Get Acquainted With The Clipper
Unfamiliar objects can be stressful for your cat. Leave the clippers out where your cat can investigate them. You can even leave a treat on them to encourage your cat to sniff and become familiar with them.
Some cats are afraid of the sound the clipper makes when trimming their nails. With your cat in your lap, place a piece of dry spaghetti in the clippers. Hold the clippers near their paws and gently massage one paw, then cut the noodle so it makes a cracking noise. Immediately give your cat a reward for accepting the noise and the massage.
Trimming Your Cats Nails With Help
Tips To Make Nail Trimming Easier For You And Your Cat
It is important to keep your cats nails trimmed monthly to maintain a healthy length. Cats use their nails for so many things, scratching, protection, climbing, etc. Although they are great for your cat, they arent so great for your furniture and skin. Keeping them well kept will help protect you and your home.
Although animals do not typically enjoy having their nails trimmed, with some determination, patience, and treats, you will be able to achieve a routine that your cat will actually learn to enjoy. The younger you begin with them, the easier it will be. But you can use these tips for a cat of any age.
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Trimming Cat Claws: Tips From The Pros
To increase your chances of nail trimming success, follow these tips:
Practice first: Before you get out the clippers, put your cat in position and practice extending their nails one at a time. When your cat is used to this process, it will help them acclimate when its time for the real nail trimming. If you use a nail grinder, you should turn it on during these practice sessions. Dont actually use it on their nails at firstthese practice sessions are just to help your cat get used to the noise.
Stay relaxed: Your cat is masterful at reading your energy. If they sense that you are anxious or fearful, they may want no part of the event. Fake it if necessary.
Play soft music: Classical guitar, meditation songs, any type of soothing music can help both you and your cat relaxas long as it does not have bird calls in it.
Use feline pheromones: Stress-relieving pheromones, like a Feliway diffuser, can help your cat chill out when its time for a trim.
Use cat treats as a reward, not as a bribe: Treats can be a powerful motivator, but dont give them away before you get your cat to cooperate. Let your kitty know you have the treat to gain their interest, and wait until they allow you to clip a nail before you deliver the payoff.
Understand The Cat’s Condition First
If your favorite cat is mating or is in a bad mood for other reasons, then undo your intention to cut his nails first. Cats will be very difficult to keep still, so it will definitely be difficult for you to cut their nails.
So you must first understand the condition of your cat. It’s actually very easy to detect it, try holding and gently rubbing the cat’s body and head, if the cat doesn’t respond or even lays down, then this is a strong indicator that the cat’s mood is good.
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So Do Cats Need Their Nails Trimmed
If cats are especially active, they may not actually need their nails trimmed. But you should never take an out of sight, out of mind approach and assume that all is well with your cats claws. Even if you have a young, active, and healthy cat that spends plenty of time climbing cat trees and scratching their posts you should still regularly check claws to make sure they not starting curve inward or have especially sharp points.
But trimming cat claws isnt just about your cat, its also great for you! While not every cat is a lap cat, there are plenty of felines that love nothing more than crawling into your lap or on your chest and digging their claws into you! Youd be amazed at the difference that a simple trim can make!
Keeping up with nail trimming can also protect your furniture! Even if your cat isnt actively trying to scratch the furniture, claws that are too long can get caught on fabrics like your couch or shirt. This can quickly lead to small but unintentional holes in your fabric!
Do Your Cat’s Claws Need Trimming
The first question on your mind may be whether or not your cat’s claws even need trimming. After all, isn’t that what that scratching post and catnip I just purchased are for?
In the wild, cats wear their claws down through use, whether it’s scratching to mark their territory, hunting prey, or just walking on rough surfaces.
In the home they don’t get nearly as much room to be aggressive and wear those claws down, so they stay sharper longer. You may have also noticed that a cats claws shed the outer sheath over time, revealing new needle-sharp talons.
An indoor cat has no need for those super sharp claws. When left untrimmed, those claws can damage floors and furniture, and they can scratch you deeply during a play session.
An additional serious issue oftentimes overlooked by many pet parents is the risk of overgrown claws. While they more commonly happen to older less active cats and cats with extra toes, they can cause a lot of pain and sometimes infections.
One option some people go for is declawing indoor cats, but this is a terrible idea. For one thing, “declawing” isn’t really an accurate term since it removes more than just the claw. If you compare a cats toes to your fingers, the equivalent would be removing the first knuckle’s worth of your fingers. This level of removal is performed to prevent the claws from growing back.
In spite of much controversy about this topic, several states have already made due to the inhumane nature of the surgery.
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Kitty Claw Control: How And When To Cut Your Cats Nails
Cutting your cats nails may not be on your favorite list of pastimes. The good news is that taking the time to train your furry friend and a little patience on your part will pay off and allow for successful and maybe even enjoyable nail trims! Heres all you need to know about how and when to exercise kitty claw control!
Here Is The Nail Trimming Process
- Most cats dont like to have their nails trimmed and some will absolutely not tolerate it. If your cat wont even allow you to hold his or her paws, you may have to rely on a pet groomer or your cats vet to trim your pets nails.
- If you take a slow and easy approach, you can succeed in time, especially if you have treats ready, and your cat may associate the nail clipping routine with yummy treats.
- Dont attempt to clip your cats nails if your pet is upset or if you are upset.
- Towel You can gently wrap your cat loosely in a towel if you are afraid he or she might suddenly bolt off your lap and scratch you.
