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An Alternative to Declawing Your Cat Using Nail Caps

Updated on August 12, 2013

Disclaimer: I am not a health professional. Please seek the advice of your veterinarian before you change the diet, exercise program, or any other lifestyle adjustments of your pet.

Freshly Manicured Diva Kitty


Stop the Scratching Using Soft Paws or Soft Claws

For those of us who are cat lovers, but not impressed by the shredding talent they come by naturally, there is a painless solution for this issue. The solution provides comfort to both of you so that you can enjoy your home harmoniously, together. In my personal opinion, declawing is a painful, unnatural, and unnecessary procedure. We humans have socially accepted this torturous act in order to save our possessions.

Nail caps work wonders! I was told about this product in 2009 when I adopted my snow white kitty from my local animal shelter. I was concerned about my new furniture, and even though my husband made her a ‘kitty condo’ chock full of scratching opportunities, it wasn’t a guarantee my furniture would be safe.

Why do They Scratch and What can I do About it?

It is completely natural for a cat to have the need to scratch. Many times scratching posts are helpful, however, they are not always successful in keeping kitty claws off of your favorite recliner or expensive oriental rug. If you agree that declawing is inhumane, or your cat is too old to be declawed, this product is worth a try.

Several companies make these nail caps in all sizes and colors. They are rubber or plastic tips that actually cover each of the cat’s claws, giving the claws a dull, soft edge. It doesn’t interfere with their urges to scratch. It just stops the cat from causing damage to items or people.

THIS ITEM IS FOR INDOOR CATS ONLY! Because cats use their claws in threatening situations, your cat will be at a disadvantage if he/she finds the need to defend himself/herself.

I have found it unnecessary to use the nail caps on the hind claws. However, I do trim them on a monthly basis. The front claws (including the thumb) need to be capped. There are several companies who sell this product, so be sure to read the directions entirely and discuss the idea with your veterinarian before you attempt to use the nail caps. It is also best to start early in the cat’s life so that it becomes “normal” to him/her.

Halloween Cat Candy Corn Claws


Watch how easy it is...

Easy Application

Each claw needs to be trimmed before the cap is glued on. In order to clip the claws, push on the cat’s knuckle until the entire claw is exposed. Be very, very careful when trimming your kitty’s claws. Only clip the tip. Cats have a cuticle inside their claws and if it is clipped, it will be bleed and be extremely painful for Kitty. You can see the cuticle in good lighting if you look closely.

Once the claws are clipped, place the glue that comes with the product in the nail cap and place on the trimmed claw. Sometimes the cat will not approve of your attempt to cover his/her claws. The procedure may require two people, one to hold Kitty, and one to do the work. Personally, I have found that patience is a wonderful thing. I wait until my cats are asleep or cuddling in my lap. That is when I clip the claws, and let them go. Later, I place the glue in two nail caps and sneak up on Kitty, and apply both caps. You can glue from two to all ten caps at one time depending on the temperament of your cat.

The nail caps last approximately 4 weeks. As your cat's claws grow, the nail sheath will come off, bringing the nail cap with it. At that point, it is important to trim the nail and reapply a new nail cap, as needed. A cat will generally lose one or two caps at a time, so upkeep is much easier than the initial "manicure".

Do you believe declawing is a humane act?

See results

You will love the results, I assure you. The nail caps come in a variety of colors, and I have seen nail caps for dogs too! Visit the following hub to learn about how to toilet train your cat! It really works!

Please spay or neuter your pets! There are thousands of unwanted animals put down every week! And, by all means, please adopt from a shelter should you decide to add a new, lovable family member.

As always, I certainly hope this was helpful.

"Be kind to one another" ~ Ellen

God Bless You ~ Margaret Sullivan

This Kitty is an indoor cat who escaped into the wild outside world.  Once we found her, she obviously needed a bath.  Poor Kitty.
This Kitty is an indoor cat who escaped into the wild outside world. Once we found her, she obviously needed a bath. Poor Kitty. | Source


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    • Mmargie1966 profile image

      Mmargie1966 6 years ago from Gainesville, GA

      Thanks so much, Daniel! I'm glad you enjoyed (and learned) from this hub!

    • danieltiley26 profile image

      danieltiley26 6 years ago from Amesbury, Wiltshire, U.K

      A great hub that is both informative and useful. I have marked accordingly. I didn't know that you could get caps as an alternative to de-clawing. I will most certainly be using them from now on. Voted up.

