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Thick Claws

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Since I have gotten my cats I have clipped their claws. I do it more for my tender cuttable flesh then for the carpet and the couch. But recently I have noticed that a couple of their claws have grown in thick and dull. They are no longer slender and stiletto like, but almost well thick is the only way to describe it.

They don't seem to bother them as all of my cats are indoor only cats, and I haven't cut these claws as it makes me hesitant to do so. (I have seen claws splinter before, and I don't want to risk that, because that does bother kitty). But what causes it and how do I care for these blunt claws? Or should I even be concerned?
post #2 of 9
I've seen that before too...do you're cats still exhibit the scratching behavior?

They normally shed claw sheaths, and sometimes when you are clipping their nails, these sheaths stay on and build up if they don't scratch at their designated areas...

Spotz
post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 
Yea, they still scratch. I have a three tier cat tree in the living room that they have clawed so much that now chunks of carpet fabric has started falling out. Mischief, my cat omega, prefers to climb up to the mid point and scratch at it while hanging there. How she manages to keep on the post while scratching is a feat I never get tired of watching. And they all take to various bits of furniture if I am not giving them ample attention.

Is this build up harmful to them? Is there away to make it 'normal'?
post #4 of 9
My 16 year old cat gets that on his claws, and it does not seem to hurt anything. It will occasionally peel away, leaving a normal claw showing. He gets brown gunk that I suspect is ear wax around the base of his claws, and sometimes when I clean that off, the excess claw layers come with it. It does not bother him, and the vet tech that looked at it did not think it was a problem.
post #5 of 9
Sphinx's claws are like that too on all his nails. He doesn't use anything to scratch on though - we have various types of scratchers. It could be because he's old and somewhat arthritic that he finds scratching hard to do. We have the vet do it every 6-8 weeks and at the same time she can check his heart and IBD and any other concerning problems. The only thing she thought is he could have a vitamin deficit and suggested we give him suppliments on top of what is already in his food.
post #6 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xastion
Yea, they still scratch. I have a three tier cat tree in the living room that they have clawed so much that now chunks of carpet fabric has started falling out. Mischief, my cat omega, prefers to climb up to the mid point and scratch at it while hanging there. How she manages to keep on the post while scratching is a feat I never get tired of watching. And they all take to various bits of furniture if I am not giving them ample attention.

Is this build up harmful to them? Is there away to make it 'normal'?
As far as I can tell the "buildup" isn't harmful at all, just seems to be a natural thing.

What I usually do when I run across this situation, is when I'm trimming the claws, if one "splinters", I just take the clippers and use them like tweezers and grab the outer "splinters" and gently remove/trim them. This usually thins the claw back to a more natural looking shape, without any extra stress on the kitty.

[Note: I use human clippers, as it's my opinion that they are the easiest for cats]

In my experience, if the cat is used to you clipping his claws, then he will be patient enough with you, and will also let you know when you've done enough.

Spotz
post #7 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spotz
They normally shed claw sheaths, and sometimes when you are clipping their nails, these sheaths stay on and build up if they don't scratch at their designated areas...
Spotz
I've usually seen this in older cats who aren't as active. You'll still want to trim those thickened claws, because if they get too long they can grow back around into the cat's paw. If you've had trouble with the nails splitting, make sure to use a new, sharp pair of nail clippers. Clippers can become dull after extended use & not trim as well, crushing (splitting) the nail rather than cutting it. The best kind (IMO) form a circle around the nail & cut as evenly as possible - they look like a little pair of scissors, with a circular end, and are marketed as cat nail clippers. I've tried using human clippers before but they always seem to cause nail splintering.

You may find as you trim the thickened claws that you'll see some of the old layers of claw sheath start to separate - I usually pull those off (very gently).

http://www.wmtw.com/global/story.asp...Type=Printable
post #8 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xastion
Since I have gotten my cats I have clipped their claws. I do it more for my tender cuttable flesh then for the carpet and the couch. But recently I have noticed that a couple of their claws have grown in thick and dull. They are no longer slender and stiletto like, but almost well thick is the only way to describe it.

They don't seem to bother them as all of my cats are indoor only cats, and I haven't cut these claws as it makes me hesitant to do so. (I have seen claws splinter before, and I don't want to risk that, because that does bother kitty). But what causes it and how do I care for these blunt claws? Or should I even be concerned?
Just and uneducated thought!! Can cats get fungal nails like people do? I believe ringworm can affect the nails as well. Just in case you don't know ringworm is NOT a worm. It just looks "wormlike" under a microscope.
post #9 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by tuxedokitties
I've usually seen this in older cats who aren't as active. You'll still want to trim those thickened claws, because if they get too long they can grow back around into the cat's paw. If you've had trouble with the nails splitting, make sure to use a new, sharp pair of nail clippers. Clippers can become dull after extended use & not trim as well, crushing (splitting) the nail rather than cutting it. The best kind (IMO) form a circle around the nail & cut as evenly as possible - they look like a little pair of scissors, with a circular end, and are marketed as cat nail clippers. I've tried using human clippers before but they always seem to cause nail splintering.

You may find as you trim the thickened claws that you'll see some of the old layers of claw sheath start to separate - I usually pull those off (very gently).
Never had the full nail split, only the unshed claw sheaths.

The clippers I use are:

http://revlon.com/product.asp?Produc...1&Mode=catalog

I've seen people use the standard fingernail clippers before, but I don't like how those work for delicate work such as clipping kitty claws. I tend to trim the nails very short (no blood!!) so I like the level of precision that the clippers I use give. Plus they have a lifetime sharpness warranty, they get dull, I send them in...wallah...they come back sharp as new.

Spotz
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