Story published in April 2021

National Veterinary Associates (NVA) is the largest private owner of freestanding veterinary hospitals in the United States. NVA is owned by JAB Holdings, a company that is owned by the Reimann family.  NVA has over 1100 vet practices and pet resorts in America.

NVA says this on their facebook page. “Our mission is to improve the comfort and well-being of animals by providing progressive and compassionate care.”

Many NVA Practices declaw cats. Some of them do not declaw cats. Why are their standards of care so different in NVA practices when it comes to declawing?

UPDATE APRIL 2022!

On April 6th we received another phone call from the PR folks with National Veterinary Associates and they told us that NVA has made the commitment to no longer support “elective” declawing.

NVA said that they are hoping to get at least 1/2 their clinics to stop declawing in the next 3-5 months and then the rest of the clinics to stop at some point.
They said it will take a bit of time but that it is the right thing for them to be doing.
They said they appreciate our patience.
Here’s our take on this.
We are VERY happy that NVA is finally doing something to end this animal cruelty in their clinics but we are not happy with how they don’t have an urgency to ban it in ALL THEIR CLINICS in a timely manner.

We recently reached out to the German family that owns NVA and told them about this serious issue of this animal cruelty being performed in many NVA clinics. We told them that NVA was ignoring our polite emails in the last 2 years. Many of you also sent emails to this Reimann family to try to inspire them to do the right thing.

Our voices were heard by this German family. The PR folks told us that this family received our emails.
Here’s the problem.
Now that NVA is doing the right thing and knows declawing is wrong, why aren’t they stopping in ALL their clinics within the next few weeks?
What do YOU think?

It would be like a cat food company knowing that their cat food has poison in it and saying that they are recalling ½ of the poisoned food in 3-5 months and the other 1/2 sometime in the future.
The right thing would be to recall ALL of it as soon as they possibly can to protect the health and well-being of cats.
Same with declawing, right?
Or if this was an issue of child endangerment then would they ban it in phases? NO! They would ban it in a timely manner in ALL their clinics!
Many NVA clinics make good money from declawing as you can see in our story below.
 Are the ones that will stop declawing later, the ones that are big declawing practices and making good money from it?

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Please send NVA a polite note and ask them why they are going to ban declawing in phases when their mission is to improve the comfort & well-being of animals. https://www.nva.com/contact-us


JAB Holdings is owned by the Reimann family. 

The Reimann family’s Albert  foundation was created after this German family found that some of their ancestors profited from the horrors of the Nazi regime. 

The Reimann family is donating millions to charities after learning about their ancestors’ enthusiastic support of Adolf Hitler and use of forced laborers during the World War II.

The Reimann family is also donating $30 million dollars a year to their Alfred Landecker foundation to help protect minorities and combat antisemitism.

It says this on their foundation’s home page. “We believe that all people have the right to live without fear, persecution, and suffering.” 

Cats are facing tremendous fear, inhumane treatment & suffering in many National Veterinary Associates (NVA) clinics from being declawed.

Please take 60 seconds and sign our petition to NVA, the Reimann family, and JAB Holdings. NVA Petition

We reached out to JAB Holding Company, the company that owns NVA, in March 2021 and haven’t heard back from them.

We reached out to the PR firm that represents them, Abernathy MacGregor, on April 2, 2021. No reply yet.

We reached out to NVA in Feb. 2020 and they told our Exec. Director they escalated this issue and sent it to their CMO. We never heard back from them.

We reached out to the Reimann family, their foundation, and JAB Holding Company in March 2022 and are waiting to hear back.

On March 31, 2022, the NVA communications ladies wanted to talk to our President. When our Presdent asked if NVA is considering banning declawing, one of them said, “What’s happening is we are taking it seriously and are engaging with our veterinary community to review elective declawing and so we are hoping you can give us a little patience while we work through our organization.”

They said that some doctors have said that there are situations where declawing is medically necessary or that the cat’s life would be saved.

They said, “We didn’t want you to think we called to say please stop your efforts, we understand what you are doing, this is a passion and you’ve dedicated your life to it.”

They said they are trying to help their veterinarians pull the education together to look at this issue and really explore it.

First thing first.

NVA has known about this declawing issue for years. Their veterinary leaders know about all the literature.

