Declawing – Annotated Reference List

August 2, 2011
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1.     Ansah OB, Vainio O, Hellsten C, et al. Postoperative pain control in cats: clinical trials with medetomidine and butorphanol. Vet Surg 2002;31:99-103. Medetomidine and butorphanol provided equivalent pain relief up to 2 hours.

2.     Atwood-Harvey D. Death or declaw: dealing with moral ambiguity in a veterinary hospital. Soc Anim. 2005;13(4):315-42. Discussed strategies used by clinic staff to cope with declawing, whatever their feelings about it.

3.     Bamberger M, Houpt KA. Signalment factors, comorbidity, and trends in behavior diagnoses in cats: 736 cases (1991-2001). J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2006 Nov 15;229(10):1602-6. Twenty-two unwanted behaviors discussed; destructive scratching was not one of them.

4.     Bennett M, Houpt KA, Erb HN. Effects of declawing on feline behavior. Comp Anim Pract. 1988;2:7-12. Found that 16% of cats developed house-soiling (4%) or biting (12%) after declawing; more than twice as many declawed cats as intact cats were referred to the behavior service.

5.     Benson GJ, Wheaton LG, Thurmon JC et al. Postoperative catecholamine response to onychectomy in isoflurane-anesthetized cats. Effect of analgesics. Vet Surg. 1991;20:222-225. Morphine and xylazine mitigated catecholamine response; pain difficult to detect and quantify in cats.

6.     Borchelt PL, Voith VL. Aggressive behavior in cats. Compend Contin Educ Pract Vet. 1987;9:49-57. Biting behaviors occured at similar rates in clawed and declawed cats (41% were declawed).

7.     Borchelt PL, Voith VL. Diagnosis and treatment of elimination behavior problems in cats. Vet Clin North Am Small Anim Pract. 1982 Nov;12(4):673-81. Cats may avoid the litterbox if it is paired with an aversive event even only one or a few times.

8.     Cambridge AJ, Tobias KM, Newberry RC et al. Subjective and objective measurements of postoperative pain in cats. J Am Vet Med Assoc 2000;217:685-690. Pain is difficult to detect and quantify in cats.

9.     Carroll GL, Howe LB, Peterson KD. Analgesic efficacy of preoperative administration of meloxicam or butorphanol in onychectomized cats. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2005 Mar 15;226(6):913-919. Meloxicam was much more effective than butorphanol.

10.  Carroll GL, Howe LB, Slater MR, et al. Evaluation of analgesia provided by postoperative administration of butorphanol to cats undergoing onychectomy. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 1998;213:246-250. Routine physiologic parameters were not helpful in assessing pain. Pain scoring charts were somewhat helpful.

11.  Chomel BB, Boulouis H-J, Maruyama S, Breitschwerdt EB. Bartonella spp. in pets and effect on human health. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2004 Apr 15;224(8):1270-1279.  Bartonella is primarily vector-borne; cat scratches are not a typical cause.

12.  Clancy EA, Moore AS, Bertone ER. Evaluation of cat and owner characteristics and their relationships to outdoor access of owned cats. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2003 Jun 1;222(11):1541-5. Owners of declawed cats let them roam outdoors at the same rate as non-declawed cats despite being universally advised not to.

13.  Cooper MA, Laverty PH, Soiderer EE. Bilateral flexor tendon contracture following onychectomy in 2 cats. Can Vet J. 2005 Mar;46(3):244-6. First published report of this complication. Tendonectomy solved the problem, though one of the cats died shortly thereafter.

14.  Curcio K, Bidwell LA, Bohart GV, et al.   Evaluation of signs of postoperative pain and complications after forelimb onychectomy in cats receiving buprenorphine alone or with bupivacaine administered as a four-point regional nerve block. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2006 Jan 1;228(1):65-8. Comment by Fox MW in J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2006 Feb 15;228(4):504-504; author (Hauptman J, et al.) response p.504. Bupivicaine was not only ineffective but caused worse pain than nothing. Authors’ response to Fox’s criticism was that “potential pain associated with a properly performed onychectomy is trivial.”

15.  Declaw update. So Cal Vet Med Assoc Pulse. 2009 Nov:4. Statistics from member survey showed that 95% of cats are declawed to protect furniture, and 76% are declawed before 8 months of age.

