Introduction: Trimming a Cat's Nails
Trimming a cat’s nails is something that can be done at home. The process seems simple enough, and for the most part it is. However, many cat parents inadvertently injure their furry felines by using incorrect techniques or tools. I am going to provide step-by-step instructions on how to correctly approach and implement the process of trimming your cat’s nails.
Step 1: HAVE THE NAIL TRIMMER IN HAND AND READY TO USE
It is best to have the nail trimmer ready to use. Make sure you are using the proper trimmers; they are specifically designed with spherical blades to match the shape of the nail. They can be found at any pet store as well as the pet section in any department store.
Step 2: APPROACH YOUR CAT PROPERLY
Wait until your cat is calm and relaxed. Trying to trim while he/she is anxious will most likely get you nowhere.
Step 3: MAKE SURE YOUR CAT IS COMFORTABLE
Try placing your cat in a sitting position on your lap. If he/she does not like this do not use force. Let him/her lay on the floor or wherever he/she is comfortable; encourage relaxation with gentle petting. Be patient, this step may take some time.
Step 4: BE GENTLE WITH THOSE PAWS
Some cats aren’t comfortable having their paws touched. Take your cat’s paw in your hand and gently massage it between your thumb and index fingers. If he/she pulls the paw away, keep trying. Again, patience is emphasized.
Step 5: LOOK FOR THE QUICK
Once the cat is at ease, gently press down on the toe pad to extend the nail and look for the part that is pink. This is called the quick and SHOULD NOT be cut.
Warning: Cutting the quick can damage blood vessels and cause bleeding. Be careful!
Image obtained from: adoptapet.com
Step 6: SNIP THAT NAIL
Take the trimmers and enclose the blades around the nail; try to trim the very tip of the nail.
Step 7: SNIP ANOTHER…AND THEN ANOTHER…AND THEN ANOTHER
Repeat steps 5 and 6 for each nail on each paw. If at any point during the process your cat starts to resist, do not force him/her to continue. Let him/her go and try again later to avoid injury to yourself or the cat.