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How To Cut Cat Nails At Home - Step By Step Guide

How To Cut Cat Nails At Home - Step By Step Guide

Cutting your cat's nails isn't an absolute necessity, but are you ready to live with the consequences? Worn-out furniture at home is definitely an alarming sign to start putting a regular nail trimming routine in place. Since cat claws grow in layers, they instinctively scratch them to peel off the old claw sheaths. 

Claws have a significant role in cats lives: 

  • Playing
  • Hunting 
  • Climbing 
  • Defending themselves
  • Marking their territory 
  • Stretching stiff muscles
  • Exercising
  • Relieving stress

Now you can imagine how difficult it is for a cat to spend a day without healthy and well-trimmed nails. 

Do you need help with your cat's grooming routine? Let's walk you through all the necessary steps to trim your cat's nails.


#1 Warm-up phase

Introducing cats to the nail clipper should happen when they're still young. Choose a quiet place and time so that everything brings peace and calm to the cats. Focus on making them comfortable and loved. Give them gentle touches on the toes, nails, and fingers while talking to them. 

It may take time and seem slow initially, but it is important to familiarize cats with the instrument to avoid panic.

Having some styptic powder is very handy if you accidentally cut the pink strip extending from the nail base. This particular part, known as the quick, is very sensitive due to the nerves. You can dab some powder on the cut area to stop the bleeding. 


#2 How to cut cat nails at home - Step By Step

Now that your cat is comfortable with you handling her claws, it's time for the cut. Make sure to use a nail clipper specific for cats, as it can make life much easier, and follow the five steps below. 


STEP 1: Hold your cat's paws gently and squeeze the middle part between your thumb and index finger to extend the claw. 

STEP 2: Place the nail clipper at 90 degrees to the nail point, where it starts to curve downwards.

STEP 3: Slowly trim the nail and avoid cutting from side to side. 

STEP 4: Continue trimming top to bottom.

STEP 5: When you are done, reward your cat with treats and praise her for cooperating.


Never try to cut your cat's nails by force. If today is not the day, that's totally fine; stop and try again tomorrow. 


Do's and Don'ts of trimming cat nails

Choose the right place

If you think that the place and setting don't really matter, then you are mistaken. The more comfortable your cat is, the better your trimming session will be. Consider setting some gentle music in the background to help the cat relax. 


Don't start cutting before practicing

Nothing can be more alarming than getting a sharp instrument near your cat. Make sure to practice all the steps for a few days before you do the trimming. 


Choose the angle wisely

Keep the nail clipper at a 45-degree angle and cut quickly with precision. 


Stay away from the quick.

It is not difficult to avoid getting near the quick, its pink color makes it quite obvious, and you will be able to differentiate it from the rest of the nail.


Three advantages of trimming cat nails

Avoid scratches on sofas, armchairs, and other furniture.

However, you should know that they do it instinctively and not on purpose. That is why your pet must have scratchers and toys to sharpen its nails.


Keeps them in good shape

In order to keep the nails in good condition, it is recommended that you cut them regularly, more or less every two or three weeks.

It does not have to be a major cut, but it is enough to remove the tip.


Prevents disease and infection

Veterinarians always say that nails are one of the points where more diseases, fungi, and infections originate in cats, regardless of their age.

These problems arise when the nails exceed the ideal length or are over-curved. When this happens, they dig into your cat's pads, causing wounds and discomfort when walking.


3 reasons NOT to cut your cat's nails

In some cases, it may be advisable not to cut your cat's nails. We already know the advantages of doing it; let's find out the disadvantages.


1. Outdoor cats and the need to defend themselves

2. Cats that go outside use tree trunks to sharpen their nails

3. Aggressive cats that do not tolerate nail trimming well


Alternative to cutting cat nails

If you still prefer letting your cat keep her nails, here is an alternative to prevent the risks that come with it. 

1. Provide scratching surfaces: scratching post or sticky cat tape

2. Repellant spray


Cutting your cat's nails turned out to be easier than you think, right? It is normal for your cat not to like it first, but following the steps, slowly and gently will make the process eventually easier. 




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