16.  Dobbins S, Brown NO, Shofer FS. Comparison of the effects of buprenorphine, oxymorphone hydrochloride, and ketoprofen for postoperative analgesia after onychectomy or onychectomy and sterilization in cats. J Am Anim Hosp Assoc. 2002 Nov-Dec;38(6):507-14. Buprenorphine was the most effective analgesic.

17.  Fowler ME, McDonald SE. Untoward effects of onychectomy in wild felids and ursids. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 1982 Dec 1;181(11):1242-5. Discusses paw anatomy and post-op complications (pain from P3 remnant, growth of scurs, hemorrhage, infection, paralysis, and self-mutilation).

18.  Franks JN, Boothe HW, Taylor L, et al. Evaluation of transdermal fentanyl patches for analgesia in cats undergoing onychectomy. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2000;217:1013-1020. Lameness scores similar between fentanyl patch and butorphanol treated groups, but were different in individual cats pre- and post-op.

19.  Fraser AF, Quine JP. Veterinary examination of suffering as a behaviour-linked condition. Appl Anim Behav Sci. 1989;23:353-364. Discussion of behaviors that indicate the animal is suffering.

20.  Gaynor JS. Chronic pain syndrome feline onychectomy. NAVC Clinician’s Brief. April 2005. Chronic pain in declawed cats acknowledged; author suggests that it may not be noticed for long periods. Increased aggression may be one result. Options given for prevention and treatment.

21.  Gellasch KL, Kruse-Elliott KT, Osmond CS, et al. Comparison of transdermal administration of fentanyl versus intramuscular administration of butorphanol for analgesia after onychectomy in cats. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2002 Apr 1;220(7):1020-4. Butorphanol given q4h for 12 hours only. Assessment by cortisol measurement and pain scores; results similar for butorphanol and fentanyl.

22.  Gordon G, Jukes MG. Dual organization of the exteroceptive components of the cat’s gracile nucleus. J Physiol. 1964 Sep;173:263-90. Details of a special cluster of slow-adapting sensory cells at the base of the each claw that detects the slightest movement, touch, or displacement.

23.  Gordon WJ, Romans C, Evans R, et al. Objective evaluation of the efficacy of bupivacaine, butorphanol, and fentanyl patch after onychectomy using pressure platform gait analysis (abst), in Proceedings. 31st Annu Conf Vet Orthop Soc 2004.

24.  Gordon-Evans WJ, Conzemius MG. Analgesia after onychectomy in cats.  Veterinary Medicine. 2005. Discusses assessment of pain and effectiveness of analgesics; variability in techniques and skill; and a variety of pain management options.

25.  Greenfield CL, Johnson AL, Schaeffer DJ. Frequency of use of various procedures, skills, and areas of knowledge among veterinarians in private small animal exclusive or predominant practice and proficiency expected of new veterinary school graduates. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2004 Jun 1;224(11):1780-7. Onychectomy ranked #14 in common feline procedures, ahead of cystocentesis, FNA, bandaging, biopsy, and CPR, and was estimated to be used 1 or more times per week in general practice.

26.  Grier KC, Peterson N. Chapter 3: Indoor cats, scratching, and the debate over declawing: when normal pet behavior becomes a problem. In State of the Animals III, 2005. Washington DC: Humane Society of the United States. The top two reasons for removing a cat from a household were house-soiling (33%) and biting (14%).

27.  Grommers FJ, Rutgers LJ, Wijsmuller JM. [Well-being–intrinsic value–integrity. Developments in the reevaluation of the domesticated animal] Tijdschr Diergeneeskd. 1995 Sep 1;120(17):490-4. The principle of respect for the integrity of animals leads to considerations and arguments beyond animal health and welfare. This is shown by these examples: declawing of cats, caesarean section in cattle, and laying hens in battery cages.

28.  Hart BL. Feline behavior. Fel Pract. 1972 Mar-Apr:6-8. Discussion of scratching behavior, surface preferences, and behavior modification for destructive scratching.

29.  Hellyer PW. Ethical considerations in the treatment of pain. Vet Forum. 2002 June:38–41. Failing to treat pain is unethical and contrary to the veterinarian’s oath and ethics.