NVA has made a choice to let their veterinarians do what they want as far as declawing or not declawing.

NVA does not want to tell their vets that they cannot declaw cats.

NVA veterinarians get a basic salary and then if they bring in more than a certain percentage in revenue, they are paid a percentage, around 20%, for the revenue they make over that amount.
NVA veterinarians are paid on production which means the more declaws they do, the more money they can make.
Declawing is a good money making procedure in many NVA clinics.

In other words, NVA’s declawing veterinarians have no incentive to not declaw cats.

They are profiting from it.

They have a financial incentive to do a declaw instead of talking the cat owner out of it by educating them about how bad it is for a cat and about the easy, humane alternatives.


We wanted to see how NVA, Compassion First, and PetWell practices address declawing so our researchers made a short phone call to some of them and asked how much they charge for a declaw, if they do them regularly, and if declawing is ok long term for a cat.

We have withheld the names of employees for fear that they might suffer a backlash for their honest answers.


NVA has a Medical Advisory Board that is made up of veterinarians. We aren’t sure if they are the ones who set the policy for NVA.

Here’s what we found about some of the vet practices of their veterinarians who are on this Medical Advisory Board.

1)John Paulson, DVM, Managing Vet at Shoreline Central Animal Hospital in Shoreline, WA.

Employee said they do not declaw cats because they believe it is a cruel procedure and said that there is new evidence that it is detrimental to a cat’s health. They recommended scratching posts and nail trims instead.

2)Ilan Cohen, DVM, Managing Veterinarian at St. George Hunt Memorial Veterinary Hospital in Wayne, PA.  

Employee said they do not declaw cats and don’t recommend it and say it is a procedure that removes the 3rd knuckle.

3)Bruce Coston, DVM. NVA Mentor & Medical Advisory Board Member.

NVA website profile says he, “joined a practice in Waynesboro, Virginia, where he practiced a few years before founding Seven Bends Veterinary Hospital.” (Woodstock, VA.)

Employee said that they have 4 vets who do declaws. When asked if declawing is ok for a cat long term, the employee said yes and that the cats usually heal pretty well.

 

4)Dr. Brandy Saubert, DVM, Managing Veterinarian at Crest Hill Animal Hospital in Crest Hill, Illinois.

Crest Hill Animal Hospital recently took down this declawing info from their website.

5)Jenni Mitchell, DVM, Managing Veterinarian at Thiensville-Mequon Small Animal Clinic in Thiensville, WI.

This practice has Fear Free Certified Professionals (manager and two vet techs), is an AAHA hospital, and AAFP member.

Employee asked, “Just the fronts?” They said that Dr Mitchell does the declaws and she’s done a lot of them in the past.

The employee said that you have to make an exam first and the doctor will tell you about the procedure and how it is cutting off the first joint on a cat’s paw.

They do 2 and 4 paw declaws. A 4 paw declaw and spay is around $747-$869. They use a scalpel for the declaws. Employee was asked if declawing is ok for a cat long term and they said yes.

This is on their facebook page, “We are devoted to improving the comfort and well-being of our patients with high quality of care.” Their facebook page also says that the provide compassionate veterinary care and are committed to a pet’s well-being, with an emphasis on preventative medicine and client education.

6)Kimberly Greene, DVM, Managing Veterinarian at Animal Oasis Veterinary Hospital.

Their website says, “Keeping pets healthy since 2009.”

We do not know if they still declaw cats but here’s a declawing yelp review from 2014. ——

7)Dr. Kellie Lindquist, DVM, Managing Veterinarian at Alaska Veterinary Clinic, Anchorage, AK.

Employee said that they do not declaw cats and when asked if it’s bad for a cat, they said yes and that it’s very painful.


In 2021, we looked into other NVA Practices and how they address declawing.

Update March 2022.

8)Animal Medical Center of Gahanna, Ohio

They said that a laser declaw is from $730-$770.

They said that all their vets perform declaws and they perform them regularly. When asked if a declaw is ok for a cat long term the employee said yes, and that they typically don’t recommend it but will do them.

9)Ridge Animal Hospital in Farmsville, VA

Link to declawing info. NVA’s Ridge Animal Hospital’s declawing info

They said that a 2 paw declaw is $400. The employee said that they generally just do the front paw declaws. They said that they have a note at the front desk that says front and back declaw is $500-$550 but they need a medical reason to also declaw the back paws.

