Paws Up for Wednesday – How to Trim a Cat’s Claws  

Do you trim your cats’ claws, do you take her to a groomer, or do you wait until your next vet visit and have them do it? I’ve done all three. My tip, based on my own experiences is, it depends on the cat. And I suggest if you’re going to do it yourself, carefully pick the time and place.

Some of my cats have been good paw-dicure “clients.” Others, not so much. With Olivia, I wait until she’s comfortable in my lap—maybe a little sleepy, definitely relaxed, then I can usually get a paw or two done. But you have to have the tools you need at your elbow. I keep Olivia’s claw trimmers on my desk because she often wants to curl up in my lap while I’m at the computer.

This morning I was petting her and discovered a mat under one “arm.” She actually let me fumble around in the drawer to find the scissors and cut it out. Good girl. If you get these early enough sometimes you can work them out with your fingers. Take advantage of those cuddle times to check for mats and overgrown or ingrown claws—ingrown claws happen, especially with your older cat.

I don’t trim claws as short as the vet does—I’m timid about cutting into the quick. So I pretty much just snip off the sharp little end to keep Olivia from getting hung up on a curtain or something.

Tip: When a cat does not want her claws cut or a mat cut out of her fur, unless you have a super great rapport and control over that cat, let it go—until a time when she’s more relaxed and willing. As you probably know, if a cat doesn’t want to be messed with at that moment, you aren’t going to get the job done.

Tip 2: Be careful trimming the claws on a fluffy cat with furry white paws. It’s hard to see the transparent claws in all that white fur. Make sure you can see what you’re trimming or you might cut into the claw too far and cause damage and pain.

Yeah, if you’re timid about doing the job, make an appointment with your veterinarian. Surely, the process of luring her into the carrier is going to be easier than doing the grooming yourself—or just let her have long nails.

Truly, do keep an eye on those claws. I had a cat whose dewclaw curled around and poked back into her paw pad. Painful and preventable.

Good luck.

This entry was posted in About Cats, Cat Care. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *