I'd say about a 9, where a ten on the scale is the most awful torture resulting in a slow, painful death of the cat.
Don't declaw a cat. It is mutilation and cruel.
- With the exception of the US, all other developed countries have outlawed declawing or have it strictly regulated as cruelty.
- Declawing is the only 'medical' procedure where the animal cries while under complete anesthesia.
- Declawing is the equivalent of cutting the first knuckle off of each of your fingers, because the nail is fused to the bone so they have to remove it completely.
- 90% of cat bites(very serious when it breaks skin) are by declawed cats - scratching is first defense and without it cats are more likely to bite.
- Declawed cats are much more likely to have issues using the litterbox and with aggression.
- Declawed cats have no defense if attacked by another animal.
- Declawing, in addition to being excruciatingly painful, can cause multiple other long-term health problems.
I do work in a Humane Society, I give this speech all the time to people who don't know better and encourage the MULTIPLE alternatives that do not harm the cat.