by Amanda L. Maus DVM
In order to trim a cat’s nail, you must first push on the base of the nail to make it easier to see where you will be cutting.
Then look for the blood supply aka quick of the nail.
Make sure to cut the nail above the quick so you do not cause the cat any pain.
If you accidentally cut too close to the blood supply of the nail, inspect the nail immediately and again in a few minutes in case there is delayed bleeding. Mild bleeding may stop by applying direct pressure to the tip of the nail for 15 to 30 seconds. Moderate bleeding may require the use of styptic powder obtained from a petstore or grooming supply company. Severe bleeding should be addressed by a veterinarian.
Repeat this process with each of the 5 nails on the front feet and each of the 4 nails on the rear feet.
You do not need to trim all 18 nails at the same session. Some cats do better with only a few nails done at each sitting.
Some cats are not agreeable to having their nails trimmed at home. Your veterinarian’s office offers nail trimming services and is able to complete the task quickly for most cats.