Trim my cat's nails?? ARE YOU CRAZY?!
Yes. I’m just a tad bit on the crazy scale. 😜
So…is it important to trim your cat’s nails? Simple answer? Yes. Yes, it is important to trim your cat's nails. Though sometimes, it won’t be necessary. It truly depends on your cat’s lifestyle and their habits.
Usually, if you have an outdoor kitty, you’d try to leave their claws alone so they can defend themselves; and they’re pretty good at maintaining their claws themselves. Indoor kitties could be the same, regarding maintenance. They’d usually maintain their claws by scratching on one of those corrugated boxes or a scratching post.
If that’s the case, why even trim their nails???
Simple, not all cats are the same.
Some indoor and outdoor kitties don’t quite know how to exactly maintain their claws, so their humans are left with that task. It is highly recommended that you keep an eye on the length of their claws. It’s for your safety and theirs. When a kitty doesn’t know how to maintain their claws, it grows too long and actually curls into the pads of their paws. OUCH!
Sadly, I’ve actually seen this, and though I was quite enraged that the “owner” of that kitty (for letting grow that long and not doing anything about it sooner), I was more worried about the little guy. You could tell by the way he would try not to put too much pressure on his paws that something was very wrong. His nails had curled into his paws and it had been stabbed into the flesh. After we had clipped his nails, which was no easy task because we could tell he was hurting, he was so very relieved. I don’t know if it was just me, but he looked so relieved - like he could breathe easier. When he tested out his steps, though he was still in a bit of pain, he had actually put his paws fully flat (even though he was still a bit shaky).
So you see, trimming your kitty’s nails is quite beneficial for their health. Sometimes, you don’t often see it, but they get their claws stuck in something and sometimes it bleeds. It’s nobody’s fault. Kitties love to play, they love to touch things they shouldn’t be touching, they love to goof around with playmates. So, checking on their claws at least once a week, or bi-weekly, is a good thing.
Now, big question: how in the heck do you get your kitty to sit still for a nail trim??
That’s the question of the day, isn’t it?
This is my trick: get them used to it at a young age, or right when you get them. Set a time every day, or every other day, where you’d sit down and hold your kitty on your lap and start playing with their paws. Hold onto their paws, start pushing their nails out, but don’t do anything yet, start letting them get used to soft yet firm touches – they’ll definitely pull away (usually ALL THE TIME) – but they’ll eventually get used to you touching them. Then set a day each week, or bi-weekly, to try and trim their nails.
For me, I trim my kitties’ nails every week. Why? Because these little buggers love to sharpen them right after I trim them! Lol.
How do I do it? Well, they’re so used to it, that I just sit them on my lap and they let me trim their nails. I got them used to it that they only ever flinch if they’re too hyper and want to play with everyone else. I’ve got one kitty, Evan, who actually growls at me every single time I trim his nails. But then he also licks my face, so it’s confusing. Is he mad at me but still loves me at the same time and wants to show it?? Who knows?! LOL
One very important thing to learn:
FINDING THE QUICK.
What the heck is a "QUICK"??? Well, simple explanation is, the quick is the pink part of your kitty's nails. This is where the nerves and blood vessels are located, make sure you DO NOT cut this very sensitive area or your kitty will get hurt and bleed out a bit. Please see picture:
Push their nail out from its retracted state, like such:
Then, you'll be able to see the QUICK (which you should avoid) and trim off the really sharp part of their nails.
Now, another very important thing: NAIL CLIPPERS/TRIMMERS. It's important to get the proper tools to get this job done correctly and painlessly. You will find lots of nail trimmers out in pet stores, and they even sell some at the dollar stores. Try not to buy the ones from the dollar stores because they can be quite dull and will probably be good to use just once. Here are some good examples of sturdy and sharp nail trimmers:
As you can see, one of them has a spring-action thing going on. Makes it easier to handle for people with bigger hands. I have both, but I often use the one without the spring - just my preference. You can find these at your local pet stores, or you can order them online at Chewy's or even Amazon. Please be careful when trying to trim your own kitty's nails with some of these clippers, sometimes, they aren't sharp enough, and they can actually hurt your kitty.
Overall, if you truly want to learn how to trim your kitty's nails, go to a groomer and have them teach you some techniques. They are the pros, and you can be too!
I know I missed a few weeks of blogs, so I will make up for it by posting one blog entry for the next two days following this one. If there's any questions you'd like answered, please don't hesitate to comment what content you'd like to see!
Well, folks, I hope you learned something today!
As always, be kind to each other, be kind to animals, love your pets!