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Clipping your Cats Nails if her cat scratching post isn’t the only thing shes scratching on!

Thursday, October 1, 2009
posted by Jim Murphy

clipping-a-cats-nailsIf your cat is like mine, trimming her nails is certainly not an easy task. My cat Mollie is fine, until she sees the clippers. My cat Millie will have none of it and will not allow her nails to be clipped! So how do you perform this “ungodly” task especially if your cat is clawing more than her cat scratching post?  This information was obtained by Washington State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine. Most cats do not like having their nails clipped. Start by trimming their nails at a young age so that they get used to the process.  To restrain a cat in your lap, use your forearms draped over the cat’s neck and hind-end to keep the cat in your lap. The clipper is held in nail-clippersthe right hand. There are several kinds of nail clippers that you could buy, a guillotine type, a scissors cut, and a standard human fingernail clipper. I use a scissors type of clipper because my cats nails usually curve and for me, they are easier to use. The guillotine or regular human fingernail clipper may be easier for you.  Hold the trimmer in your right hand if you are right handed. Cats have retractile claws so you need to gently squeeze the toe between thumb and forefinger to expose the claw. Most cats have light colored claws and you can see the pink veins that supply blood to the area. You do not want to cut down there. I recommend that you trim right at the curve. If you trim down too far, you will cut the vessel, the claw will bleed and your cat will experience pain. The sharper the blade, the cleaner the cut.

If the claw is cut too short, you can use a styptic pencil containing silver nitrate to stop blood flow, although many animal object to this the styptic pencil as much, or more, than claw cutting. The black end of the stick is held to the bleeding nail and gently rotated.

Even without any treatment the nail should stop bleeding in about 5 minutes or less.

You may have to cut a few nails at a time if your cat gets restless or jumps off your lap. Mollie usually lets me cut a few but then jumps off my lap when she’s had enough. If this happens, wait a day or so and try again.



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