The advantages of laser feline declaw surgery include a reduced risk of pain after the operation and less bleeding and swelling. Disadvantages include the high cost of setting up a laser surgical unit and the requirement for veterinarians to learn aspects relating to safety, laser physics and use of equipment, according to Manhattan Cat Specialists.
The laser beam in use during a declawing procedure produces a clean incision and, in the process, coagulates blood vessels, seals them and controls bleeding. The laser seals nerve endings, leading to less post-operative pain, and lymphatic vessels located around the surgical site, which reduces swelling, explains Manhattan Cat Specialists. The laser severs tendons and ligaments, eliminating the risk of a nail growing after declawing, as VetInfo reports. Laser surgery translates to speedier recovery of cats than standard declawing techniques.
A laser machine and the attendant special masks, goggles and smoke evacuation systems cost money, and users of the equipment must train in the relevant techniques and adhere to safety protocols laid down by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, according to Manhattan Cat Specialists. Declawing costs are also high, which may be prohibitive for some cat owners, according to VetInfo. The surgery causes a tingling sensation in cats, which continues for a couple of weeks before the cats' nerves regain functionality, reports the Cat Care Center.