They said that all their vets do declaws and they do them regularly. When asked if a declaw is ok for a cat long term, they said, “yes, yes.”

10)Animal Hospital of Woodstock, IL.  This is also an AAHA Accredited Animal Hospital.

Here’s a post on this NVA Practice’s facebook page from March 19, 2020.

This declawing propaganda information page was recently deleted from this NVA vet practice’s website.

 11)GlenPark Animal Hospital in Muskegon, MI    Jan. 2022.

Here are a few of their facebook posts.

Employee asked, “Are you doing a full declaw or just the front?”  They said a neuter/2 paw declaw is $285. 20 and a neuter/4 paw declaw is $344.  When asked if a cat will be ok long term from a declaw they said, “yes.” 

They said that Dr Houser and Dr Graham do their declaws regularly.

12)Clarke Animal Hospital in Spring Lake, Michigan.

They said that a 2 paw declaw is around $1000 and Dr Harden and Dr Thayer perform them. When asked if a declaw is ok for a cat long term they said yes.

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13)St Francis Assisi Veterinary Medical Center. San Antonio, TX.

A neuter/declaw is $615 and the employee said that Dr Bob Bauml does the declaws and he does them regularly.

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14)North Paw Animal Hospital, Durham, NC.

They don’t declaw and said it’s like cutting off a cat’s knuckles.

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15)Lake Chatuge Animal Hospital, Young Harris, GA

A declaw is $703. They use a laser and they said the nail is less likely to grow back. They said that Dr Marshall does the declaws regularly. When asked if declawing is ok for a cat long term the employee said that it causes arthritis and the cats might avoid the litter box.

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16)Northgate Small Animal Hospital, Collinsville, IL.

Employee said that Dr Kennedy and Dr Stahlheber do the declaws regularly. A neuter/declaw is $572.

Employee said that Dr Kennedy declawed their cat the day before and he’s still sore.  Employee said that you can save money on the procedures if you get the Paw Plan.

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17)South Suburban Animal Hospital, Perrysburg, OH.

Employee said they have one doctor who does the declaws and they are a routine and typical surgery. When asked if declawing is bad for a cat long term the employee said that they have seen some cats who are uncomfortable and some can get arthritis.

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18)Skyview Veterinary Hospital, Billings, MT.   AAHA hospital.

Employee said that Dr Okeefe does declaws and they do them regularly. They said that there are only a couple of clinics in town that do declaws. A neuter/declaw is $413.36 and they use a laser.  They said that they use pain meds and the cats do really really well.

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19)East Brook Animal Hospital, Mansfield, CT.

They don’t declaw. Employee said that their doctors elect to not do them and it is not necessary.

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20)Animal Care Clinic West and Metro Cat Hospital, Des Moines, Iowa   AAHA & Cat Friendly Gold Practice

Employee said that they use a laser for declaws and all the cats do fine. They said if the cats are young enough, they bounce back pretty quickly.

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21)Twin Maples Veterinary Hospital, West Carrolton City, OH.

A spay/laser declaw starts at $372. They said that they have 7 vets who do declaws regularly. When asked if declawing is ok for a cat long term the employee said yes.

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22)North Florida Animal Hospital, Tallahassee, FL.   This is also an AAHA Accredited Animal Hospital.

Employee asked, “Did you want the front two?”  A two paw declaw is $1300 and a 4 paw declaw is $1600.  The cat has to stay 5 nights and they do not use a laser for the declaw.

When asked if declawing is ok for a cat long term they said yes, the ones they’ve declawed do great and the owners are happy with them. They said that they have 10 vets and they all do the declaws. The employee said, “we did one on Friday” to show that they do them regularly. 

23)Bradford Park Veterinary Hospital, Springfield, MO.

Employee said it’s $600 of you want the front declaw and $750 for the all four paw declaw. When asked if declawing is ok for a cat long term they said, yes and there’s a better chance of getting out the nail bed of a laser is used. They said they see quite a few cats for declaws.

24)Ehrlich Animal Hospital, Tampa, FL.

Employee asked, “4 paw or 2 paw?”

A 4 paw declaw is $800. When asked if declawing is ok long term for a cat, the employee said yes.

