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Is it normal for kitten to get upset at clipping claws?

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
My 11 week old kitten that I got on Thursday is a very sweet one; loves to be with people and get a good cuddle. However, I tried to clip her claws today (not that she needed it, they were already short; but I figured I wanted her to get used to it being done on a regular basis) and she got quite upset by it. Especially when I brought the clippers over to her paw, she got squirmy and meowed in an upset way and bit me. Not hard, but still wanted to show me she was upset by it.

I guess I'm a little nervous about our future clippings; I was not successful at getting it done. Got three claws done I think, that's all. Does it get easier? Is this typical for kittens or is it more typical for a cat that is not going to tolerate it easily?

I guess I just want to know what to expect.

And also; how often do you recommend clipping? I am mostly wondering for the sake of her getting used to it; should I do one claw every day, or all of them in one sitting every couple of weeks?

My 2 yro cat has all of her claws and they remain long. I just didn't get her used to it as a kitten and I'm not really wanting to even try it with her. It's not needed anyway; she uses her scratching post very well and nothing else. So I can't say I have a whole lot of experience, though I have done it in the past a little bit.
post #2 of 19
Yes, it's normal. One of my girls puts up with it and is good about letting me do a trim but the other continues to hate it. She cries and squirms and bites. Just a reall PITA. I've had them since they were 8 weeks old.
post #3 of 19
Yes its typical and yes you will get better at it ONLY if you take charge. Try wrapping her in a towel and doing one paw at a time. I normally start nail clipping about 3-4 weeks of age and do it on a weekly basis.

Be gentle but firm when holding onto the paw.

IMO you really SHOULD be clipping the older cat - whether or not you want to. You don't want any accidents between the cats to happen and you don't want the cat to catch their nail on something and have it ripped out!
post #4 of 19
Did you show her the clippers first? Click them in front of her so she's used to the sound? Even let her play and gnaw on them a little, and rub her scent on them.
That way they're familiar to her and that's one less thing to spook her. Play with her feet a lot while you're cuddling her, get her used to the feeling of you spreading her toes and pushing the claws out.
Try just clipping a claw or two while cuddling her, when she starts to get upset let her sniff the clippers and then distract her with some petting. Then try again.
IMO it's better to let it just be part of cuddling with the cat then a big ordeal where you have to go get the towel, stressing both yourself and the cat.

^Of course with older cats it's a bit harder as they didn't used to it as as a kitten.
post #5 of 19
Thread Starter 
I tried again today while she was dozing on my dd's lap. It went very well this time. I didn't squeeze her paw as hard; maybe that's what bothered her the most? I just gently pushed it out until I was able to snip the tips. She did try to pull her paw away now and then, but I definitely noticed much more protesting if I squeezed too hard.
So I think it will work out; just be more gentle and do it when she's sleeping or very calm. Yesterday she was wide awake, so maybe I picked the wrong time.
Thank you!
post #6 of 19
Glad things are better. I train my guys to lay on their backs in my lap and hold them still and clip nails. Ling's been getting her's done since 5 weeks old and still protests every time (tho not as much any more).

Charlie sometimes purrs when I'm doing his
post #7 of 19
I haven't yet done it successfully with my newly-adopted ~2 year old cat. I tried using a towel, but the only result was that my cat now freaks and runs away whenever she sees me holding a towel, blanket, pillow, etc. I'm going to try it while she's sleepy, but she always seems to perk up when I approach or touch her.
post #8 of 19
I watched this really great video about nail clipping....
http://www.felinevideos.vet.cornell....ws/index.shtml


One thing I read about grooming cats (teeth brushing, nail clipping, etc) is to pamper them so that they associate the ritual with treats & love. Maybe once a day for the next few weeks you can get out the clippers and let her see them while you feed her a great treat. Start associating the clipper noise & touch with petting & treats. Eventually she should be able to relax enough for the clipping to happen but it may take several weeks & baby steps. (so said the guide I was reading)

