Claws....to clip or not to clip!

IMPORTANT: If your cat is in any distress or discomfort, please consult your own vet as your first priority.
Post Reply
User avatar
Mollysmummy
VIP Cat Chatter!
Posts: 264
Joined: Fri Aug 15, 2014 9:28 pm
No. of cats in household: 2
Location: Leicestershire

Claws....to clip or not to clip!

Post by Mollysmummy » Tue May 26, 2015 7:44 pm

Our youngest Kevin is 9 months now. So far he's an indoor cat as I just don't trust him not to go out the front into the road!

I've noticed that his claws seem to always be visible poking out of his fur, and he's always chewing on them to trim them. He does get caught on things sometimes, but not to the point of getting stuck.

How do I know if his claws are too long and need trimming? Our older cat Molly goes outside, and I think that does her claws good as I can never see them when they're retracted. We've got lots of scratching posts but Kevin seems to prefer the carpet!

I think I could trim them safely myself, I just don't want to do it unneccesarily.

User avatar
Lilith
VIP Cat Chatter!
Posts: 3647
Joined: Sat Dec 20, 2014 8:00 pm
No. of cats in household: 1
Location: West Yorks

Re: Claws....to clip or not to clip!

Post by Lilith » Tue May 26, 2015 9:01 pm

Hi there - I trim my two older cats' claws; they have a scratchy post but their claws still get too long and Mouse is prone to the dreaded ingrowing claws. I like the 'guillotine' type trimmer.

My own Molly is like your Kevin; she strops her claws and also bites off the old sheaths - but as a rule the claws stay long. However, being Moll, the wildie, she would hit the roof if I tried to trim them, so I let her deal with them by herself.

I think it is a good idea to be able to trim a cat's claws if it will let you, and it's dead easy - just taking off the very ends is usually enough, and you can see the pink 'quick' further down; it's easy to avoid. With my eldest, Emily, she's always loved lying in my lap and literally holding my hand - so I've taken advantage of that by playing with and stroking her paws and claws to get her used to them being handled. She still doesn't care for a clawy-cure much, but she bears with me lol.

User avatar
Mollysmummy
VIP Cat Chatter!
Posts: 264
Joined: Fri Aug 15, 2014 9:28 pm
No. of cats in household: 2
Location: Leicestershire

Re: Claws....to clip or not to clip!

Post by Mollysmummy » Tue May 26, 2015 9:14 pm

We call Kevin Mouse :)

I'm sure he would let me, he loves having his 'toe beans' kissed!! Results in instant purring every time! Our Molly would never let us do it; flea day is bad enough!! I think his claws would literally only need about 1-2mm off. I think I'm going to give it a go once and see if it makes a difference for him.

User avatar
Crewella
VIP Cat Chatter!
Posts: 3627
Joined: Thu Mar 13, 2014 9:59 pm
No. of cats in household: 6
Location: Hertfordshire

Re: Claws....to clip or not to clip!

Post by Crewella » Tue May 26, 2015 9:18 pm

I've never clipped a young, healthy cat's claws as they usually seem to manage to deal with them themselves, but I do my oldies. I also do my Basil's claws on his bad leg (he had a badly broken front leg when he came to me, which has set at a strange angle) as he doesn't seem able to get a good 'stropping' action going with that and they do get a bit long. I'm a mean and rotten mum, it never fails to make me laugh when I see Basil trying to do his front claws, his left paw ends up doing circles in the air like a kid with a sparkler!

As Lilith says, it's never a bad idea to get cats used to having things done, so if he is getting caught then give it a go. I just do the very ends with a regular pair of nail clippers.

Good luck!

User avatar
bobbys girl
VIP Cat Chatter!
Posts: 3174
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2014 8:58 pm
No. of cats in household: 5
Location: Co. Fermanagh

Re: Claws....to clip or not to clip!

Post by bobbys girl » Tue May 26, 2015 9:23 pm

What colour are his claws? The reason I ask is that our black cat Willow has white claws and they are very noticeable. These days she is mainly an indoor cat (only venturing out for an hour in nice weather). She sometimes gets 'fuzzy' claws and gets them caught in my clothes when she is padding (then all hell breaks loose :roll: ). She does seem to manage them herself, pulling off the fuzzy bits.

Our other blackie, Bob has black claws and we don't seem to notice them. How he manages to keep them so well (he only has one front leg) is a mystery to me.