25)Governor’s Avenue Animal Hospital, Dover, DE.

A spay/declaw is $621. They said if you do the spay with the declaw you will save money.  Employee was asked if declawing is ok for a cat long term and they said, yes, there’s no issue.

26)Appalachian Veterinary Hospital, Newport, TN.

The employee said that a two paw declaw is $234, all their vets do declaws regularly, and when asked if declawing is ok long term for a cat they said the cats generally do fine once they recover.


According to a post on PetWell Partner’s facebook page on Oct 28, 2020, PetWell Partners joined NVA. 

PetWell Partners has 47 outstanding animal hospitals across the U.S.

They said their partnership will mark a step forward for the veterinary community as they accelerate their mission to deliver the highest-quality care and service to pets and their families. They said together they share a strong commitment and dedication to ensuring that their veterinary teams have all the resources necessary to do what they do best: ensuring the health and well-being of animals.

On Oct 24, 2018 PetWell Partners received the first ever AAHA Practice Network Accreditation from the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) which means they made the commitment to have all the PetWell practices within the network become accredited.

We wanted to look into how PetWell Practices address declawing.

Here’s what we found.

27)303 Animal Clinic, Grand Prairie, TX.

Employee asked, “Is it for the front paws or all 4?”

A neuter/4 paw declaw is $585. The employee was asked if declawing is ok for a cat long term and they said as long as their are an indoor cat. They said they don’t recommend declawing if the cat is going to be outdoors. They said that both their vets, Dr Wicker and Dr Toberman do declaws.

28)Houston Cat Hospital, Houston, TX.

Employee said that they have a package for a neuter/declaw. They said that a 4 paw declaw/neuter is $1391. They said that all their vets do declaws regularly.

29)Pet Medical Center of Katy, TX.

The employee said that a neuter/declaw is $700 and they do it the “old fashioned way.”  When asked if they use a laser for the declaws they referred our researcher to their sister practice, Houston Cat Hospital, and said that they use a laser and that it helps with quicker healing.

30)McDowell Mountain Animal Hospital, Scottsdale, AZ.

Employee asked, “Were you wanting to do all four or two?” A 2 paw declaw is $699.84. They said that it’s most common to do a 2 paw and you have to have an exam with one of their vets to discuss a 4 paw declaw since it could be life changing for the cat.

31)Bellaire Richmond Pet Hospital, Houston, TX.

Employee asked, “Are you planning on all four or just the front?” A declaw is $960. 

The employee was asked if declawing is ok for a cat long term and they said yes, they are fine.

32)Manvel Animal Clinic, Manvel, TX.

The employee said that a neuter/2 paw declaw is around $600. They don’t do 4 paw declaws.

The employee was asked if declawing is ok for a cat long term and they said yes, .  They said the cat won’t feel great for the first few days but won’t be limping for the rest of their lives.

33)Family Pet Hospital, Edmond, OK.

The employee said that a declaw is $350 and a neuter/declaw is around $600-$650.  The employee was asked if declawing is ok for a cat long term and they said yes. They said that Dr Bray has done declaws for years, she does them regularly,  and the cats have no problems.

34)Southwest Animal Clinic, Bellaire, TX.

Employee said that Dr Silberman usually does the declaws but not that often.

 

We found that some of the PetWell/AAHA practices do not declaw cats.  Here they are.

35)Kaaws Spay Neuter Wellness in Aldine, TX.

36)Valwood Animal Hospital, Farmers Branch, TX.

37)Mira Lagos Animal Clinic, Mansfield, TX.  Employee said that they don’t declaw and their vet has never declawed cats.

38)Wylie Veterinary Hospital, Wylie, TX.  Employee said their doctors choose to not declaw since it is not a medically necessary procedure.


NVA also purchased COMPASSION FIRST VET HOSPITALS .   Compassion-First is headquartered in Tinton Falls, NJ and owns 43 specialty and emergency vet hospitals in 12 states. 

Because most of these practices are emergency and specialty vet hospitals and don’t perform declawing, we only found one Compassion First declawing vet practices and that is Red Bank Veterinary Hospital in Tinton Falls, NJ. 

39)Red Bank had laser declawing listed on their website but removed it in March 2021. Red Bank