Why Do Cats Knead?

Did you ever wonder… why do cats knead you like a lump of bread dough?  No, it’s nothing to do with your flabbiness… puss isn’t a confused little baker.  Here’s the scoop:

Some folks have trouble with this behavior.  Those claws can be sharp on your leg.  But we strongly recommend against declawing.  A scratching post is a much better option, and you can always clip the cat’s claws, if you are careful.

Why do cats kneadThe PetMD web site has a good article on the subject, as well.   Here’s what they have to say about why cats knead:

If your cat is curled up and kneading your lap while you’re petting him, he’s returning the affection and telling you he loves you right back. Unfortunately, this can be quite painful, since the happier he is, the harder he’ll dig in with his sharp nails. Try placing a thick, soft barrier between the cat and your lap, or gently place him on his back and pet his belly if it gets too intense. However, do not punish your cat for this behavior – he doesn’t realize it hurts. To better ensure the comfort of both you and your cat, make a habit of keeping his nails trimmed, or invest in nail guards to cover your cat’s nails.

How do you cope with your kitty’s “kneads”?  Got any “kneady” cat stories of your own?  Share them in the comments, below!

New York Declawing Ban Stalls; New Jersey Takes Up Issue

Here is a quick update to our earlier post, New York State Considers Ban On Declawing Cats.

Linda Rosenthal opposes declawing
Courtesy NY Daily News

In early 2015, Assembly member Linda Rosenthal introduced bill A. 1297, legislation to ban the declawing of cats in New York State.  Now it appears the bill is stalled, and no vote has been scheduled.  The bill’s Senate equivalent seems similarly on hold.

However, New Jersey now seems ready to take up the cause.  Assemblyman Troy Singleton has introduced a bill – A3899 – which would outlaw declawing surgery in New Jersey.

In most European countries, declawing is illegal or unethical. In Israel, declawing a cat can be punished by a year in prison and a $20,000 fine.  Now, American legislators are working for similar laws here in the states.

American veterinarians recently agreed to classify declawing as an “amputation” which “should be considered only after attempts have been made to prevent the cat from using its claws destructively, or when its clawing presents an above normal health risk for its owner(s),” according to the American Veterinary Medical Association.

Linda Rosenthal with cat
Courtesy NY Daily News

The Humane Society of the US, PETA, and the ASPCA are also vigorously opposed to declawing. They believe the surgery can negatively impact a cat’s ability to walk, and can contribute to paw inflammation and pain. Declawing opponents suggest providing domestic cats with scratching posts, trimming cats’ claws, or using plastic nail caps to prevent furnishings from being damaged.

You can still support Assembly member Rosenthal’s efforts to ban declawing in New York, by signing her online petition.

We will continue to follow the story as it develops.

New York State Considers Ban On Declawing Cats

Declawing comparison - image courtesy of PETA
Image courtesy of PETA

There’s some news out of New York that makes us pretty darn happy here at Carmelkats.  The New York state House and Senate have both introduced bills that would outlaw the practice of declawing cats.

“In most cases declawing is performed as a convenience to the owner,” the House bill’s sponsor Linda Rosenthal, a Manhattan Democrat, said. “I’ve heard so many times: ‘I have expensive furniture! I have nice drapes!’ If your standard is ‘I need pristine furniture,’ don’t get a cat.”

Why is Carmelkats so strongly opposed to declawing?  In short, the results are far worse than any possible benefits.  The declawing procedure is akin to removing a human’s fingertips, up to the first knuckle.

Cringing yet?  Thought so.  There are also very serious health risks to the cat that can result from declawing.   The Paw Project has complete and upsetting details on the surgery.  In brief, the results of declawing can include:

  • Chronic pain
  • Arthritis
  • Infection
  • Abnormal posture and movement
  • Difficulty using the litter box

We will keep you posted as we hear more about the progress of these bills through the New York State Assembly.   Feel free to contact us with any information you may have.  You can also share this post on social media, or leave a comment, below.

Should I De-claw My Cat?

We get lots of people who ask us this question.  The answer is a resounding NO.  Here’s why:

Whole Body Effect of Declawing

We understand about your upholstery, but… de-clawing is just a horrible idea.  The best thing to do is to get or make some sturdy scratching posts.

Feel free to contact us any time, if you have any questions or concerns.