How to cut a cat’s nails?

Cutting a cat’s nails is not easy at all, apart from the annoyance it entails for the animal and how delicate it can be to avoid causing any harm.

Felines are born with nails because they need them to survive and perform vital functions. With their nails they scratch, climb, play, cling to the ground so as not to lose their balance, walk and hunt. They provide them with the thrust to jump. They can save their lives when they climb to a high place to escape.

If you approach to caress them but they do not want to, it will be common for them to touch you with the nails of the hind legs. If you hold them in your arms and they grab you with their nails without holding on too much, they communicate their desire that you let them go.

If your cat goes out of the house or interacts with other animals outside, you should not cut their nails. You would be taking away its defences, it would not be able to explore the terrain to be able to return home and you would leave them in a position of inferiority to possible attackers.

The other option is that your cat never leaves the house, gets very nervous and scratches the furniture, walls or curtains, even having toys or exclusive areas for them. In that case, there are many people who find it necessary to cut the cat’s nails. This way they want to avoid damage, which harms a member of the family or themselves.

They even use their nails as a means of expression. When they stretch and spread their fingernails, they feel comfortable in the place or with the person.

Of course, it is always better that you train your cat to get used to filing its nails in certain places. That way you do not disable their survival instincts and a good coexistence will be possible.

Declawing and its problems

We are talking about a delicate surgical operation in which the last phalanges of the fingers are amputated, from which the nails emerge.

It requires general anesthesia because the pain would be excruciating for the animal. Both the retractile tendon and the soft tissue surrounding the entire assembly are also cut.

On the other hand, there are varied complications. From chronic and excessive pain, to chipped bones or new nail growth. In addition, they end up with anxiety and become aggressive.

In no case is it recommended and is even being penalized by law. So far, only 7 autonomous communities prohibit this practice: Andalusia, Aragon, Catalonia, Valencian Community, Community of Madrid, Murcia and Navarra.

In the rest there is no express allusion or it is allowed with the excuse of maintaining the peculiarities of some race.

Put yourself in their shoes, would you want a healthy hand or foot amputated?

10 Tips on how to cut a cat’s nails

Step 1.

The first thing to keep in mind is that the cat is the owner of its feelings and actions. It is an animal that chooses us as owners, not the other way around, therefore, it will not understand the act of cutting its nails and that is why you must understand that for it, it will not be pleasant in most cases. We also recommend creating this habit from a young age. Always with words, gestures and a kind tone of voice, full of sweetness. Otherwise it will understand it as a punishment and will run away.

Step 2.

Stroke their pads frequently. Express your affection towards them with this gesture, it will reassure them when you do the same with the intention of cutting its nails.

Step 3.

Wait for the moment when it is calm or sleepy. Take it gently and place it on your lap, just as you would with a delicate baby. The caresses and pampering must be continuous.

Step 4.

If you have the help of another person to prevent your kitten from moving, it must be someone you trust. Otherwise it could be disturbed and the toilet would have to be interrupted.

Step 5.

Use the most comfortable accessory for your cat and let them play with it, so that it is familiar. It can be a nail clipper, scissors or guillotine , among others.

Step 6.

Gently press the pad to release the nail. Do not squeeze because you will hurt them.

Step 7

Cut only the end of the nail. It is the part that is left over and is less pink in color.

Step 8.

If you go over it, you will cut the vein, it will bleed and it will hurt.

Step 9.

When in doubt, cut yourself short.

Step 10.

It may take several tries to finish grooming her nails.

What you should never do when trimming your cat’s nails

– Do not try to force your cat, you will only be able to alter it and make it avoid you.

– Don’t lose your cool, get irritated or yell. You will provoke the fear of the cat and a bad reaction.- Do not use inappropriate scissors, you will only damage it.

– Do not take more than 10 minutes in each attempt. Your cat won’t last much longer.

In conclusion…

Not all cats behave the same when counting their nails, there are quiet ones or those that are simply impossible.

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