30.  Hellyer PW. Treatment of pain in dogs and cats. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2002 Jul 15;221(2):212-215. Questions why do so many dogs and cats suffer needlessly, despite the improved awareness and treatment of  pain in veterinary medicine.

31.  Hellyer PW, Gaynor JS. How I treat: acute postsurgical pain in dogs and cats. Compend Contin Educ Pract Vet. 1998;20:140–153. Discusses assessment and treatment of post-op pain.

32.  Hewson J, Dohoo IR, Lemke KA. Perioperative use of analgesics in dogs and cats by Canadian veterinarians in 2001. Can Vet J. 2006 Apr;47:352-359. Survey of Canadian vets found that 85% of pets received pre-op analgesics and 30-98% received post-op pain meds; but up to 12% of vets used no analgesia for any surgery.

33.  Holmberg DL, Brisson BA. A prospective comparison of postoperative morbidity associated with the use of scalpel blades and lasers for onychectomy in cats. Can Vet J. 2006 Feb;47(2):162-3. No difference in lameness between laser and scalpel beyond the first couple of days after surgery. Discomfort was observable for 8 days after surgery in both groups.

34.  Houpt KA. Animal behavior and animal welfare. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 1991 Apr 15;198(8):1356-1360. Compared behaviors of declawed and intact cats and found no differences.

35.  Jankowski AJ, Brown DC, Duval J, et al. Comparison of effects of elective tenectomy or onychectomy in cats. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 1998;213:370-373. Comments by Knudson D, and Branch C, in: J Am Vet Med Assoc. 1998 Oct 1;213(7):954-955. Prospective study found medical complications occurred in 24% of declawed cats, and one adverse change in behavior.

36.  Johnson JM. The veterinarian’s responsibility: assessing and managing acute pain in dogs and cats. Part I. Compendium. 1991 May;13(5):804-807.

37.  Ko JCH, Thurmon JC, Benson GC, et al. An alternative drug combination for use in declawing and castrating cats. Vet Med. 1993;88:1061–1065. Promotes combination of telazol, ketamine, and xylazine for declawing.

38.  Lamont LA. Feline perioperative pain management. Vet Clin North Am Small Anim Pract. 2002;32:747-763. Pathophysiology of pain, principles of pain management and review of drugs.

39.  Landsberg GM. A behaviorist’s view of declawing. Proceedings, Western Veterinary Conference. 2002. Cites a 1997 survey from Germany that destructive clawing was the second most common behavior complaint. Only 10% of owners had tried to correct it, with ~60% success, concludes that 100% success is not achievable for all cats.

40.  Landsberg GM. Cat owners’ attitudes toward declawing. Anthrozoos 1991;4:192-197. Retrospective survey found that 70% cats were declawed at less than 1 year of age; ~70% of those were declawed at the same time as spaying/neutering. Many medical and behavioral complications noted; 34% were obviously painful post-op; 33% were still painful more than 3 days post-op; and older cats were generally more painful. Eleven cats (4%) developed or had worsened behavior problems post-op (one litterbox avoidance, ten biting). Only 12 (4%) of owners stated that they would not have kept the cat if it had not been declawed.

41.  Landsberg GM. Declawing is controversial but saves pets. A veterinarian survey. Vet Forum.1991;8:66-67.  Memory-based survey. Estimates that 100,000 cats are declawed annually in Ontario province. 229/230 vets cited furniture damage as the principal reason for declawing. Most (78%) vets would declaw on request. Half discussed alternatives (scratching post, nail trimming, behavior modification); and 34.8% of vets reported long-term complications. In a follow-up study, 115 vets guessed that 50% of clients would not have kept their cats if they had not been declawed. Concludes that declawing is an “effective alternative” for owners “unwilling or unable” to correct their cat’s “scratching problem” in other ways.

42.  Landsberg, GM. Feline behavior and welfare. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 1996 Feb 15;208(4):502-505. Discusses welfare concerns, including environmental enrichment and declawing.

43.  Landsberg GM. Feline scratching and destruction and the effects of declawing. Vet Clin North Am Small Anim Pract. 1991 Mar;21(2):265-79. Scratching is a normal, healthy behavior, and owners are obligated to provide an acceptable surface for this behavior. While veterinarians estimate that 10-75% of clients would get rid of the cat if it weren’t declawed, only 4% of owners made that claim.

44.  Lascelles BD, Robertson SA. Use of thermal threshold response to evaluate the antinociceptive effects of butorphanol in cats. Am J Vet Res. 2004;65:1085–1089. Concluded that butorphanol provided only 90 minutes of analgesia no matter how much was given.

45.  Levy J, Lapham B, Hardie E, et al. Evaluation of laser onychectomy in the cat. Proceedings. 19th Annu Meet Soc Laser Med. 1999;73. Complication rates were generally higher for the laser declaw group in the first two days, but were equivalent thereafter. Negative behavioral changes were more pronounced in the blade declaw group for two days, with less play and willingness to use their paws.

46.  Lin HC, Benson GJ, Thurmon JC, et al. Influence of anesthetic regimens on the perioperative catecholamine response associated with onychectomy in cats. Am J Vet Res 1993; 54:1721-1724. Concluded that pain is difficult to detect and quantify in cats.

47.  Martinez SA, Hauptmann J, Walshaw R. Comparing two techniques for onychectomy in cats and two adhesives for wound closure. Vet Med 1993; 88:516-525. Compared 2 techniques for declawing. Follow-up done at 1 week and 6 months post-op. Claw regrowth was seen in 1 cat at 6 months (however, case reports indicate that regrowth can occur more up to 15 years later). Documented 19% incidence of lameness and 34% of wound dehiscence.

48.  McKeown D, Luecher A, Machum M. The problem of destructive scratching by cats. Can Vet J. 1988 Dec;29:1017-1018. Scratching is a normal behavior, and a scratching post should be provided. However, the authors feel that declawing is not cruel and is a “humane” alternative if euthanasia is the only option.

49.  McMillan FD. Comfort as the primary goal in veterinary medicine. J Am Vet Med Assoc 1998;212:1370–1374. Comfort—a state of well-being and lack of discomfort—has been a secondary concern in human medicine and completely absent from consideration in veterinary medicine, but the author argues that it should be the primary goal.

50.  McMillan FD. Emotional pain management. Vet Med 2002;97: 822–834. Emotional suffering can influence an animal’s health and quality of life as much or more than physical pain. Management of emotional pain include prevention, removing the source, environmental enrichment, distraction, counterconditioning (desensitization), and medication.

51.  McKeown D, Luescher A, Machum M. The problem of destructive scratching by cats. Can Vet J. 1988 Dec;29:1017-1018. Feels that declawing is not a cruel procedure and “cats realize their limitations in a few days.”

52.  Mison CB, Bohart GH, Walshaw R, et al. Use of carbon dioxide laser for onychectomy in cats. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2002 Sep 1;221(5):651-3. Comment by Goldman AL, in J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2002 Oct 15;221(8):1100; author response pp. 1100-1101. After day one, laser and scalpel techniques were similar in terms of discomfort and medical complications. The skill and efficiency with which the declaw procedure is performed, regardless of technique, is the most important factor for outcome.

53.  Morgan M, Houpt KA. Feline behavior problems: the influence of declawing. Anthrozoos. 1989;3:50-53. Declawed cats showed more jumping on tables (~75%) than intact cats (~53%) and more house soiling (~25%) than intact cats (~15%) but this latter difference was “not significant.”

54.  Morgan L. Pressure bandaging technique reduces complications at onychectomy site (in Idea Exchange). Vet Med 1997;92:857–858. Photographic instructions on bandaging.

55.  Neilson JC. Feline house soiling: elimination and marking behaviors. Vet Clin Small Anim. 2003;33:2878-301. Discusses causes and treatments for house-soiling and scratching behaviors.

56.  Overall KA. Clinical Behavior Medicine for Small Animals. 1997. St. Louis MO: Mosby, Inc. (Elsevier Science), p. 55. There are also SA [slow-adapting] cells in the soft tissue at the bases of claws that signal the degree of extension and sideways displacement of the claw [Gordon & Junkes, 1964]. This feature has been totally ignored when the subject of onychectomy [declawing] arises, yet certainly the presence of these cells could be one of the mechanisms for persistent discomfort of “phantom pain” that some declawed cats appear to have. No population-specific prevalence data exist for this condition.

