Clipping Your Cat's Claws - dummies

By Gina Spadafori, Paul D. Pion

The hardest part of clipping your cat’s claws is getting your cat to cooperate. Sometimes this task requires a tremendous amount of patience. But remember, if you get only one claw done a night, don’t worry about it, because you can get through them all soon enough.

To clip your cat’s nails, push gently on his pad to expose the nail, as shown in Figure 1. In the center is a pink area coming partway down: This area is a vein, called the quick, and you want to avoid cutting it to prevent bleeding. Slide your clipper to a spot just beyond the pink and squeeze the tool with a smooth, strong motion. If you can’t see the quick, just cut the “hook” off the nail, and you should be fine. Don’t forget to praise your pet for being tolerant.


Figure 1: Trimming your cat’s nails.

If you do draw blood, apply a touch of Kwik-Stop powder to the tip to stop the bleeding, and call it a night before your cat returns the favor and draws blood from you.

In pet-supply outlets, you find full-body restraints designed to make nail-trimming and medicating easier. Some of these are quite clever, with openings that allow you to get at one paw at a time while keeping your pet gently immobilized. These devices are fine if you can’t get the job done any other way, but your cat would prefer you to work with him slowly and gently to teach him to put up with claw-clipping instead.