The bill applies only to elective declawing. It voted 11-0 in favor of the proposal on first reading November 6 after an hourlong public hearing that drew several emotional appeals, with most pushing for the council to take a stand against declawing. In those special cases, Denver will allow the procedure.
City Council member Kendra Black proposed the ban, saying that declawing is a cruel procedure and actually severs the tips of the toes of cats.
Dr. Casara Andre told the council last week that while she opposes declawing as a routine procedure, it can be performed in a way that leaves the pet pain-free and improves the pet-family bond.
Vets say cats who are declawed are more likely to exhibit bad behaviors and eventually cause owners to give up on their pets.
City council members to vote on 'cat declawing' ban Monday evening
This is the first USA city outside of California to ban the procedure, the Denver Post reported. Others said the ban would impact cat adoption rates. Australia, Japan, Brazil, Israel and multiple countries in Europe also have similar bans.
Declawing, or onychectomy, is the operation to remove an animal's claws surgically.
Some argued before city council that the ban would take away options for cat owners.
Veterinarians call declawing a major and often painful surgery.