declawing Problems

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karll

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We declawed our cat's front paws 6 weeks ago and she is still limping and holding one paw up almost all the time. We are looking for advice. (Save the lectures about the cruelty of declawing cats. Iâ€[emoji]8482[/emoji]m not interested. Weâ€[emoji]8482[/emoji]ve done it 4 times before with no problems and its better than having to yell at the all the time or keep every stick of furniture in house covered. And yes, weâ€[emoji]8482[/emoji]ve tried scratch posts, etc all over the house, but cats are cats. Besides, modern declawing techniques are much better and even a few years ago. Unlike the propaganda, there is now no cutting of bones and no suturing. It is done by cutting ligaments and by using glue to seal the cuts. And the notion that a cat with claws but no home is better off than a cat with a home and no claws is simply crazy.)

We have been to two different vets with following results::

1.\tThe problem seems to be the 3 middle toes, primarily on the right foot. The inner and outer seem ok
2.\tX-rays show no problem with bones and there is no sign of infection.
3.\tCanâ€[emoji]8482[/emoji]t feel and sign of remaining glue (which can cause irritation)
4.\tWe have tried Metacam but she canâ€[emoji]8482[/emoji]t tolerate it.
5.\tWe tried Tramidol, which certainly put her in a good mood, but didnâ€[emoji]8482[/emoji]t affect her paws
6.\tLaser treatments also put her in a good mood but its not clear if its helping her paws. (We first tried lasers on our old arthritic cat and it worked miracles for her.)
7.\tThe vet checked with a cat surgeon, and he had no real suggestions other than some new med whose name Iâ€[emoji]8482[/emoji]ve forgotten, Gaba something.

There is the possibility of going back in an surgically exploring but we really donâ€[emoji]8482[/emoji]t want to do that, if it can be avoided.

Is there anything else that I can ,look into
 

AbbysMom

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JUST A REMINDER TO ALL -

Yes, this site is emphatically against declawing.

In this case, the deed has been done and all the declawing arguments in the world are not going to bring this cat's claws back.

IF YOU HAVE NO HELPFUL ADVICE DO NOT POST!
 

3catsn1dog

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The thought crossed my mind that its possible the feeling since being declawed isnt causing the pain to be limping but more the feel of not having the claws there anymore causing the cat to limp. Im kind of equating it to like when your foot falls asleep really badly and you limp and get the tingles...
 

hissy

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Sounds like she might have absorbed the glue which does happen (rare) but it does happen. This causes the stuff to clump under the skin and can cause limping and pain. It won't show in an x-ray either. The one time that I have heard of this happening- they had to do surgery and go in and scrape the glue out.

I'm sorry your cat has to endure this procedure and I understand your stance on declaw, but honestly, you didn't need to sound so angry and defensive in your initial post. Most of us are adults here and though this site is adamantly against declaw, it is still legal here and it does happen. I do have access to several feline specialists. I will email them and ask on your behalf. If I hear back, I will post what they might have to offer.
 
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karll

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Originally Posted by hissy

Sounds like she might have absorbed the glue which does happen (rare) but it does happen. This causes the stuff to clump under the skin and can cause limping and pain. It won't show in an x-ray either. The one time that I have heard of this happening- they had to do surgery and go in and scrape the glue out.

I'm sorry your cat has to endure this procedure and I understand your stance on declaw, but honestly, you didn't need to sound so angry and defensive in your initial post. Most of us are adults here and though this site is adamantly against declaw, it is still legal here and it does happen. I do have access to several feline specialists. I will email them and ask on your behalf. If I hear back, I will post what they might have to offer.
Thanks for your ideas. But it's really rich your claiming that I sound angry and defensive. Gee, why would I sound defensive knowing that "Mr. Natural" crowd was going to rain down rants and invective on me because I don't want to see every stick of furniture in our house shredded and because we don't want our three cats hurting each other when they get into a dispute and wrestling match. We've been through infected scratches and frequent scratched corneas after a fight and its not fun for a cat. Declawing is the only way it's going to work without us having to yell at them all the time and being there to stop every fight.

We have arranged our house to be cat friendly as possible and live with inevitable damage they do with their rear claws, and the waking us up at 5 AM to feed them. We paid $9,000 in vet bills for the last three years of our dear old girl whom we lost last year. We didn't a vacation for three years so that one of us would always be home to take care of her. Everyone has to make sacrifices for humans and animals to get along. Declawing is the only concession we ask from them. For this they get everything - food, shelter, blankets in front of the heat, treats, medical care and a lot of pets. It seems like more than a fair deal for them.

Of course, we didn't want to have her declawed. We tried everything we could think of to avoid it. We care greatly about animals but I like steaks, too. Yeah, I feel a more than a bit guilty about his at times, but sometimes you just have to live with the contradictions. The world isn't perfect.

And yes I'm angry because it infuriates me that there are people and many animal welfare organizations who think that it's better to leave the cats to live (or die) in a shelter than the declaw them and give them loving care at home. It's ridiculous to suggest that our little cat would be better off if we had left her in the shelter living in a small cage, perhaps for the rest of her life than to take her home and to have her declawed. The Mr. Natural crowd is also infuriating in their hypocrisy. Cats are wild animals. If they were true to their beliefs, they would be arguing that cats should not be kept as pets and they certainly should not be kept indoors. They should live in their natural state, freezing in the cold, starving at times, living with pests and disease but with their claws. But you never hear them say that.

Anyway, it's unlikely to be the glue because the new glue does not clump, like the stuff they used to use and the vet can't feel anything. It's not entirely impossible, however, that there is small amount of glue, but it would require surgery to find out. That's what I want to avoid.