On the few occasions I have trimmed their claws I use guillotine-type trimmers and just take off the very end - better too little than too much!

User avatar
Lilith
VIP Cat Chatter!
Posts: 3647
Joined: Sat Dec 20, 2014 8:00 pm
No. of cats in household: 1
Location: West Yorks

Re: Claws....to clip or not to clip!

Post by Lilith » Tue May 26, 2015 9:38 pm

Lol Mollysmummy - there'll be another one having a 'Mousey-cure' then?

Hey Bobbys Girl - I've lived with lots of black cats - and I've never ever seen black claws! With dogs, yes, and the quick's a devil to judge, but cats, no. I wonder is it an Irish cat thing? I'm fascinated.

User avatar
Mollysmummy
VIP Cat Chatter!
Posts: 264
Joined: Fri Aug 15, 2014 9:28 pm
No. of cats in household: 2
Location: Leicestershire

Re: Claws....to clip or not to clip!

Post by Mollysmummy » Tue May 26, 2015 9:50 pm

Kevs claws are whitish, and I've just had a look at Molly's and while they're not black they're definitely darker, which is probably why I don't notice them as much! That and the fact that she's not cuddly at all, she even hates being picked up :cry: whereas Kev loves a morning snuggle in bed on my chest with a paw on my face!

User avatar
bobbys girl
VIP Cat Chatter!
Posts: 3174
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2014 8:58 pm
No. of cats in household: 5
Location: Co. Fermanagh

Re: Claws....to clip or not to clip!

Post by bobbys girl » Tue May 26, 2015 9:59 pm

Lilith wrote:Hey Bobbys Girl - I've lived with lots of black cats - and I've never ever seen black claws!
Well they are probably more blue than black. But you just don't see them. Willows claws are very white in comparison and often show up against her coat.

User avatar
Sue Goddard
VIP Cat Chatter!
Posts: 94
Joined: Mon Dec 08, 2014 9:32 am

Re: Claws....to clip or not to clip!

Post by Sue Goddard » Wed May 27, 2015 8:44 am

I have always trimmed my cats claws when they get a bit too long and too razor sharp..you usually know when they are too long as they catch them on clothing and carpets etc...I use a small nail clipper ( the parallel closing type) does them no harm and as the chat says you can see the quick and you'd never cut that far anyway....
Although my last two cats hated it and made a fuss..I've just done our new boy Mouse's claws this morning and he didn't bat an eyelash..now to find Thomas....! up to no good in the garden as usual.

btw: How many of you wear trousers with snags in 'em?...I've never been able to keep a pair pristine..!!

bbtw: How do you get the smiles onto the text???

User avatar
Crewella
VIP Cat Chatter!
Posts: 3627
Joined: Thu Mar 13, 2014 9:59 pm
No. of cats in household: 6
Location: Hertfordshire

Re: Claws....to clip or not to clip!

Post by Crewella » Wed May 27, 2015 9:42 am

For smilies I click one of the ones on the left of the 'post a reply' screen and it goes wherever your cursor is. Or you can type them in manually, for example 'colon' and 'close brackets' together make a smiley smilie, like this : ) but without the space in between :)

Oh, and yep, everything I own is snagged. If I value anything, I take it off as soon as I get home. :roll:

User avatar
Mollysmummy
VIP Cat Chatter!
Posts: 264
Joined: Fri Aug 15, 2014 9:28 pm
No. of cats in household: 2
Location: Leicestershire

Re: Claws....to clip or not to clip!

Post by Mollysmummy » Wed May 27, 2015 10:03 am

Everything is snagged!! Clothes, bed linen, curtains..... Milky never ever uses her claws unless she has to, but Kevin loves a good rip of trousers!!

User avatar
bobbys girl
VIP Cat Chatter!
Posts: 3174
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2014 8:58 pm
No. of cats in household: 5
Location: Co. Fermanagh

Re: Claws....to clip or not to clip!

Post by bobbys girl » Wed May 27, 2015 5:59 pm

Sue Goddard wrote:btw: How many of you wear trousers with snags in 'em?...I've never been able to keep a pair pristine..!!
I wear jeans or trackie-bottoms, so no problems there. :D However I have a nice collection of 'loopy' cardies! :roll:

I've had a close look at Bob's claws, (you should have seen his face, 'Mum, what ARE you doing?') they are actually translucent. When I held his little paw up to the light, I could almost see through them. Against his black coat they are black. :?

