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Clipping Nails and cleaning ears

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
How do you get a cat to sit still for you to clip their nails??? She doesn't just resist by pulling her paw away or even running off. Dori fights as though I am trying to do something terrible to her. It turns into an all out brawl, kicking, biting, etc. This has gone on since she was a little kitten. I tried only clipping a couple at a time, and giving her treats afterwards and that didn't seem to work. I do make sure that I do not clip down below the quick, I have never made her bleed. I usually just try to get the sharp tips off.

Also, I noticed that one of her ears is dirty inside. I know that you can't use q-tips to clean them. But how do you safely do it? And how do you know if it is just normal dirt or that it is not dirty from infection or from ear mites? Do most people just have their vets clean their cats ears?

Sorry for all the questions at once. Just want her to stay clean and well kept.
post #2 of 15
I try to clip my cats nails when they are sleeping. And I do it as quick as possible. Sometimes I can only get one paw done and I will come back later to do the other paw. With Zoey I have to get her when she is sitting quietly.. I crouch/sit over her and cross my legs behind me, talk to her softly and quickly clip her nails. Using force just makes them more mad lol.

I have never cleaned my cats ears. I actually have never seen them get dirty.. maybe your cat has ear mites? I think you could take a damp kleenex and just go over the inside lining with your finger (dont go in deep though).
post #3 of 15
Well, I dont' think there is anything wrong with not clipping nails if it's hard for you to do. Mynx has never had a nail clipped and he's perfectly fine and healthy. You just need to make sure you get them a good scratching post.

As far as ear cleaning, I've been under the assumtion that unless there is a problem they don't need to be cleaned. If it looks dirty you might want to go to the vet in case it's an ear infection. Allergies can sometimes make them get dirty too. The stuff they clean ears with is a quick evaporating liquid, not water and it's safer for a vet or someone trained to do it.
post #4 of 15
Thread Starter 
I have to clip her nails! If not it's dangerous for me. LOL! Every night when I sleep she climbs up on my pillow and kneads the top of my head and shoulders until she feels that it is comfortable enough for her to plop down and go to sleep. This can be very painful when her nails are long. I have tried to get her to sleep down near my legs or feet but 5 or 10 minutes after I move her she is right back to my head again. Also, if I disrupt her kneading in the middle of it if it does get painful she has to start all over again and I have to endure the agony twice as long! It's worth it to try and clip her nails, let her get her kneading out of the way and go to sleep so I can get on with my own sleep. I am sure I could try harder to kick this habit, maybe even lock her out of the room but she is just so darned cute and I can't bear to keep her away if she wants to be near me.
post #5 of 15
Luckily my cats don't care if I clip their nails. I thing the idea of doing it when they are sleeping is a good one, though. Even if you can only do a toe at a time, they sleep enough that you should be able to get them all in a day or two.
post #6 of 15
Put Dori in your lag and stroke her till she's relaxed. Then clip 1 nail at a time, working quickly. My boys hate it too but since they scuffle all the time I need to keep their nails clipped.

As for her ears, go to the pet supply store. They have ear cleaners. You can get wipes already moistened or a bottle of stuff to use on cotton balls. Just clean as far as you can see. Don't try to get anything deep. My Pipsqueek has always had dirty ears. Its not ear mites, just dirt. He's just my boy cat...he farts, burps and is less clean than a female would be.

post #7 of 15
I have a cat that actually has a skin thing. It's not a disease, but he gets EXTREMELY dirty ears and they have to be cleaned every week. He produces more wax in his ears and needs to have it cleaned out or he can't hear. There is a cleaner on the market that is a wipe, I just make sure to dry his ears our after cleaning or else he scratches his ears too much. This might be a job for you and a friend though. If your cat doesn't like nail clipping, ear cleaning won't go much better. If you can get a friend to hold the scruff of the cats neck, it usually keeps them still long enough to get what you need done, finished.
post #8 of 15
I clip my kitties claws when they are sleeping as well. I have not cleaned their ears though but I want to learno how.
post #9 of 15
Be careful cleaning her ears- you can do some real damage there if you don't know what you're doing. And never use q-tips, its far too easy for kitty to move at the wrong time and jab it deep in her ear.I don't clean my cats ears- the only time I did was when Onyx had ear mites as a kitten, and I cleaned them with a solution from the vet on a cotton ball.

As for clipping nails, I too do the kitties nails when they are sleeping. I sneak up and quickly clip just one paw. Before they realize whats going on, I'm done and have walked off. It takes a while to do all four paws on 3 kitties this way, but it works for us

Good luck!
post #10 of 15
I clip both of ours. I started when they were young so they'd be used to it. I sit them down on my lap with their back against my belly and do each foot. Enya, the female, will pin her ears back to show her dislike, but she'll usually sit through it without much trouble. Blaze doesn't like having his back feet done; I think he's ticklish.
With them on their back it's easier to hold them down.
post #11 of 15
Our older cat Boy's claws don't shed as well so the vet says we have to trim his claws. He gets very upset though.

Thanks for the advice above. I'll try when he's asleep.
post #12 of 15
I clipped Jeepers claws last night (only her front paws) all I did was wrap her in her favourite blanket and leave her paws sticking out, she did struggle a little until I started clipping them and then she calmed right down. It was as if she was saying 'oh so there is a point to this'.

I haven't done the back claws yet, I'm not sure if I need to, does anyone else only clip the front claws?
post #13 of 15
It always depends on the cat. Oscar, my cat, has no problem with clipping and he actually enjoys it. The sleeping advice is very good, that's how I started with Oscar. Then he woke up a few times and watched me clipping his nails, then he started purring and now he sits calmly, moving his tail and gladly opening his paws for me to take care of them!

On the other hand, I had to clip the nails of the neighbour's cat, that is not so patient and calm and would wake up in the tiniest sound. After hugging and rubbing him for a while, I held him strongly and carefully clipped the nails.

If you do it while your cat's awake, don't use yelling. Instead use force to sit him/her to one place but keep cuddling and saying nice things. It will be a torture at first, but your cat will get used to it and might learn to love it sooner or later!

Don't panic if you accidentaly cut the nail deep. It will hurt a lil and it will be a bad experience for your cat, but they will get over it. Keep some water and cotton close to clean the nail and stop bleeding. If the cat gets mad, continue clipping later, after praising him/her with their fav food or playing with them.
post #14 of 15

I usually clip only the front claws. Unless a cat has unusually long and injurious claws or is a cat prone to antagonize other cats, I don't bother with their rear claws.
post #15 of 15
Thread Starter 
Thank you all for the suggestions!

I tried clipping while she was sleeping. I managed to get 3 nails before she woke up. I sure got the evil eye when she realized what I was up to! I gave her a few treats and later when she fell back asleep I got the other 2 nails on that same paw, she woke up and I gave her treats again. I waited until the next day when she was asleep to do the other foot. I got the whole paw done, she woke up but let me finish, and then she casually got up and walked to the kitchen where her treats are.

So, I guess it's safe to assume that I better make sure I have treats after clipping the nails or I will have one angry kitty on my hands!
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