Cat Claw Covers: The Good And The Bad


Humans are naturally drawn to us cats because we make amazing household companions—we’re funny, we’re clean and we’re extremely adorable. But, like everything in this world, we’re not perfect and we have things about us that may cause our humans to take a step back, like our tendency to use our claws on inappropriate things.

Well, we’re cats and we’re born with claws. They’re part of who we are and we need them to survive—our claws are our primary defense system. This might be hard to believe, but, even though we sometimes ruin a few (okay, maybe a lot) of our humans’ furniture, our intention is never to make a mess or make you guys angry. It’s just that we have needs and if not provided, we find our own ways to deal with the lack of resources. Hence, the ruined furniture (and some scratched humans).

BEFORE YOU CONSIDER GETTING CAT CLAW COVERS:

  • Make sure your home has plenty of other things to claw

If you have a cat that always goes on a scratching spree inside your home, the first thing you need to do is cat-proof the household. Cat-proofing means making your home cat-appropriate by creating spaces for your cat where they can do what cats do and NOT get in trouble. Fill these spaces with kitty furniture: cat beds, cat trees and most importantly, scratching posts. Cats will scratch. Like I said, it’s part of who we are, so it’s very important that you give your cat their own places to scratch so they don’t do a number on your leather couch.

If your cat isn’t used to these, then try spraying them with cat-nip! Even if your cat doesn’t tend to have a strong reaction to cat-nip, it can still help designate areas where its okay to scratch.

 

For even more scratching post options, check out this article!

  • Make sure your cat gets enough daily playtime (20-30 minutes)

If you’ve already cat-proof your home, but your cat is still committing crimes with their claws, then maybe you need to play with them more. It’s good to buy your cat toys, but daily playtime is a need that all cat owners should be able to provide. Dog owners are responsible for walking their dogs on a daily basis and similarly, cat owners are responsible for playing with their cats on a daily basis. Playtime will help get rid of your cat’s excess energy and make them less likely to scratch or bite. It even helps reduce aggression in cats. Plus, playtime makes for a great feline-human bonding moment.

  • Make sure you’re considering cat claw covers for the RIGHT reasons

Many cat owners have jumped onto the cat claw cover bandwagon just so they can match the color of their cat’s claws with theirs. Keep in mind that cat claw covers are made to offer an alternative solution to declawing (something no one should ever do to their cat), not for aesthetic purposes. If your cat is perfectly tame and does not cause any problem inside your home in terms of scratching, then it’s best to leave their claws be. Cat claw covers are generally safe, and a much less harmful way to prevent excessive scratching, but the application still involves risks that cats without scratching issues shouldn’t be subjected to.

WHAT ARE CAT CLAW COVERS?

Cat claw covers are stick-on caps that go over your cat’s natural claws, reducing the damage they can do by covering the sharp edges. They’re quite durable and can last for 4-6 weeks before they gradually fall off as your cat’s claws grow naturally.

The claw covers are specifically designed to fit on your cat’s claws and they’re available in various sizes. Because of how they are shaped, they usually don’t bother or cause any pain to cats, as long as it’s the right size and applied correctly.

THE GOOD

  • The covers will prevent them from ruining your furniture and scratching other people, especially kids
  • It’s a great alternative to declawing
  • It doesn’t harm your cat or cause them pain (like declawing)
  • It’s doesn’t affect their health
  • Since the caps need to be reapplied every 4-6 weeks, your cat’s nails will be regularly trimmed

Here are a few popular cat claw covers:

  • Soft Claws Feline Nail Caps

  • VICTHY 140pcs Cat Nail Caps

  • Kitty Caps Nail Caps for Cats

THE BAD

  • Should not be used on outdoor cats

Like I said earlier, we cats use our claws to defend ourselves. If your cat is an indoor-outdoor cat or you often take them outdoors, then claw covers are not for them.

  • May cause pain if applied incorrectly

You should choose the right claw cap size and apply the glue correctly. Your cat should be able to fully retract and extract their claws. I suggest watching a tutorial ( or multiple tutorials, preferably) before applying the caps and read all instructions.

  • Your cat may chew on it and try to remove it at first

During the first few weeks, your cat may try to chew on the caps and take them off. So, it’s best to keep a watchful eye on them to make sure they don’t swallow the caps if they ever succeed in taking them off.

CAT CLAW COVERS ARE SUITED FOR:

  • Cats with owners who are immunocompromised and can suffer from infections if scratched
  • Cats living with families who have small children or lots of visiting family and friends and tend to get nervous
  • Cats or kittens who tend to play a little too rough or are too aggressive
  • Cats who suffer from skin issues, chronic itching or other skin-related disorders
  • Hairless cats or cats with sensitive skin
  • Cats with nails that shed incorrectly and often snag on carpets, beddings, clothing or other fabric

CAT CLAW COVERS ARE NOT SUITABLE FOR:

  • Cats that go outdoors
  • Cats with owners who don’t have time to maintain the 4-6 week nail trimming and cap replacement
  • Cats who continually chew or bite off their nail caps even after the training phase
  • People who are only trying to make their cats “look nice”

FINAL THOUGHTS

Cat claw covers should be a last resort and should only be considered if you have already tried every possible way to stop your cat’s excessive scratching. But, since we cats scratch out of necessity and not because we intentionally want to ruin furniture, I’m sure investing in cat trees and scratching posts as well as regularly trimming your cat’s nails will be enough to save your furniture from your feline’s claws. If not, then cat claw covers might be a good temporary solution until you figure out the reason for your cat’s destructive behavior, however, please check with your veterinarian before applying cat claw caps. 

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