Jake D asked in PetsCats · 1 decade ago

How does one clip a cat's paw nails.. exactly how???

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  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Don't clip a cat's nails. There is a nerve that goes into the nail and since they are short it is easy to nip it and they will bleed. Give your cat a scratching post to help. Also if the cat goes out she will need them to defend herself.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Super! I am quite the expert on this -- I have 4 cats which I trim and my mother has 3, which are also my job to trim.

    Get your cat between your legs with your knees raised to the cat's shoulder height (recommend a sofa). With cat scissors in your right hand already, lift paw 1 with the left hand. You will go to each claw and gently push the nail fully out. You will clip off the excess nail. Do not clip too far. Basically, you clip close to the opaque part avoiding the subtler gray area (it is all attached to the toe). I would recommend as you start and gain experience that you just clip off the ends.

    Remember I told you to have your knees at cat shoulder height? Since your hands are so busy with the paws and scissors, your knees keep your cat in control. You squeeze gently to keep him there.

    Yes, your cat will object. However, and this I say with much experience, as you do this, it will become so secondhand for the cat that the objections will eventually fall ... and you will have a very docile cat to work with, with no knees needed. My mom has a cat which literally sits there placidly as I pick up each pay and clip.

    Do praise and love on your cat as you do this. I find quite talking and telling him what a good boy he is helps keep the cat calm during this exercise. Remember not to yell, pull, or grasp too tight, since you want the cat to remember the exercise as a good or average thing (not negatively). If during your first try you only get 1 nail clipped before he lets loose and claws you, that's okay ... go again for another nail later that day. Your persistence will tell the cat several things -- 1) we're getting all of these done; 2) I know and respect that you don't like it; 3) you can trust me.

    I only clip my cats' front paws, since they go outdoors and may need the rear ones to defend. I check them to ensure there are no ingrown nails (curving back into the toe) but do not trim. If you have a biter or slasher (my mom has a manx), go easy and very gentle ... you want your own paws to be in good shape afterwards.

    Good luck!!

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  • 1 decade ago

    You DO need to trim your cat's claws. I don't know why anyone would say that you don't.

    Use cat clippers, you can get them at the petstore. Using scissors or regular nail clippers doesn't work, cat nail clippers are specially designed to cut the nail the proper way.

    If your cat is especially resistant, wrap him or her in a towel and only let one paw out at a time to clip. Hold them firmly, or better yet, have someone else hold them. The towel can be a lifesaver for cats who don't like or aren't used to having their nails done.

    Press down firmly on the top and bottom of your cat's paw. This will cause the nails to appear. Look for the pink part at the base of the nail, called "the quick". You want to stay away from that. If you clip it, it will bleed profusely. Line up your clippers parallel to the flat part of the nail, and just snip the tip (the clear, opaque part of the nail).

    After you are done, tell them they are a good kitty and give them a treat. Most cats never fully enjoy getting their nails clipped, but at least you won't be hunting behind the couch or under the bed for a kitty who knows what's coming.

    If you are still concerned about cutting kitty's nails, try going to your vet to have them done, and get them to show you while you are there. Also, if you are concerned about clipping the quick, keep a barber's styptic pen on hand, and just powder the tip if you nick it. It will stop the bleeding.

    After cats have had their nails done, they want to scratch, so be sure to put down a scratch pad when they are done. If you need something to stop them from scratching the furniture, try SoftPaws, a plastic nail covering available at your vet and most pet stores. Note: You do have to clip your cat's nails for them to be able to wear SoftPaws, but after that the nail covering can be worn for four months before they have to be changed. They also come in a wide variety of colors and designs, or just plain clear for the simple kitty.

    Good Luck!

    Source(s): Having lots and lots of cute kitties.
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  • 1 decade ago

    Get a good pair of clippers from a vet or pet store etc. I like the scissor type as opposed to the guillotine. Apply some pressure to the center of the paw and this will make the claws extend. Then clip where the nail curls. With cats it's easy to see how far you can go because their nails are clear and you can see where the kwik (vein) begins.

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  • 1 decade ago

    First don't listen to the goofs who say don't do it.

    My cats are easy to do. I usually do them while they are trying to take a nap. They are more willing to do it then. I must be lucky because mine just lay there while I do it.

    Gently squeeze the paw pad to extend the nail. If your cat has light colored nails you can see the blood vessel you DO NOT want to cut that far down. I just trim the tips off of mine, after the nails are extended I hold the one I'm going for first, keeping it extended still. Occasionally I do the back nails if they are visible without the cat extending them. Make sure you have a proper set of nail clippers and not the human kind. It makes the job easier. I'm sure your vet would be happy to demonstrate how to do it.

    Give treats to the cat afterwords to tell them what a good job they did.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Next time you take your cat to the vet ask them to show you the proper way to do it.

    They should be more than happy to show you.

    They can be trimmed but you can cause MAJOR problems for your pet by cutting too much off.

    You also need to get really fast about doing it since most cats will not tolerate having their claws trimmed for more than a few seconds at a time.

    They will probably scratch the snot out of you, and you can hurt your cat just trying to hold them down to do it especially if your cat is a squimer.

    It can be a very trying process.

    If you've never done it before having the vet show you how to hold them and how/where to clip and safest bet.

    Source(s): Been owned by cats for years.
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  • 1 decade ago

    You don't clip their nails. I have three cats and their claws can be very annoying (scratch furniture, scratch themselves, scratch me - yikes!). Try this - go to Petsmart, Bigg's or where ever and get a cat scratching box. It has corrugated cardboard in it and should come with some catnip you can sprinkle on it as an attractant. Cats have a natural instinct to scratch with their paws to shed their sharp nails and will take to the scratch box very quickly. My cats love it and would rather scratch on that thing instead of my furniture.

    Source(s): Personal experience - your cat will shed his sharp nails (making you happy) and get a little "high" from the catnip (making him happy).
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  • 1 decade ago

    Go to Petsmart and they'll have cat nail clippers. To clip thier nails get them calmed down and just clip the nail (This does not hurt the cats!).

    Source(s): I do it to my cats!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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  • 1 decade ago

    its actually not fun at all..first you need to get a clipper especially made for cats...they are made so that you are careful to only clip the top curve of the nail because if you go further down the cat will bleed...i make sure to wear grooming gloves because she might bite me...i hold her in my lap and clip as fast as I can because she can only deal with this for approximately 3mins...i have tried to train her to sit for this, i give her treats for being good and so by now she is kinda tolerant, but if i take too much time she will flip out on me. you should ask your vet for more details and just try slowly with you cat because if you traumatize the cat you will never get near it with clippers again..good luck

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  • 1 decade ago

    My cat is simply amazing when it comes to cutting her claws -- she sits on my lap and I cut them with toe-nail clippers. She gets treats after every session. She's SUCH a good kitty!

    You just have to be careful not to cut them to the "quick" -- the fleshy part of the claw. Just cut the translucent nail itself to about 1/8 of an inch from the quick.

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