    • Mmargie1966 profile image

      Mmargie1966 6 years ago from Gainesville, GA

      That's actually a degree. I must admit, the nail cap outlaw is a bit over the top for me. Its as if a woman is getting acrylic nails put on, in my opinion. The only difference is that a woman takes off the acrylic on occasion to let the nail breathe. Well, the cats lose their nail caps as the nail grows out and pushes it off. Unless you follow your cat around waiting for it to drop a nail, that nail has a chance to breathe before you cover it again.

      However, kudos to Sweden for protecting the rights of animals. That sure does explain my radical animal activist friend here in America. She is from Sweden.

      Thanks, Dax

    • Daxman profile image

      Daxman 6 years ago from The Netherlands

      @Margie - Because they are considered to be unnatural thus animal abuse. I can't tell you how strict they are here regarding animals. In the Swedish constitution there is actually a chapter prohibiting people from killing flies and musquitoes :) No joke..

    • Mmargie1966 profile image

      Mmargie1966 6 years ago from Gainesville, GA

      Just out of curiosity, Dax, why are nail caps prohibited in Sweden?

    • Mmargie1966 profile image

      Mmargie1966 6 years ago from Gainesville, GA

      There are other ways to train your cats to use a scratching post.

      Jackson Galaxy is a professional Cat Behaviorist. He has a show called "My Cat from Hell" ~ where he teaches people how to train their cat(s) in many problem areas. Check it out...I hope he helps you!

    • Daxman profile image

      Daxman 6 years ago from The Netherlands

      I'd never even consider declawing my kitties although the nail caps are also prohibited to use here in Sweden. For this reason i've had to get used to sacrificing my furniture and buying only sofas etc that are made from strong flexible fabrics, Never Leather :) I've been needing to replace my furniture roughly every 3 years. Still love my cats though, wouldn't give them up for the world!!!! :)

    • Mmargie1966 profile image

      Mmargie1966 6 years ago from Gainesville, GA

      Thank you, Devious...I recommend this hub for you:

    • DeviousOne profile image

      DeviousOne 6 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      It sounds very interesting. I was considering using it on our little friend but she's an indoor/outdoor cat so I'm thinking it may not work out as well for when she's outdoors. Great hub and solution though.

    • Mmargie1966 profile image

      Mmargie1966 6 years ago from Gainesville, GA

      Hello Shell! Congratulations on your new addition! I'm sure you will find the nail caps to be a Godsend!

    • Shell-Belle profile image

      Shell-Belle 6 years ago from Mesa

      Thank you for sharing! I am a first time cat owner, and was looking for what options I have. This sounds like a perfect fit for my kitty and I. Voted up.

    • Mmargie1966 profile image

      Mmargie1966 6 years ago from Gainesville, GA

      Thank you for your comment, kingmaxler. I have edited my hub to show that the caps usually last about 4 weeks before the cat will shed them along with their own natural claws.

    • Mmargie1966 profile image

      Mmargie1966 6 years ago from Gainesville, GA

      Thank you, Peggy. They do, in fact, shed the nail cap as the nail grows. My recommendation is to trim and cap 1 or 2 claws at a time, even if it takes a couple of days to complete the set. They usually grow out and fall of 1 or 2 claws at a time, so upkeep isn't that difficult. You can also solicit some help by allowing someone else to hold the cats in a towel, and cover 1 paw at a time.

    • Mmargie1966 profile image

      Mmargie1966 6 years ago from Gainesville, GA

      I appreciate your vote, Laura. However I especially appreciate your recognition of the pain that your fuzzy friend would endure if having their nails surgically removed!

    • Laura Matkin profile image

      Laura Matkin 6 years ago from Laceys Spring, Alabama

      Great Hub! Declawing is a painful and unnecessary procedure, it's like having your fingernails removed, I can not imagine how much that must hurt. Voted up!

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 6 years ago from Houston, Texas

      These sound good although both of our cats are now older, so don't know if they would adapt. Even trimming their claws is a challenge. I usually get one or two done at a time before they scoot away. their nails grow back, doesn't this eventually push the nail cap off? Both of our cats are inside only and spayed and neutered. Thanks for spreading the word about that importance! Voted up and interesting.

    • kingmaxler profile image

      kingmaxler 6 years ago from Olympia, Washington USA

      So you have to put them on several times every day? What happens when you leave the house?


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