Our vet said that she doesn't seem to be in much discomfort. His explanation is that cats can get around quite fine on three legs and it takes very little for them to hold a paw up. This still doesn't explain why she's doing it.
 

stephanietx

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I would be concerned that the vet doesn't seem to be as concerned as you are about the limping, especially if she wasn't doing it prior to the procedure.

I have a cat who's declawed (front only), but she was already declawed when she adopted me. I've since adopted 2 other cats who are not declawed and they all live happily together. Of course, we have to keep nails trimmed, but the declawed girl can bop the snot out of the other two!


Hope your girl is better soon!
 

strange_wings

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Gabapentin. That the surgeon suggested this points to what is going on here. Either the vet goofed the declaw or it just simply didn't heal properly and there's some scaring in there. What your cat is now experiencing is nerve pain, gabapentin is a common drug used to treat it. It has it's side effects, but for the people that have to take it the drug often makes a very big difference in their pain levels. I've not really read anything on it's use in pets for other than seizure disorders, though.

Sadly, nerve pain rarely gets better. Hopefully your cat isn't experiencing any major pain - if so you could end up with a whole slew of related behavior problems over time.
 

hissy

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I am just going to say a few things regarding your verbal attack on me, then bow out of this discussion. First off, it is humans deciding to take the cats claw and usually uniformed humans. I have lived over thirty years with lots of cats inside my house. I have intact furniture and have never had to throw a piece of furniture away because of cat damage. There is a "sacrificial" sofa upstairs that the cats know they can claw to death and they have.

I recently rescued two declawed kitties. One lived a week before having to be euthanized, the other two weeks. They were in horrible shape and had been dumped outside after the declaw because of behavior issues. One was six years old, the other was eight.

If you want to declaw your kitties, that is your right here in the United States, but please do NOT come on this website where MOST of us care for the health and well-being of our cats and get MAD that we do. It is illegal in so many countries have you ever asked yourself why that is? It is also a money-maker in this country for the vets and is often offered (as one astute poster said long ago) "like a side of fries with a neuter." Good vets WON'T neuter they offer alternative suggestions like soft paws and good, solid cat furniture, interactive play etc...

By the way - I received an answer from a vet for you. I will post it here and then I am out of this. You my friend, are not very educated about cats especially if you consider them "wild animals."

I can understand the frustration of the woman with the declawed cat. It's an unfortunate situation. It's also a pretty rare occurrence (thankfully) but that doesn't help her cat. It sounds like there's been a pretty complete work-up done, including x-rays that didn't show anything abnormal. It also sounds like infections and the more usual causes have been ruled out. Assuming that to be true (and I certainly see no reason to assume it is not though I haven't seen the x-rays or examined the cat), that leaves us with neuropathic pain, similar to phantom pain in a person with an amputated limb. Neuroma formation is also a possibility.

Unfortunately, this type of pain can be very difficult and very frustrating to treat. Multi-modal treatments, using more than one type of medication and/or treatment modality, is usually the best approach. Some people have had success using a combination of buprenorphine, gabapentin and metacam. However, I know you said that the poor cat didn't tolerate the metacam when she had it previously. So, perhaps she could ask her vet about a combination of the buprenorphine and gabapentin. Other medications that have been used for this type of pain are amitriptyline and amantidine.

I wonder also if an alternative therapy like acupuncture could help here. I'm not well versed in alternative therapies but this might be something to address toward her vet (if he/she is open to the suggestion) or to a TCVM practitioner. I don't see why a combination of medication(s) and acupuncture couldn't be tried.

I'm sorry I don't have any definitive solutions for you, but hopefully this at least gives the kitty's owner some things to talk to her vet about.
 

strange_wings

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Originally Posted by hissy

Neuroma formation is also a possibility.
I had never really thought about that happening in cats feet - not that I assumed it couldn't, just that I hadn't really thought about it.
Personal experience, if kitty has a neuroma every step hurts and even when not putting weight on it the foot hurts still hurts. They can be difficult to nearly impossible to treat in people.. I can't even imagine what it would be like for a cat.
 

fluffee

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Karll,


We have one that acts just like you stated, keeps one paw up. We got her(she was about 8 yrs old) from my husband's mom when she passed away 2 yrs ago. Out of our 8 cats, she is the only one that is declawed. And she holds her own within our home. Since we have gotten her, watching her jump down or even walking hurts her front paws badly. Is it something that happen when she was declawed or age coming into play I am not sure. I do know Momma, has we call her, holds up a paw as if it hurts.

We do not believe in declawing, but our reasoning is only from personally experiences of having cats someone has declawed and the seeming pain they having walking afterwards.

BTW, we have had our couch now for going on 7 yrs, only in the past year has someone decided it time for it to go(meaning cats..lol). I think I have been "dreaming" it to them to kill the couch so I can get a new one. And I do want a new one.

Remember this old thought,,, dogs are like children, needing 24/7 care. Cats are like teenagers.. You can teach them manners and hope they listen to you during the 18 months of growing up time.

I hope the kitty is feeling better.
 

tigerontheprowl

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It sounds like nerve pain to me. One of many possible complications that can occur from declawing. Karll, can I ask why you declaw? Especially when there are some much more humane methods like Soft Paws.
 

AbbysMom

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This thread is quickly going downhill and I will now close it.

karll, you did come off as rude initially and did in followup posts as well. You stated that you knew you were going to get rained down upon and thus wanted to avoid it, but at the same time you wanted help from people on this anti-declaw site. As the old adage says, you catch more flies with honey than vinegar.

You have gotten some excellent advice from some of our members that you can take to your vet for followup treatment. I really hope that your vet is able to help your cat and that these complications make you reconsider declawing any future cats..
 
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