Trimming a cat’s nails is a grooming task that every cat owner dreads, however, using the best cat nail clippers can go a long way toward making it a task that’s fast and simple, on both you and your cat. If you’ve tried cat nail clippers in the past and it was anything but a pleasant experience, then you may just have been using the wrong type of clippers. If you don’t know how to choose the right type and style of clippers for your cat, then this buyer’s guide will be invaluable. I’ve also tested out many of the best-selling models and have chosen four pairs that have what it takes to cleanly and smoothly clip through even the toughest claws. Below, you’ll find a comparison chart that lists each of the models on my list, their best features, and how they rated.
Cat Nail Clippers Comparison Chart
Pet Republique Cat Nail Clippers
These pro-quality nail clippers feature the popular scissor style, which makes them easier to grip, so you can get in there and get the job done, even if your cat is struggling. These clippers can also be used on puppies, guinea pigs, kittens, and chinchillas. They’re covered by a ninety-day money-back guarantee and a four-year warranty, which is pretty impressive. The blades are sharp, made out of stainless steel and designed to last for years.
- Four-year warranty
- Ninety-day money-back guarantee
- Large grip
- Stainless steel blades
- Smaller nails can slip between the blades
The larger grips make the scissors easier to handle and maneuver, improving user comfort and control. When you purchase this product, the manufacturer will donate fifteen percent of the profits to the American Animal Rescue Society, so not only will you end up with a durable pair of clippers that are guaranteed to last for years, but you’ll also help out animals in need. This will be a big incentive to buy for many animal lovers. Durable, comfortable to use, and equipped with blades that can hold an edge longer, these clippers are a great buy and a steal for the price.
Gonicc Dog & Cat Pets Nail Clippers
These guillotine clippers come equipped with non-slip handles that are ergonomically designed, comfortable, and lightweight, giving you more control when you cut. The blades are made out of high-quality stainless steel and are designed to hold an edge for longer. The safety clasp will prevent young children from using the clippers. This model also comes with a free nail file that can be stored inside the handle, making it highly accessible and the perfect tool to take care of any ragged nails.
- Free nail file
- Ergonomic handle
- Blades are made out of stainless steel
- Safety clasp
- People with larger hands may find these clippers difficult to use.
If you’re looking for a versatile pair of clippers, one that you can use on cats of all sizes, puppies, and small dog breeds, then this versatile pair by Gonicc delivers. The ergonomic grips, combined with the sharp blade design allows you to safely and efficiently cut your cat’s nails, easily, and comfortably.
JOFUYU Cat Nail Clippers
These clippers are recommended by vets and groomers, and animal trainers. They can be used on cats, guinea pigs, sugar gliders, chinchillas, hamsters, ferrets, puppies, rabbits, kittens, and small breed dogs. The stainless-steel blades are thick and designed to last for years. The blades feature a semi-circular design that matches the shape of your pet’s nail, making this model very beginner friendly.
The ergonomic rubberized grip prevents your hand from slipping, while promoting user comfort, allowing you to trim your pet’s nails comfortably.
- Ergonomic handle
- Stainless steel blades
- Lifetime money-back guarantee
- Sharpening the blades can be difficult
These nail trimmers by Jofuyu are built tough, comfortable to hold, and designed to hold an edge longer. The comfortable non-slip grip will prevent the trimmers from slipping during use, a must-have safety feature that you won’t find on many models. These trimmers are also covered by a lifetime money-back warranty, and a 100% satisfaction guarantee, giving pet owners every reason to buy.
Boshel Cat Nail Clippers
These nail clippers are ergonomically designed and can be used on cats, kittens, puppies, and small breed dogs. These clippers can deliver precision cuts, thanks to the semicircular, stainless steel angled blade with the razor-sharp edges. These trimmers are safe to use and designed with rubberized handles that remain securely in your hands to prevent accidental cuts and nicks, while ensuring ease of use.
- Rubberized handle
- Stainless steel angled blade
- Ergonomic design low price
- Low price
- Small grip
These easy to use beginner-friendly clippers may look small, but they come equipped with powerful blades and handles that make them easy to maneuver and comfortable to use. Additionally, the manufacturer also offers a hassle-free money-back guarantee, so if you’re unsatisfied with the quality of these trimmers, you can return them for a full refund within thirty days, no questions asked.
Shiny Pet Nail Clippers
These trimmers are small, safe, and simple to use. They’re perfect as general nail clippers for cats, kittens, puppies, and small breed dogs. They come equipped with an ergonomic handle and stainless-steel blades, and an instructional eBook that you can download on your PC and smartphone. This eBook will walk you through the nail clipping process, so you can easily and efficiently cut your pet’s nails and avoid any mistakes that can cause discomfort.
- Free eBook
- Ergonomic grip
- Stainless steel blades
- Easy to use
- Handles may be too small for users with larger hands
These trimmers are backed by a lifetime money-back guarantee, which will give cat owners incentive to buy and give these best-selling trimmers a shot. The steel handles are durable and covered in thick rubber, for improved grip and ease of use. However, the handles are somewhat small, which can make this pair a bad choice for people with larger hands. In terms of cutting performance, this pair earned top marks, thanks to their tough angled stainless-steel blades that are designed to hold an edge longer.
Allstar Innovations PetiCare Nail Clippers
These trimmers come with a four bright LED lights that work to illuminate the nails so you can clearly see the quick and avoid hitting it. The magnification glass will magnify the nail five times it’s size and doubles as a nail trapper, which will capture any nail clippings, for fast and simple cleanup. The blades are made out of hardened steel and will slice through even the thickest feline’s nails neatly and cleanly.
- Nail trapper
- Magnification glass
- LED lights
- Low price
- Lights are not very bright
- Thin rubber cover on handles
This model is a good choice for the beginner, thanks to the built-in magnifying glass and the LED lights that allow you to clearly see the quick. The large handles make the trimmers easy to grip, even for users with larger hands, yet they are not the most comfortable handles to use, due to the very thin rubberized cover. Overall, what the trimmers lack in comfort, they make up for in some great safety features that will help put beginners at ease during a stressful nail trim.
Cat Nail Clippers Buyer’s Guide
Many people mistakenly believe that trimming a cat’s claws is down to essentially make them clawless. However, the point of trimming their nail is to simply remove the sharp tips on each claw. These tips are what poke into skin and rip through furniture. If left intact, a cat’s claws can do plenty of damage. While trimmed claws can help to minimize damage to your carpet, skin, and home, you’ll also need to purchase scratching posts, trays, and pads, in order to satisfy a cat’s natural urge to scratch.
Now, let’s learn more about the benefits of cutting your cat’s nails.
Benefits of Cat Nail Clippers
Unlike a dog, the cat’s nails retract into their paws, which can make it difficult for owners to keep an eye on how sharp and long they are, or whether they have a nail issue or broken nail. Trimming your cat’s nails is essential for nail health, but it will also come with other benefits, especially if your cat is prone to clawing furniture.
- Benefits of nail trims include:
If you have small children in the home, then a nail trim will ensure the cat is not able to claw their delicate skin and cause a mild to severe injury. Cats love to paw their family, a behavior which is usually done with their nails out. This can harm skin leaving behind scratches. Trimming off the sharp points can reduce their ability to scratch your skin.
- Cats love to claw carpet, couches, curtains, beds, and whatever else they can get their claws on. This can lead to costly damage.
- You may not notice that your cat has a nail problem, since they can retract their claws, but cats can be prone to torn and ingrown nails. By keeping the nails neatly groomed you can reduce the chances of your cat tearing out a nail or developing an ingrown nail.
Now that you know more about the benefits of keeping your cat’s nails trimmed, I’ll go over how nail trims can help to keep your cat happy and healthy.
Why You Should Trim Your Cat’s Nails
In the past, when a pet owner became fed up with the destruction in the home caused by a cat clawing, they took their cat to the vet and had them declawed. These days, many vets will refuse to declaw a cat since it’s not only very painful, but it’s also traumatic and can lead to health issues and behavior problems later on in life.