Willow's claws are quite a chalky-white in comparison.

hgale
VIP Cat Chatter!
Posts: 459
Joined: Thu Mar 13, 2014 12:51 pm
No. of cats in household: 1

Re: Claws....to clip or not to clip!

Post by hgale » Wed May 27, 2015 6:08 pm

I'm lucky - Denver deals with his claws himself - but my last late cat Mischa (still very much missed) was completely different! As she was so old, she hardly went out so her claws needed trimming - but the only way was during her regular Vet visits as it took 4 of us holding her down while the Vet wielded the trimmers (plus towel and heavy gloves). And the noise she made - injections? No problem. Taking her temperature? Not a peep. Clippers - get your ear muffs and "cat language bleeper" machine ready! I was always amazed that people were still in the waiting room when we came out.

User avatar
Lilith
VIP Cat Chatter!
Posts: 3647
Joined: Sat Dec 20, 2014 8:00 pm
No. of cats in household: 1
Location: West Yorks

Re: Claws....to clip or not to clip!

Post by Lilith » Wed May 27, 2015 9:56 pm

Truly never ever seen a cat with dark claws; Bob sounds really cool.

Has anyone read Paul Gallico's 'Jennie'? It was published in 1950 and is of course very old fashioned as to style and outlook, but it paints an intuitive (and heartbreaking) picture of what it must be like to be a stray. The tabby heroine boasts that she is descended from Egyptian aristocracy; she has black pads, not pink. I've never seen black pads on a tabby either, but PG must have - apparently he was a great cat person :)

User avatar
bobbys girl
VIP Cat Chatter!
Posts: 3174
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2014 8:58 pm
No. of cats in household: 5
Location: Co. Fermanagh

Re: Claws....to clip or not to clip!

Post by bobbys girl » Thu May 28, 2015 9:32 am

Lilith wrote:Truly never ever seen a cat with dark claws;
I think because they are translucent they reflect surrounding colours. He's black and often sits on our black sofa. Perhaps if I stood him on a bright red/green/blue/ surface his claws would reflect those colours - the world's first chameleon claws - now that's one for the books! He really looks after them. They are very shiny!

User avatar
Mollysmummy
VIP Cat Chatter!
Posts: 264
Joined: Fri Aug 15, 2014 9:28 pm
No. of cats in household: 2
Location: Leicestershire

Re: Claws....to clip or not to clip!

Post by Mollysmummy » Thu May 28, 2015 9:48 am

Kevin's claws are translucent, whereas Molly's are a lot thicker and darker, almost a grey colour. She's outside a lot so it's probably dirt and more vigorous use of them that makes them look darker! Hers aren't anywhere near as sharp as Kevin's either.

User avatar
Crewella
VIP Cat Chatter!
Posts: 3627
Joined: Thu Mar 13, 2014 9:59 pm
No. of cats in household: 6
Location: Hertfordshire

Re: Claws....to clip or not to clip!

Post by Crewella » Fri May 29, 2015 12:28 am

I remember reading Jennie, and Thomasina. I still use the phrase 'when in doubt, wash' to my gang! :)

User avatar
Lilith
VIP Cat Chatter!
Posts: 3647
Joined: Sat Dec 20, 2014 8:00 pm
No. of cats in household: 1
Location: West Yorks

Re: Claws....to clip or not to clip!

Post by Lilith » Fri May 29, 2015 7:23 am

Crewella wrote:I remember reading Jennie, and Thomasina. I still use the phrase 'when in doubt, wash' to my gang! :)
LOL! That line is a classic - and they do! :lol:

User avatar
bobbys girl
VIP Cat Chatter!
Posts: 3174
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2014 8:58 pm
No. of cats in household: 5
Location: Co. Fermanagh

Re: Claws....to clip or not to clip!

Post by bobbys girl » Fri May 29, 2015 8:31 am

Crewella wrote:I remember reading Jennie, and Thomasina. I still use the phrase 'when in doubt, wash' to my gang!
Not really on thread, but, this morning in our house it should read 'when in doubt find mum and get her to comb the cxxp out of you.' When I got up this morning Bob looked like Sonic the hedgehog. I think he's been in the bog (he doesn't smell bad, just peaty) I had to comb it out of him (the brush wasn't up to it).There is now a fine dust of peat EVERYWHERE. Not surprisied he didn't want to wash himself. :roll: I'd better get the hoover out.

Post Reply