A new bill introduced in the Florida Senate would ban the declawing of cats.
"A person may not perform a declawing by any means on a cat within this state unless the procedure is necessary for a therapeutic purpose," the bill filed by Senator Lauren Book says.
Under the bill, a person other than a licensed vet who declaws a cat is subject to a civil penalty of up to $1,000 for each violation.
A licensed vet who performs the procedure is subject to disciplinary action by the Board of Veterinary Medicine. Such disciplinary action could include denial of certification for examination or licensure, revocation or suspension of a license, administrative fines and more.
New York recently passed a declawing law to protect cats as well. They were the first state to do so.
According to the Humane Society, the process usually involves removing the last bone of each toe on the cat's paw . Animal activists claim declawing is a needlessly painful process, and the Humane Society recommends it only in the most dire circumstances, when the health of the cat is affected.