Categories: claw caps

An Occasion When Cat Claw Caps Are Useful and Practical

By Anonymous

Okay, I know this is an old discussion, but for those of you against claw caps, I’ll tell you my current situation. And please, if you don’t agree with my choice, try to be a civil adult and refrain from the insults and name calling that I saw in earlier posts (note from Admin: the author is referring to an article about claw caps written by Finn Frode). And yes I am American and absolutely loathe the idea of declawing. I don’t have one bit of care for the state of our furniture. We have 2 boys that are very rough n tumble & I’m pretty sure that the majority of the damage is from them, not the puppies or cats.

Claw caps. NOTE: THE PHOTO IS FOR ILLUSTRATIVE PURPOSES ONLY.

We have 3 cats, 2 bulldog puppies, and recently discovered a cat hanging around outside. We live out in the woods in a very rural area, so seeing a cat out here, we thought for a few weeks that it was from our neighbor’s place. A couple days ago I guess he decided that we were ok & approached the house, where I realized he was EXTREMELY hungry. I fed him & he was so sweet & loving and had no fear coming up and rubbing all over our legs. He was healthy looking but way too thin. The only thing we could think of was that he’d been dumped out in the country, probably by someone who inherited cats from a deceased family member, (a mommy cat showed up at our neighbor’s @ the same time).

Sadly that sort of situation happens a lot out here. We took him to our vet and he was too terrified of a carrier so we wrapped him in a towel to transport him, handled the exam & shots beautifully, and we figured he just needed time to recover & realize he wouldn’t be abandoned again. We’re keeping him mostly in a separate room from the other fur babies while he gets used to our home & doesn’t get too stressed out. We also plan on getting him fixed once he’s gotten more comfortable in a few days or so. And he & our older boy who is autistic have made an amazing connection. J. will just lay near Percy and show him his lego collection or read stories to him.

But in the past 2 days, in the middle of being lovey, he’s turned & scratched our 9yr old child badly. We keep telling our kid to go slow, but he can’t seem to remember when Percy is being so sweet. I think it’s that A. gets too enthusiastic, forgets, and starts treating him like our other non-traumatized cats. Getting him neutered will probably help some, but he’s been thru an extremely rough time so needs time to fully heal mentally.

So these are our options. 1) Put him back outside & let the coyotes get him in about a week or so. 2) Send him to a shelter that is already overpopulated where they might have to put him to sleep if he isn’t adopted into an understanding home. 3) Just go ahead and have him put to sleep ourselves. 4) Keep him, but get him declawed so that he doesn’t hurt the boys or our other animals. 5) Keep him, but have our vet put the claw caps on him until he fully trusts us & knows that he is safe.

Personally, I’m going to go with the non-permanent caps. Yes it seems like it would be uncomfortable, but given his limited options it’s also his best chance. It might take years before we can stop using them, or we may never be able to. It all depends on how badly he was traumatized by losing his family and then being left in an area that was so dangerous and scary.

So that’s my story. Ya’ll can agree or not, it’s your right. But it won’t change what will happen. Don’t judge all Americans by just a few. Yes, he’s probably going to lose full use of his claws for however long, but he’ll be alive and in a loving home where he’ll be able to heal.



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Michael Broad

Hi, I'm a 71-year-old retired solicitor (attorney in the US). Before qualifying I worked in many jobs including professional photography. I have a girlfriend, Michelle. I love nature, cats and all animals. I am concerned about their welfare.

View Comments

  • I agree with all the comments so far. I am strongly against declawing, but claw cups are an acceptable way to handle certain situations and seem like the best solution in the situation described in the article.

  • One other reason for claw caps. The elderly have very fragile skin and just the playful movements of the cats and accidental tearing of the elderly person's skin can be harmful to the human. But to deprive the cat of his or her claws and the elderly person of the company of a beloved companion can be traumatic for both.

    • Yes, well said and thanks for that Susan. I think everyone should be flexible in their thinking but always have the well being amd welfare of cats in mind.

  • Clipping your indoor cats claws will always be the number one way to mitigate damage. And come on folks. If you have pets you bought into some wear and tear on the old homestead.
    Only clip the front claws. An escapee with clipped fronts and intact back claws can still climb. You may have to on occasion trim the backs. a normal healthy cat will keep the backs rounded down.
    Buy a high quality easy to hold trimmer or nail clipper. You want a clean slice not a chew through or crushing.
    I don't know about tips but trimming the front claws does not interfere with your cats natural desire to stretch and sharpen on their posts or other scratchers.
    tips are better than shelter dumping, just dumping or euthanasia.

    • Excellent comment ME. The author of the article could have mentoioned what you have mentioned in your comment. I am not sure she/he considered trimming claws. Perhaps it was felt to be impractical but I doubt it.

      • From what I read, you need to clip the claws before you put the caps on, so clearly in the particular case described it wasn't enough. Maybe the author of the article couldn't do it himself/herself or maybe the cat managed to still scratch the baby.

        The issue with clipped claws is while it protects the furniture and to a certain degree skin, I found that if a cat with clipped claws applies sufficient force, he can still break the skin.

  • I agree with both Anonymous and The Frugal Exerciser. The claw caps are appropriate as they solve the inherent problems of keeping this cat inside, where he is safe.

    While I agree that "some" immunocompromised individuals need to be kept safe from cat scratches and/or bites, there are alternatives to declawing. Claw caps are one alternative.

    • I agree with you Franny. Under certain circumstance claw caps can be appropriate. Personally, I think they should be a last resort solution and declawing is obviously completely out of the question as it is...I won't describe what I think about declawing ;)

      • Michael, I totally agree with Anonymus, The Frugal Exercise, Franny and yourself .. and ABSOLUTELY NOT -- DECLAWING will NEVER be an OPTION in my books -- or on my cats!!♥♥♥

      • I tend to agree with you about claw caps being a last resort, Michael. Clipping cats claws really works, however it ideally should be started early, which is not possible with many cats.

        I start very slowly with an adult cat, and often stop after clipping one or two claws - *before* the cat starts to fidget and squirm. I always give the cat some loving scritches then, along with a treat afterward. Eventually s/he learns that claw clipping is painless, and actually makes it more comfortable to walk. Some cats even learn to look forward to their claw clipping sessions. :-D

        • I agree again Franny. If it is possible, all cat guardians should clip their cat's claws at an early age to acclimatise them to it. It should be an obligatory part of cat ownershp if the person hates scratching. Scratching has never bothered me. Although I do trim claws from time to time.

  • Do what you have to do. He is in a loving home which is the most important thing.

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