57.  Overall KA. Understanding behavior modification: How to implement it in practice in a practical mode. Proc Am Vet Med Assoc. 2003. Denver, CO. “The first time you may hear of a destructive problem may be when the owner comes in requesting that their cat be de-clawed. Obtaining a handout on scratching (or making up your own) with basic education, behavioral modification tips and appropriate products (claw covers, tape products for furniture, etc.) can be very helpful…I have had people request euthanasia for de-clawed cats, because ‘they can’t go outdoors.’ Better yet would have been to avoid the de-claw in the first place with appropriate client education and behavioral modification.”

58.  Overall KA. Medical differentials with potential behavioral manifestations. Vet Clin Small Anim. 2003;33:213-229. Discusses physical problems that may show up in behavior; such as aggression subsequent to trauma.

59.  Patronek GJ. Assessment of claims of short- and long-term complications associated with onychectomy in cats. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2001 Oct 1;219(7):932-7. Comment by Bozarth R. in J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2001 Dec 15;219(12):1675. “It seems unthinkable that an elective surgery performed on a quarter of owned cats could lack definitive evaluation, but that appears to be the case. The most that can be said about adverse behavioral sequelae to onychectomy is that they remain as hard to dismiss as they are to quantify.”

60.  Patronek GJ, Beck AM, Glickman T. Dynamics of dog and cat populations in a community. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 1995;210(5): 637-642. ISSN: 0003-1488. Survey found that 45% of cats in a community were declawed.

61.  Patronek GJ, Dodman NH. Attitudes, procedures, and delivery of behavior services by veterinarians in small animal practice. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 1999 Dec 1;215(11):1606-11. Although veterinarians seemed unwilling to euthanatize animals for behavior problems solely on the basis of a client’s request, many veterinarians did not routinely inquire about animal behavior and often were not confident in their clinical skills to treat behavior problems.

62.  Patronek GJ, Glickman LT, Beck AM. Risk factors for relinquishment of cats to an animal shelter. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 1996 Aug 1;209(3):582-588. Odds of being relinquish for declawed cats almost double that of intact cats (odds ratio 1:89 to 1.00, range 1:00–equal odds–up to 3.58–almost 4 times as likely). Inappropriate elimination was almost twice as common in declawed (52.4%) as intact cats (29.1%).

63.  Paul-Murphy J, Ludders JW, Robertson SA, et al. The need for a cross-species approach to the study of pain in animals. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2004 Mar 1;224(5):692-7. Animals experience pain. There are gaps in current knowledge of animal pain; more study and a multi-disciplinary approach is needed.

64.  Peterson N. The Law and Declawing. Tufts University. Catnip. 2003 Jul;14-16. Discusses the West Hollywood declaw ban and failed California statewide ban.

65.  Pollari FL, Bonnett BN. Evaluation of postoperative complications following elective surgeries of dogs and cats at private practices using computer records. Can Vet J 1996;37:672-678. More than half (52.9%) feline sterilizations had onychectomy performed at the same time. Recording of complications in the computerized records was inconsistent.

66.  Pollari FL, Bonnett BN, Bamsey SC, et al. Postoperative complications of elective surgeries in dogs and cats determined by examining electronic and paper medical records. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 1996;208:1882-1886. All elective procedures performed on cats over 8 years of age were declaws. Complications recorded for 2/146 (1.4%) cats that underwent elective onychectomy alone, but records were inconsistent.

67.  Rife JN. Deep digital flexor tendonectomy—an alternative to amputation onychectomy for declawing cats. J Am Anim Hosp Assoc. 1988 Jan/Feb;24:73-76. Description of tendonectomy procedure.

68.  Ringwood PB, Smith A. Anesthesia case of the month. J Am Vet Med. 20000 Dec 1;217(11):1633-1635. Description of nerve blocks for onychectomy.

69.  Robertson SA. Managing pain in feline patients. Vet Clin North Am Small Anim Pract. 2008 Nov;38(6):1267-90, vi. Review of pain assessment, pain management, and available medications that can be used in cats.

70.  Robertson SA, Taylor PM, Sear JW. Systemic uptake of buprenorphine by cats after oral mucosal administration. Vet Rec 2003;152:675-678. Pharmacokinetics of buprenorphine in cats.

