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Paws Project Founder, Veterinarian Jennifer Conrad, and Diablo, a 500 Pound Tiger Featured in a Special Two-Hour Presentation "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition"

The Paw Project founder, veterinarian Jennifer Conrad, was featured on ABC's "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" on Sunday, March 29, in a special two hour episode highlighting the Almquist Family, owners of Forever Wild animal refuge in Phelan, California. Conrad is a Santa Monica-based veterinarian specializing in care of exotic species animals, and owner of Veterinarian to the (Real) Stars, an organization providing support for animal actors in the entertainment industry. The "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" episode captured her attending to Forever Wild resident Diablo, a 500 pound Siberian tiger, whose declawed paws had left the tiger crippled and in excruciating pain.Read Full Story




The Paw Project

The Paw Project exists to promote animal welfare and increase public awareness about the crippling effects of feline declawing, to rehabilitate big cats that have been declawed, and to end the practice of declaw surgery.

The Paw Project initiated efforts which led to the ban on declawing in West Hollywood, CA, the first law of its kind in North America. The Paw Project was also the sponsor of AB 1857, introduced by Assemblyman Paul Koretz (D-42nd District). In January 2005, the California Anti-Declaw Act, signed into law by California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, became the first state law in the US banning the declawing of wild and exotic cats. Scientific research published by Paw Project veterinarians provided the data behind the 2006 USDA ruling forbidding declawing of animals by USDA-licensed owners of exotic and wild animals. The USDA ban is enforced by the federal Animal Welfare Act.

Declawing is a surgical procedure, also called onychectomy, in which the animal's toes are amputated at the last joint. Most people do not realize that a portion of the bone - not only the nail - is removed. Declawing may result in permanent lameness, arthritis, and other long-term complications. It is actually illegal in many countries. View case studies of cats that have suffered negative health effects due to declawing.

Since April 2000 veterinarians working with The Paw Project have performed reparative surgery on lions, tigers, cougars, leopards, and jaguars that had been victims of declaw surgery. Enjoying relief for the first time after years of suffering, declawed cats that could hobble only a few agonizing steps prior to reparative surgery are able to leap, run, and play much more as nature intended.

There are more than 100 big cat sanctuaries in 41 states caring for over 1000 declawed cats that live each day in constant pain. The Paw Project's goal is to help every one of these cats by providing support to animal sanctuaries and veterinarians.