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New Brunswick veterinarians vote to ban declawing, practice no longer available in Atlantic Canada

New Brunswick's Veterinary Medical Association has voted to prohibit cat declawing.
New Brunswick's Veterinary Medical Association has voted to prohibit cat declawing. AP Photo/Mel Evans, File

The New Brunswick Veterinary Medical Association has voted to ban the practice of declawing cats.

Starting on July 1 the procedure will no longer be available in New Brunswick.

With similar bans already in effect across Canada, the New Brunswick association’s decision means that all of the province’s in Atlantic Canada will prohibit the procedure.

READ MORE: New Brunswick vets to vote on banning cat declawing this spring

Declawing is a controversial procedure that Liane Nelson, a veterinarian in Moncton, told Global News last year was completely unnecessary.

Nelson said that it was becoming a common consensus among many vets across the country that there is no proven benefit to declawing cats.

“The surgery itself involves the removal of the entire first digit of the cat. It is not just simply removing the toenail like a lot of cat owners believe. It is an amputation of the entire first digit,” she said.

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WATCH: Halifax vets call for ban on ‘outdated, unnecessary’ declawing

Halifax vets call for ban on ‘outdated, unnecessary’ declawing
Halifax vets call for ban on ‘outdated, unnecessary’ declawing

Nelson said doing so prevents them from expressing a natural behaviour and the invasive surgery is painful and can lead to complications.

“If you think about it on yourself, it would be like removing everything on your hand from the tip of your finger back to your first joint,” she said.

Nova Scotia was the first province to adopt a ban on declawing in 2017. Alberta, British Columbia, and the other Atlantic provinces have since implemented their own bans.

— With files from Shelley Steeves