This will be the second article that I have submitted to the website.  Please keep in mind that I think of things that make total sense while still inside my head, but when put into practice usually go wrong, and are never as easy as it seemed while in my head.  I have three cats whose names are C-A-T (spelled out), Chip, and D-O-G (also spelled out). 

They have been driving me nuts with scratching the furniture up. My bed, which I have only had six months, has been clawed on part of the box spring and the back of my sofa and chair looked totally shredded. I have tried different sprays to put on the furniture to repel them to no avail; I think they actually like the repellent because they claw the furniture even more. I have about 4 different kinds of scratching posts for them etc. Nothing works, so this week I was truly tempted to have them declawed because even spraying them in the face with water doesn't discourage their inevitable need to claw everything, (including my lap when they jump up and knead).

Well, I think it is cruel to declaw especially since I like my own nails a little long. I found this product called "Soft Claws" which are little plastic caps that go over the nails and come off as the nail grows, they last 6 to 8 weeks.

Now, I used to be a nail technician and have trimmed and put nails on all kinds of people including children who don't sit still. So, being the cocky person I can sometimes be, I thought ‘hmmm this will be a snap.’ WRONG!!! A fine example of what made sense in my head, not quite making sense when put into practice.

Cats are by no means the same as people. First I clipped their nails back a little being very careful not to get close to their quick. My cat, C-A-T was very good and just laid in my lap while I did his. The other two, oh my gosh, they wanted nothing to do with the clippers. I bribed them with treats, lulled them into a sense of false security by letting them fall asleep in my lap and then trying to clip, I begged, I pleaded, finally I enlisted the help of my son, after all Chip and D-O-G are his. We had a lot of wiggling and running around the house.

Finally, that task was accomplished, now it was time to glue the caps to their claws. You would think this would be easy for an ex-nail person...Ha, ha, ha no way! Kitty nails are not stationary like on people they move from side to side and retract, unlike peoples. I managed to get all of them on D-O-G even though he was very put out about the entire episode and boy oh boy his tail must have been going about 100 miles per hour.

Chip ended up accidentally being glued to one of my fingers. When I put one of the caps on, his fur got a little in the way so while I was moving it the finger holding the cap on his nail slipped a little and I was glued to his paw. I am pretty sure at this point Chip cussed me out pretty well. I would have washed his mouth out with soap but figured I had put him through enough.

Lastly, I did C-A-T, my little darling who puts up with anything from me and loves me so much. I managed to get one paw completely done before I enlisted the aide of my son again. By this time C-A-T was furious and growling way back in his throat, he also cussed me out and since he is older than Chip I think the words were worse. Now even though my darling was growling at me I was not worried about being scratched because no matter how mad he may get at me he would never hurt me.

Finally, I was done with all three and guess what it only took about 3 1/2 hours from start to finish. What a deal! They shook their paws and tips toed around the first evening, but have now adjusted. They still claw the furniture but can't do any damage now and when they get in my lap and knead, there is no pain or bloodshed or gashes. I think technically this is more humane for them but takes a lot of patience for us humans and probably shouldn’t be attempted by just one person.

The soft claws last between six and eight weeks. They are supposed to fall off as the cat’s claws grow, and then you just clip them back and put a new set on. I really like when the cats get in my lap now and start kneading that they don't draw blood with these on. I do have a funny side note that happened to D-O-G with these on.  He is the worst at clawing the furniture and last night he went to claw the sofa. He usually reaches up and arches his back while stretching his body as long as he can then he starts clawing.

Well, he tried to do that and reached up, then arched his body and his claws just slid right off the sofa and he fell right on his little face. He got back up and kind of shook his head (you just know he was thinking "What the Hell just happened?)". So what did he do? Reached right back up and tried to claw the sofa again. He experienced the exact same results and landed on his face again. This time when he got back up he shook his head and the hissed at the sofa (what an evil sofa we have, lol). I think he thought the sofa was knocking him down or something. It was the funniest thing to watch, I was laughing so hard my ribs hurt. 

All in all, I think this is very safe and much easier on the cats than declawing them. I know I would rather have nails glued on than have my nails along with their roots torn out. So if I don’t want to be denailed than I refuse to declaw my cats no matter how much they claw. I suggest that before declawing people should try the “Soft Claws” which can be ordered over the Internet as well as carried in pet stores. They come in a variety of colours, (just like our nail polish), and sizes. Just remember it takes a lot of patience on your part but doesn’t harm the cat.

Here is a link to a photo gallery of cats wearing the different colour soft claws:

Sabrina Ralston (NC - USA)

To read Sabrina's other CAT CHAT story, 'HAPPY ENDINGS' click here:




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