How to clip a cat's nails without picking them up?

I just brought my new cat home yesterday, but already the old cat has stopped showing aggression towards the door and her scent so I would like to move on to the next step of introducing them soon, allowing them to see each other through a crack in the door. I'd like to clip both of their nails before this happens so they can't do too much damage if a paw slips through the door. Unfortunately the shelter neglected to clip the new cat's nails before she left, and she's not comfortable with me picking her up yet. What's a good way to do this without stressing her out too much?

Asked by Sake on May 22nd 2013 in Home Grooming
Report this question Get this question's RSS feed Send this question to a friend


  • Cast your vote for which answer you think is best!


Izadore (Izzie)

Most cats, even those who are established members of a family, REALLY don't like to have their feet touched. And some also resist being picked up b/c they don't like the feeling of "dangling" in mid-air and not being in control. When I clip Izzie's claws, I usually am "allowed" to do one or 2 an evening. Not paws--claws. If things are going as well as you say and the "Old Cat" is already showing acceptance of the newbie, you may not have to worry about it. Cats also use teeth so if there's a melee, which it doesn't look like there will be in your case, there will be biting as well as clawing. My Lizzie will bop Izzie on his head with her paw just to get her point across, no claws, and it works. Shelters do as good a job as they can with vetting, but you may want to consider taking the newbie to your own vet next week just to intro her to them and them to her and to make sure all is well. At that time, have them do her claws.

Izadore (Izzie) answered on 5/23/13. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


For both my cats, I wrapped them up in a big blanket. I figure this could be dangerous if you make it too tight, so talk to your vet before doing this. I was taught how to do it by a vet. I take my kitty burrito, with both front or back paws out, sit on the floor cross legged and cradle them in my lap. In between ends they get a few treats. Very special for nail clipping only treats. The new guy who I call my street tough, dislikes nails very much. We do a few claws or one paw at a time. With hours in between. Where as Ghost, sits with no blanket for his round now, and sometimes makes with all 20 nails before getting up. that took a year. Lots of patience! Good luck =^.^=

Ghost answered on 5/27/13. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer