A city in Pennsylvania has officially made declawing cats illegal.
The Allentown City Council unanimously voted to ban the declawing of cats on Wednesday, exempting only therapeutic purposes such as illness or infection.
The Associated Press has previously reported on the controversy surrounding the practice, which “veterinarians testified, is equivalent to removing a human’s finger at the first knuckle.”
Many states including Maryland and Delaware have considered legislation that would get rid of the procedure for good, with one bill setting fines up to $5,000 for any first offense. Similar to the motion in Allentown, these bills also highlighted therapeutic purposes as the exception.
Declawing cats has already been made illegal in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Denver. New York followed in their footsteps in 2019, which a separate Associated Press article denotes was a victory for supporters who view “the practice [as] cruel and barbaric.”
“New York prides itself on being first,” stated that bill’s sponsor, Linda Rosenthal, at the time. “This will have a domino effect.”
This is the second pet-friendly action Allentown has taken this year, as the council banned the sale of animals (including kittens and bunnies along with puppies) from mills back in October.
Allentown’s motion to making declawing cats illegal will take effect 10 days after the vote.