71.  Robertson SA, Taylor PM. Pain management in cats – past, present and future. Part 2. Treatment of pain – clinical pharmacology.  J Feline Med Surg. 2004;6(5):321-33. Good review of treatment options for feline pain.

72.  Robertson SA, Taylor PM, Lascelles BDX, et al. Changes in thermal threshold response in eight cats after administration of buprenorphine, butorphanol and morphine. Vet Rec. 2003;153:462-465. Use of thermal device for comparing opioid analgesics. Found weak action and short duration of butorphanol.

73.  Robinson DA, Romans CW, Gordon-Evans WJ, et al. Evaluation of short-term limb function following unilateral carbon dioxide laser or scalpel onychectomy in cats. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2007 Feb 1;230(3):353-8. Comment by Hofve J. in J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2007;230(8):1142. Laser-declawed cats were less painful in first 24 hours post-op than scalpel-declawed cats. Ground forces returned to normal more than 6 months after declaw surgery.

74.  Rollin B. Animal pain, scientific ideology, and the reappropriation of common sense. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 1987 Nov 15;191(10)1222-1226. “What is often forgotten is that although assumptions in a given area are rarely questioned–practitioners in the area are too busy advanceing the discipline on the basis of assumptions to question them–assumptions are, in principle, subject to questioning, and are in fact often flawed.”

75.  Romans CW, Conzemius MG, Horstman CL, et al. Use of pressure platform gait analysis in cats with and without bilateral onychectomy. Am J Vet Res. 2004;65:1276–1278. Vertical forces were similar in non-declawed cats and cats declawed more than 6 months earlier. More weight on forelimbs in both groups at 6 months than immediate post-op period.

76.  Romans CW, Gordon WJ, Robinson DA, et al. Effect of postoperative analgesic protocol on limb function following onychectomy in cats. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2005 Jul 1;227(1):89-93. Comment by Hornstein SE, et al. in J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2005 Sep 1;227(5):707. Results suggest that limb function following onychectomy is significantly better in cats treated with fentanyl transdermally or butorphanol IM than in cats treated with bupivacaine topically. Regardless of the analgesic regimen, limb function was still significantly reduced 12 days after surgery, suggesting that long-term analgesic treatment is needed for cats undergoing onychectomy.

77.  Salman MD, Hutchison J, Ruch-Gallie R. Behavioral reasons for relinquishment of dogs and cats to 12 shelters. J Appl Anim Welfare Sci. 2000;3(2), 93–106. House-soiling (43.2%) and aggression (14.6%) are the top two behavioral reasons for relinquishment of cats to shelters, while destructive behavior accounted for only 12% of relinquishments. No association was found with declaw status.

78.  Short CE, Ko J. Balanced, multimodal pain management for diagnostics & surgery. NAVClinician’s Brief. 2006 Aug. Review of multi-modal pain management protocols for dogs and cats.

79.  Slingsby LS, Waterman-Pearson AE. Comparison of pethidine, buprenorphine and ketoprofen for postoperative analgesia after ovariohysterectomy in the cat. Vet Rec. 1998;143:185-189. Compared 3 drug regimens for post-OHE pain.

80.  Smith JD, Allen SW, Quandt JE, Tackett RL. Indicators of postoperative pain in cats and correlation with clinical criteria. Am J Vet Res. 1996 Nov;57(11):1674-8. Found that blood pressure was the best physiological correlate of pain.

81.  Spain CV, Scarlett JM, Houpt KA. Long-term risks and benefits of early-age gonadectomy in cats J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2004;224:372–379. Onychectomy was a potential confounding variable in assessment of early-age spay/neuter.

82.  Spinelli JS, Markowitz H. Clinical recognition and anticipation of situations likely to induce suffering in animals. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 1987;191:1216–1218. Distinguishes among discomfort, pain, and suffering. Suffering includes an element of psychological or emotional distress. While pain may sometimes be unavoidable, the authors argue that suffering should be prevented. Describes various behaviors that may indicate pain, but emphasizes that changes in the individual animal’s own behavior is the most important indicator.

