MICHIGAN (CBS DETROIT) — Lawmakers have introduced a bill that would ban declawing of cats in Michigan.

House Bill 5508 — which is sponsored by Rep. Nate Shannon, D-Sterling — would prohibit declawing or any other surgical procedure that prevents normal functioning of the claws on a cat in the state.

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“Owning a pet is a big decision but abusing an animal and causing them long-term persistent pain to make caring for them easier for the pet owner is unacceptable,” said Shannon. “I want to encourage responsible and ethical pet ownership with this bill.”

If the bill is passed and is violated, an individual would be responsible for a fine up to $1,000.

The ban would not apply if the procedure is medically necessary.

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Declawing cats through a phalangectomy, the procedure to completely amputate the last bone in each toe of the cat — which on a human would be the equivalent of removing the last knuckle from each of your fingers — is far more intrusive and harmful than some people may realize, a press release from Michigan House Democrats stated.

Michigan would join New York as the only states in the U.S. to ban cat declawing, also joining Australia, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, 7 of 10 Canadian Provinces and most member states of the European Union. The bill was referred to the House Agriculture Committee for consideration.

To see the full bill, visit here.

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