Hope that helps!
post #9 of 19
Completely normal. My cats squirmed at first too. It was helped by being gentle and showing them that nail clipping is not that bad. Some people force them but that's just not the way I do things. Of course there's the introduction of the clippers accociated by petting, play, and other good things. I would clip one nail at a time quickly and then play with a string or give them a little treat, and as soon as they learned nail clipping is not a bad experience they got better some.
post #10 of 19
My girl is a pain in most respects, but I stick her between my legs and clip and put on soft paws and all she does is yowl and look at me. I would clip her nails a little every single day and showed her no matter how much a fight she put up it WOULD happen.
post #11 of 19
Well, I just stuck my cat between my legs and clipped her nails. She didn't enjoy it very much, but she seems fine now that it's over. I may try putting Soft Claws on her soon.
post #12 of 19
I clip Petrie's and he's not too keen on it and will try to fight me about me.. I just get my boyfriend to hold onto him while I snip them quick.. But Petrie only has 7 nails so I don't have 10 to do...
post #13 of 19
My kitten is 6 months old, and I have been clipping his nails by doing one or two at a time (or three, if possible). Today, he let me know that he didn't want me to clip his back nails by grabbing my hands - but he didn't use his claws. I waited until he was tired and almost asleep, and he 'gave in' and allowed me to clip two nails. I am a newbie with cats, and I have decided that, at least with this kitten, you just have to wait for them to be in the mood. On the other hand, my Boston Terrier won't let me even think
about touching her nails because I accidently cut one too short when she was a puppy So, I take her to the groomer. It's important to be very careful not to cut the nails too short because, if you do, that's the end!!!
Good luck!
post #14 of 19
IMO you still should be in charge of beginning and ending the session. I would have waited a min, talked to him and then proceed to clip the remaining nails.

Once you have a routine (weekly), then nail clipping all 4 feet is done within 2-3 mins at the most
post #15 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldenKitty45 View Post
IMO you still should be in charge of beginning and ending the session. I would have waited a min, talked to him and then proceed to clip the remaining nails.

Once you have a routine (weekly), then nail clipping all 4 feet is done within 2-3 mins at the most
Thanks! I'll try that. I'll also make sure that I don't press too hard when trying to get the claw to show...
post #16 of 19
Never really paid any attention to pressure - I just do it. Kinda like you have to stop and think about things

The WORSE cats to do are longhairs, cause its hard to see that claw between the fur and you have to push back the fur, then push out the nail and clip it with them being wiggly all the time.

The ONLY cat I ever had a major issue in nail clipping was a Turkish Angora - took me 2 days to do him as he was so uncooperative and I was skilled at nail clipping when I owned him!
post #17 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldenKitty45 View Post
Glad things are better. I train my guys to lay on their backs in my lap and hold them still and clip nails. Ling's been getting her's done since 5 weeks old and still protests every time (tho not as much any more).

Charlie sometimes purrs when I'm doing his

That's what I do and it goes very well. They are used to it.
post #18 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldenKitty45 View Post
Never really paid any attention to pressure - I just do it. Kinda like you have to stop and think about things

The WORSE cats to do are longhairs, cause its hard to see that claw between the fur and you have to push back the fur, then push out the nail and clip it with them being wiggly all the time.

The ONLY cat I ever had a major issue in nail clipping was a Turkish Angora - took me 2 days to do him as he was so uncooperative and I was skilled at nail clipping when I owned him!
My kitten is, I think, mostly Ragdoll. He has very furry paws, and it's imperative that I 'push' to allow the nail to show. Of course, I'm very inexperienced and know little about [u]any[u] type of paw. He's a rescue, so I really have no idea what breeds are in his genes. I do know that he has medium hair length and has hair under and between his paws. I was wondering whether I should trim the hair under his paws, which drags on the floor?
Thanks for the advice! I'll keep practicing!
post #19 of 19
No need to trim the hair around the foot pads, unless its better for you to get to the nails till you have more experience
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