Grooming is an essential part of keeping a pet and should be approached with all seriousness. It involves a series of activities, each for a different purpose. It includes brushing hair, bathing, brushing the teeth, and trimming cat claws. When it comes to cats, they are self-groomers, making them low maintenance to some extent. However, they might need a little help from their owners. Nail clipping can be tricky, especially if you have a feisty cat, but it is necessary since the damage they can cause is far worse. Most cats do not enjoy getting their nails clipped, so you have to find an innovative way to go about it. After reading this article, you’ll be an expert when it comes to cat nail trimming as you will learn exactly how and when to cut cat’s nails.
Why Does Your Cat Need Nail Trimming?
The claws of a cat consist of two sections, which are the pulp close to the center and the keratinized area which forms the horny end. The nails are retractable and only appear when the cat needs them. This feature prevents contact with the ground unlike in dogs where they are exposed. Cats use their nails for activities like hunting, scratching and digging into things. These actions are not so lousy when the cat is outdoors but around your furniture, it can be a problem. The longer the nails, the more the damage, and so it is necessary to trim. Cats tend to knead their owners to show their affection and if their claws are long, then there is an increased likelihood of poking. Getting bruised by your pet is not a pleasant experience, and in such a case, trimming is necessary. Long claws can make walking also very uncomfortable for your pet, and they might develop an abnormal posture in trying to adjust. Aged cats do not have the energy to dig into objects as a way to trim their nails and are at risk of infections. Trimming their nails helps to keep disease-causing micro-organisms out to keep the cat healthy. In summary, it is more comfortable for both you and your pet if their nails are trimmed, and you will enjoy your time together.
How to Trim Cat Nails?
The Preparatory Step: This is where you try to make your pet comfortable with the process of nail trimming. It is better to set the mood for the session, ensuring the environment is calm and serene during the process. The perfect time to trim your cat’s nails is after they have had a full meal, and they are groggy or when they are sleepy. Place them in a comfortable position, possibly on your lap, and preferably in their favorite part of the house. For each paw, you plan on trimming pet it gently in addition to other parts of their body where they like to be pet. If they resist, do not force them since there might be a struggle. Instead, use treats and praise to get them to be comfortable enough to let you cut their paw. You can massage their paws to help them relax more and then study it properly before you begin. Squeeze the fleshy part of the paws to reveal the actual claw and note the thick pointed area. Also, pay attention to the pinkish area inside the nail, referred to as the quick. The best time to start trimming is when the cat is young so that they get used to it before they are older.
Get the Right Tools: There are a lot of tools available to trim cat nails. You can use anything from scissors to cat nail clippers or guillotine clippers, which are specially designed for the purpose. Generally, the sharper the tool, the cleaner, and quicker the cut. A blunt instrument will leave your cat’s nail splitting instead of smoothly slicing off, and the results will be messy. Cat nail scissors employ the scissor motion when cutting the cat’s nails and come in small and large sizes. The smaller ones are excellent if you want to remove just the tips while the large one works best for older, more hardened nails. The guillotine nail clippers have a sliding blade that cuts the nails once the handles are squeezed together. These work for thick nails and some are designed in the shape of the nail for smoother cutting. When cutting your cat’s nails having a styptic pencil, which is used to stop bleeding in case the quick is cut. The growth rate if the cat’s nails vary from cat to cat, so it helps to check their nails to trim them regularly.
Check out our guide on Nail Caps for Cats.
Don’ts Concerning Cat Nail Trimming
- Forget about trimming your cat’s nails when they are jumpy are agitated. This increases the chances of scratching you or worse, you over cutting their claws. As mentioned, a calm environment and a cat is instrumental in getting the best results.
- Do not cut the nails all at once but rather in bits at a time. It is safer to trim your cat’s nails in bits at a time, and you will also prefer the results.
- Do not scold your pet for not complying with the session. Shouting at your pet or punishing them goes against the aim of keeping them calm and you will not be able to achieve anything successfully.
Cats are generally active animals, and they need healthy claws to go about their business. Their way of keeping their nails short and neat is to scratch into any hard object they can find. To prevent that object from being your precious furniture or vases, help your cat by trimming their claws. Cats are not the easiest to deal with when it comes to nail clipping and so you have to get creative with it. The outline above is useful steps on how-to cut cat nails to a beneficial length. Save you and your pet from the danger of long nails with this information on cutting cat nails.
- Clipping a Cat’s Claws – Washington State University
- Trimming a cat’s claws – The Humane Society of the US