The College of Veterinarians of B.C. (CVBC) has banned the practice the declawing cats in the province.
The college says it will only be performed if it is medically necessary for the cat to survive.
Nova Scotia is the only other province in Canada to ban cat declawing but it is also banned in Australia, New Zealand, Israel, Brazil, the United Kingdom, parts of Europe and some cities in California.
“There is a consensus among the public and within our profession that declawing cats is an inhumane treatment and ethically unacceptable,” says Luisa Hlus, the college’s CEO, “similar to other outdated practices such as tail docking and ear cropping.”
Under the Veterinarians Act, the CVBC has the power to investigate and impose disciplinary action on veterinarians who ignore this new standard of practice around cat declawing.
The new motion will go into effect as soon as registrants receive notification.
The CVBC says there are medical conditions that may necessitate partial or full digit amputation of some or all digits as an appropriate medical therapy.
This includes biopsy of a nail or phalanx for the purposes of diagnosis or surgery to treat the following:
- Neoplasia of the nail bed or phalanges
- Severe or irreversible trauma
- Immune-mediated disease affecting the nail bed
- Paronychia (inflammation or infection of the nail bed)
- Onychodystrophy (abnormal formation of the nail)
- Onychogryphosis (hypertrophy and abnormal curvature of the nail)
- Onychomadesis (sloughing of the nail)
- Onychomalacia (softening of the nail)
- Onychomycosis (fungal infection)
- Onychoschizia (splitting of the nail)
The college says there are no medical conditions or environmental circumstances of the cat owner to justify the declawing of domestic cats.
WATCH: Nova Scotia bans declawing of domestic cats