If you’re a cat lover, then you’ve already accepted the fact that your cat is going to scratch, and that it’s up to you to maintain their nails and provide them with toys and cat scratching posts that can help them satisfy their urge to scratch.
Trimming a cat’s nails is a matter of comfort for both your cat and you, especially if you have a cat that loves to knead your lap. Trimming their nails will enhance this experience so that you’ll no longer dread it and have to remove your cat from your lap.
Cat scratches can lead to infections since cats have a tendency to wander into unclean environments. If a cat is infested with fleas, then its scratch can also cause cat scratch fever, also known as Bartonella Henselae.
Usually, when a cat sharpens their claws, they’re trying to remove the outer, old layer of the nail. Sometimes, they can have a difficult time doing so, especially if they’re strictly indoor cats. This is problematic with indoor cats since many lack the type of coarse surface in the home that they need to get the job done. When a cat is unable to remove the outer layer it can lead to ingrown nails, which can be very debilitating and painful for your cat, often leading to a nasty infection that can be difficult to get rid of.
By trimming your cat’s nails often, you can prevent ingrown nails and promote healthy nails.
If you have a kitten on your hands, then it’s important that you introduce them to nail trimming at six months of age. This will help your cat to easily get used to this treatment, so it’s not difficult later in life. Introducing nail trimming later in life can be difficult, but it is possible, you’ll just need to go slow and allow your cat to become used to this treatment gradually.
Types of Cat Nail Clippers
Many cat owners are surprised to learn that there are more than one type of nail clippers designed for cats. There are currently three main types, each of which has its own pros and cons.
Scissor style nail trimmers are basically small scissors. Instead of the same of length as your basic household scissors, these measure in at around four inches in length. They also feature a small rounded tip. This style is preferred by some owners since it makes it easier to see the claw and where you’ll be cutting.
Pliers work much the same as scissors, the biggest difference is the grip. The handles on these clippers resemble the same type of grip that you’d find on a standard pair of pliers. Another difference between the plier style and scissors is the blade. Pliers have stronger, thicker blades, which makes them a good choice for larger cats that have thicker claws.
These blades form a loop. To use, you’ll insert the nail into the loop, then squeeze the handles together to cause the blade to come down and slice through the nail. This style is the least popular since they can easily crush or crack a pet’s nail if the blades are not kept sharp. If you have a cat that’s very tense and anxious then using this type of clipper can be more difficult since you must insert each nail in the loop before it’s clipped.
Other important Features
Now, I’ll go over the other must-have features to look for before you purchase a pair of nail clippers.
The grip should be comfortable and easy to hold. Some grips will consist of a hard plastic, or they may be very small, which can make it difficult for people with larger hands to handle them correctly. Look for clippers that feature a padded, comfortable, ergonomic grip.
Clippers that earn a high rating for durability are a must. Cheaper clippers can break on you during the middle of use, especially if they’re equipped with a low-quality blade.
Since you’re working with cats and not dogs, the length of the blades won’t matter much, as long as they’re not under three inches in length. Any shorter and the clippers will be difficult to use.
Getting the Most Out of Nail Clippers
Even if you purchase the best clippers, they will only work well if the blades are kept maintained, clean, and sharp. Dull blades can do a lot of nail damage, tearing a nail or crushing it. By crushing, cracking, or tearing a nail, the cat may be susceptible to an infection, not to mention pain and discomfort. Some clippers may have replacement blades that you can purchase once the blades become dull and are difficult to sharpen, while you’ll need to simply replace others. Clippers should be sharpened after every couple of uses, unless you groom multiple cats per trimming, in which case, the clippers should be sharpened each time, prior to use.
How to Use Cat Nail Clippers
After you’ve chosen the perfect clippers for your cat, you can get them started on a path to nail health. Once you get the hang of using nail clippers, it’s pretty simple, however, you need to have a plan in place in order to prevent your anxious or cranky cat from scratching you during the process.
- The first and most important step in the nail trimming process is putting your cat in a good mood. If your cat is cranky, spazzy, or anxious, then you’ll want to avoid trimming their nails for the time being. The goal is to trim their goals when they’re calm and relaxed. In fact, if your cat is a deep sleeper, you may want to give trimming their nails a shot when they’re napping. In most cases, you may only be able to clip a nail or two before they wake up, but if you have a pet that struggles with nail trims, then this may be the best time for a trim.