- Sharp cat nail clippers There are a variety of good nail clippers for cats. Some of them are designed to make sure you dont clip too close to the vein that runs into the thick part of the claw.
- Styptic Powder If you have clippers that arent designed to protect the vein and you accidently cut into it, you can apply a small amount of powder to stop the bleeding.
Creative Commons Attribution: Permission is granted to repost this article in its entirety with credit to Hastings Veterinary Hospital and a clickable link back to this page.
- Hastings Staff
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What To Do When Your Cat Is Scratching At The Wrong Places
Cats have always been known as scratchers and they have an instinct of sharpening their nails. However, it can be a real headache if your pet starts to wreak havoc on your carpet. drapes or sofa. The solution is not to discourage your cat but to redirect her scratching instinct from your furniture or carpet to a scratching post or cat tree. Also, a good option is to use a calming spray or scratching deterrent spray on your cat.
Trimming A Cats Nails By Yourself
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Take Off A Little At A Time
Start by clipping the very tip of your cats nail, keeping an eye on the quick to ensure you dont accidentally hit it. Take off just a little bit at a time, especially if youre a beginnerits better to start slowly and work up to cutting more off in future trimming sessions than to stress your cat out by accidentally cutting the quick.
As you trim more and more off of your cats nail, you may see a pink dot in the middle of the cut area of the nail. Stop therethats a sign that youre close to the quick.
To help your cat enjoy the experience, you can try giving your cat a treat after every nail. Some cats may refuse treats during nail cutting, though. If your feline doesnt eat during the trimming, you can save the treats until youre finished.
While trimming, look for warning signs such as tail twitching, growling, body stiffening or panting. These indicate an angry cat who may scratch or bite. If you see any of these signs, take a break. Cat bites easily become infected, so you should never ignore signs that your kitty is angry. Always see a doctor if your cat bites you, even if the wound is minor.
And remember: Accidents happen. If you mistakenly cut the quick, take a pinch of styptic powder, flour or cornstarch and press it to your cats nail for a few seconds to stop the bleeding.
What Happens When You Dont Trim Your Cats Nails
There are some issues thatll arise if a cats nail is too long. This includes:
- Nails getting stuck. If a nail is too long, it could get tangled on fabric, wood, etc. This might lead to your cat ripping its nail by accident, which can lead to infections.
- Nails growing back into the pad. Common, unfortunately, with older cats. This can also lead to an infection.
- Theyll want to scratch more. This can damage your furniture, plants, etc.
In short, very sharp nails can lead to complications or at the very least be annoying for both you and your cat.
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Q Does Clipping My Cats Nail Tips Keep Him From Scratching The Furniture If Not Whats The Point
A. The point is to get rid of those sharp points. There are actually a handful of reasons why its a good idea to clip your cats nails, and reducing your cats ability to shred your furniture is just one of them. Really, though, I wouldnt rate that at number one, especially since redirecting your cats natural desire to scratch isnt that hard. With so many incredible choices in cat trees, and scratching pads, posts, trays and more, your furniture is unlikely to be your cats first choice.
So why nip the tips? It makes life more comfortable for both you and your cat. If you have one of those cats who needs to knead you and who pokes those sharp tips into your skin you know what Im talking about. Taking off the very end of those claws will make this loving gesture something you can enjoy, rather than dread. For your cat, clipping his tips can prevent painful broken claws that can result when a sharp tip gets caught in the carpet. And yes, having those claws a little less lethal will reduce the damage should your fashion-conscious cat decide to give the corner of your sofa a hip new distressed look.
How To Restrain Your Cat For Nail Trimmings
Some cats require very little restraint, but here are some tips for the fearful, fretful or ferocious feline.
Little or No Restraint
If you have a fairly willing cat, they may find comfort lying in your lap.
Gently rest or drape your forearm over the cats neck and hindquarters and try to pick up a foot, usually with your left hand and clippers in the right hand.
You might want to have a thick towel or pillow on your lap between you and the cat in case your cat decides to use your thighs as a springboard to leap off your lap.
Lets say this doesnt go so well: My suggestion is to wait and try again at another time when your cat is calm and is not aware of what youre up to.
The Towel Method
Some cats are not necessarily nasty but are just jumpy and wriggly.
- First, wrap them in a bath towel.
- Then try to take out a paw for nail trimming.
With some practice, the towel can help envelop 3 limbs while you take out 1 limb at a time.
The 2-Person Method
If you have ever watched your vet and a vet tech trim your cats nails, 2 people can often make this task go quite smoothly.
A table or countertop works well. One person holds or even restrains with a back-of-the-neck grip while the other person trims the nails.
This is not for every couple or roommate team nor is it for every cat. You can get hurt if you arent comfortable with your partner or with restraint.
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Properly Trimming Cat Claws
Some cats are very laid-back, love being handled, and will happily let you do pretty much anything you like to them. Others are very skittish and will run away at the first sign of you wanting to pick them up, let alone handle their paws or trim their nails.
To a certain extent, you can train a cat to be more comfortable with having their paws handled and their claws trimmed. Often, this requires working with them when they’re a kitten and getting them used to the idea and experience.
Unfortunately, many of us adopt older cats or strays that haven’t had such socialization as kittens, and it’s much more difficult to train an older cat to be calm while restrained.
Regardless of what your cat’s personality is, the goal when it comes down to nail trimming is to try to avoid the restraining part at all costs whenever possible. Restraining your cat should be the last resort after all other options have failed.
Don’t worry, we have a bunch of tips to help make the claw trimming process easier on both you and your friendly feline.