83.  Stanway GW, Taylor PM, Brodbelt DC. A preliminary investigation comparing pre-operative morphine and buprenorphine for postoperative analgesia and sedation in cats. Vet Anaesth Analg. 2002;29:29-35. Despite benefits of buprenorphine over morphine, authors state that buprenorphine has a “ceiling” to the effects at increased doses. Neither drug was considered adequate for complete analgesia, especially for very painful procedures, and even for procedures considered “minor” cats needed additional analgesia.

84.  Staples GE. Decalwing neonatal kittens. Vet Med Small Anim Clin. 1978 Jul;73(7):895-6.

85.  Swiderski J. Onychectomy and its alternatives in the feline patient. Clin Tech Small Anim Pract. 2002 Nov;17(4):158-61. Review of onychectomy techniques, digital tendonectomy, and non-surgical alternatives such as Soft Paws. There are many effective, non-surgical, humane alternatives to declawing.

86.  Tannenbaum J. Ethics and animal welfare: the inextricable connection. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 1991 Apr 15;198(8):1360-1376. Argues that “objective” or  “pure” science is not as value-free as most people think it is. What and how much animal welfare scientists are willing to concede must be defined. There is no value-free boundary of “minimal animal welfare.”

87.  Taylor PM, Roberson SA. (2004) Pain management in cats – past, present and future. Part 1. The cat is unique. J Feline Med Surg. 2004;6(5):313-20. Reviews feline physiology and behavior in relation to pain and pain management; also complementary therapies are discussed.

88.   Tobias KS. Feline onychectomy at a teaching institution: a retrospective study of 163 cases. Vet Surg. 1994; 23:274-280. Fifty percent of cats had one or more medical complications immediately after surgery while still in the hospital; 19.8% developed complications after release.

89.  Tobias KM, Harvey RC, Byarlay JM. A comparison of four methods of analgesia in cats following ovariohysterectomy. Vet Anaesth Analg. 2006 Nov;33(6):390-398. Assessed oral carprofen, SQ ketoprofen, butorphanol, and local nerve block with bupivacaine.

90.  Veterinary Information Network, www.vin.com, accessed 2/24/2011). Claw regrowth after onychectomy noted up to 15 years post-op.

91.  Wagner AE, Hellyer PW. Survey of anesthesia techniques and concerns in private veterinary practice. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2000 Dec 1;217(11):1652-1657. Thirty percent of veterinarians used no pain meds at all; of the others, 70% used primarily butorphanol.

92.  Wagner AE, Wright BD, Hellyer PW. Myths and misconceptions in small animal anesthesia. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2003 Nov 15;223(10):1426-1432. Confirmed weak effects and short duration of butorphanol.

93.  Waran N, Best L, Williams V, et al. A preliminary study of behaviour-based indicators of pain in cats. Anim Welfare. 2007; 16(S):105-108. Post-op behaviors not seen prior to surgery were useful indicators of pain, e.g., “half-tucked-up” position and crouching.

94.  Wells SM, Glerum LE, Papich MG, et al. Pharmacokinetics of butorphanol in cats after intramuscular and buccal transmucosal administration. Am J Vet Res. December 2008, Vol. 69, No. 12, Pages 1548-1554. Buccal transmucosal butorphanol had no effect.

95.  Winkler KP, Greenfield CL, Benson GJ. The effect of wound irrigation with bupivicaine on postoperative analgesia of the feline onychectomy patient. J Am Anim Hosp Assoc. 1997; 33:346-352. Bupivicaine provided no analgesia at all, and in fact cats so treated were more painful.

96.  Wright BD. Clinical pain management techniques for cats. Clin Tech Small Anim Pract. 2002;17:151-157. Review of assessment and treatment of pain in cats; recommends pre-emptive pain relief to prevent CNS hypersensitivity.

97.  Yeon SC, Flanders JA, Scarlett JM, et al. Attitudes of owners regarding tendonectomy and onychectomy in cats. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2001;218:43-47. Longest-term study to date, survey indicated that 80% of cats experienced medical complications, and  less than half had returned to “normal” within 3 days. 33% developed behavior problems after surgery (18% biting and 15% house-soiling)

98.  Young WP. Feline onychectomy and elective procedures. Vet Clin North Am Small Anim Pract. 2002 May;32(3):601-19, vi-vii. Pictorial demonstration of declawing and mass removal using surgical laser.

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