- If you feel confident that your cat can handle a nail trim while they’re awake, then prior to beginning the treatment, I recommend wrapping up your cat in a towel. This will prevent them from bolting and biting and scratching you. When wrapping your cat, try not to force them into the towel or rush the process. Your cat may struggle since they’re probably not used to being wrapped in a towel, other than bath time.
- To wrap your cat in a towel, place them on top of the towel, with the towel placed on a flat surface, such as the kitchen table or sofa. Next, place some cat treats on the towel, which will cause your cat to sit in a relaxed stance as they eat. Wrap the towel around them loosely as the eat and as you pet him or her gently. Allow him or her to walk away once they finished their treats. The goal is to create a positive association with the towel. During this time, it will also be important for you to remain calm and relaxed since cats are very good at reading emotions.
- Once your cat becomes accustomed to the towel, you can give nail trimming a shot. If your cat struggles when they feel the clippers on their nails, you will need to stop and wait for them to calm down.
- The next step is exposing the nail. Hold your cat’s paw and squeeze it gently to expose the claw. Speak to your cat in a gentle voice to help them remain calm. With the claw exposed, look for the quick. This is the root of the nail and it will appear very dark red or pink. The goal is to avoid cutting into the quick, which can be very painful for your cat and will cause the nail to immediately start bleeding. If you accidentally cut into the quick, remain calm and have cornstarch on hand. Apply the cornstarch to the nail immediately, which will stop the bleeding.
- If you’ve located the quick, make sure the clippers are placed up above it. The goal isn’t to clip off the entire nail, just the tips. As long as you avoid the quick and trim the tips, your pet will be just fine.
- You may only be able to cut one or two nails the first few sessions. Even if you are only able to trim one nail, make sure you reward your cat with a treat immediately after. Over time, your cat will get used to this grooming process and may even look forward to it, once they realize that you are not going to hurt them and that they will get treats after the process is finished.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do Indoor Cats Need their Nails Trimmed?
Yes. Outdoor cats have access to a variety of different abrasive surfaces outdoors, while most indoor cats do not. If you have an indoor cat, it’s important that you clip their nails once or twice a month to prevent them from getting too long and to prevent ingrown nails.
What Can Happen If I Don’t Trim My Cat’s Nails?
If you don’t trim your cat’s nails regularly, they can end up curling into the toes, which will make it very painful for your cat to walk and can lead to an infection. Additionally, untrimmed nails can lead to human injury, if your cat is too rough. They can also do plenty of damage to your furniture and curtains.
Is it Cruel to Cut a Cat’s Nails?
No. Cutting your cat’s nails will promote nail health and can prevent ingrown nails, torn nails, and damage to your home. Routine nail care is essential if you have cats that are strictly indoor only pets. If your cat plays outside often, then they will probably naturally sharpen their nails on rough surfaces such as the ground and trees.
How often Should I Clip Cat’s Nails?
It’s important to stay on top of your cat’s nail care and keep your cat’s nails short. A cat should have their nails clipped every ten to fourteen days in order to reduce the chances of them breaking or tearing a nail and to prevent ingrown nails from occurring. Some vets will recommend only clipping nails once a month, but if you have a larger breed, one with sharper, thicker nails, then I recommend trimming their nails twice a month.
The best cat nail clippers will feature a durable blade design, blades that are easy to sharpen and maintain, and handles that allow you to easily grip and control the clippers. The type of clippers you choose can be a matter of personal preference. Always go with the type that you feel comfortable holding and controlling. If you’re new to clipping nails, then scissors and pliers may be a better option than guillotine style clippers since it can be difficult to view the quick with guillotine clippers and you won’t have as much control as you would if you used one of the alternatives. This guide and the product recommendations are designed to help you pick out clippers that will be easy and safe to use, and a model that comes equipped with the type of sharp blades and durable design you need in clippers that can provide smooth and clean cutting action.