Figure 4

List Content

Panel A shows excerpts from an international discussion of feline declaws, in September 1996:


"I've just walked throught the wards tonite and given analgesia to the declaws that were done today and still have to shake off that feeling of revulsion when I look at their feet." U.S. veterinarian

"In Australia declawing is an illegal procedure and is defined as such under animal protection acts. We also find that we do not have a problem with people complaining about their furniture or anything else regarding cats and their claws." Australian veterinarian

"I find cat declawing, ear cropping etc. etc a barbaric and completely unnecessary procedure and would never do them even if it was legal here." United Kingdom veterinarian

"Dr. Newton's posting on cat declaws arrived a few days after I had a conversation about this subject with a Scottish veterinary student who has been a visiting student at Tufts. He was, as is every British, Australian, and European veterinarian I have talked with about the subject, aghast at the fact that declawing is even legal in the U.S., much less accepted by many in the profession." U.S. veterinary ethics professor

"These procedures are illegal in Sweden too" Swedish veterinarian

"Declawing of cats is illegal in Finland too (as is devocalisation, ear cropping and recently tail docking too). I don't think that any cat owner in Finland would ever even think of the choise to declaw their pet." Finnish veterinarian

"A rotten thing to do to a wonderful animal. When I left veterinary school I resolved to perform this procedure ONLY when it was the only way a cat could have a home. But in practice I soon discovered that my questioning of clients to determine if this were the case became more and more cursory as I became more and more busy." U.S. veterinarian

"I would say that a declawed cat is a healthy cat [in my area/practice; obvious biases included in the observation]. Because of this, I will declaw cats for owners who convince me the cat will be remain indoors after the surgery." U.S. veterinarian

"The practice is so common in the USA that it is difficult to discern where it came from. My sister routinely has her cats declawed - just figures that is how they ought to be. ... My point is: I cannot determine if the veterinary profession or popular lay beliefs have a stronger role in the continuing notion in the US that declaw surgery is an acceptable practice. I make no arguments for doing the surgery, but I also end up doing it from time to time, because I work in a practice that does it." U.S. veterinarian

Panel B shows a sample of recent topics on the VETPLUS-L list.

TopicMsgsDates
Treatment of Dominance Aggression in Dogs146/23-6/25/98
Mail Order Sales of Advantage¨: Pricing and Policies106/20-6/25/98
Surgical Repair of Fractured Femur in a 1 mo old Rabbit36/25/98
Ivermectin Toxicity in a Dog (Equine Paste Wormer); Includes summary
of "Wow - 10 responses within an hour"
36/25/98
Biopsy Interpretation: Palatine Ulcers in a Cat36/25-6/28/98
Treatment Recommendations for Intestinal Carcinoma56/27/98
Frontline¨: Pregnant Humans and Liability96/29-7/1/98
Bone Biopsy Methods (Osteosarcoma Confirmation)56/30-7/1/98
Hind Limb Amputation in a Rabbit (SCC Treatment)37/1/98
Eel Protozoal Infections27/2/98
Differential List for Canine Epistaxis77/3-7/4/98
Speculation on the Cause of Feline Hyperthyroidism207/5-7/9/98

Panel C shows the number of messages per month, and the cumulative size of the VETPLUS-L medical archives. Very few messages (< 5%) are devoid of veterinary content (such as administrative requests, personal notes, and "me too" messages).



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