Let me preface this with two things. First, I will talk about animals every chance I get, especially our cats, so look forwards to those. And second, it’s almost Sora’s birthday (my mother-in-law’s cat) so I feel it warrants an animal post.
About seventeen years ago, my parents got me a kitten but we had him declawed. I was little and didn’t know better, but now I see how awful that was and, when he passed away, I told myself I’d never do that again. So, when I got my new little monster, I had to learn how to trim cat claws.
Now when you first mention trimming a cat’s claws to people, they either don’t see that as a necessary thing or they are immediately apprehensive of the very idea. Let me first say that it is definitely necessary if your cat is an indoor cat because he/she may not be able to grind their claws down enough just on scratching posts and furniture alone. If the nail gets too long, it can curl in and cut your cat’s feet, making for a hurt and grumpy cat.
For the apprehensive people, it’s really not as hard as you may think. It’s probably easier than trimming a baby’s fingernails. You’ll want to start this habit when your pet is very young, but older cats are also adaptable. Make a habit of playing with your cat’s paws and pushing the claw out. Once your cat is used to that, get them used to the clippers. These should be clippers specifically made for pets and not nail clippers for people! Leave them on the floor for your cat to investigate, play with them when you play with their paws. They’ll soon be just another random item to the cat.
When you’re ready, set the cat in your lap facing away from you and expose their claw. Just like people nails, you’ll see the white tip and then the pink part. Only cut the white tip because the pink is part of the paw just like the pink on our nails is part of the finger.
Be patient and don’t rush the process. When we started with Mako, we had to do only one paw at a time with a treat and a break in between each one. Your cat probably won’t be thrilled at first, but they’ll get used to having their nails trimmed the more you do it.