It still amazes me how many cat owners, soon-to-be owners, fosters, and even rescuers are unaware of the miracle of cat nail caps. Then I remember that I too was once unaware of these scratch-preventing innovations. They now rank on my top 5 list of world’s best inventions along with electricity and hot running water! I do love telling a yet-to-be enlightened person about nail caps  and watching their face light up recognizing the sheer brilliance of something so simple and yet so perfectly designed. Can you tell I’m a huge fan? If you fall into that category, let me tell you about cat nail caps!

Also called claw covers, claw caps, or nail covers, they are all made from durable yet bendable rubber-like plastic. They are shaped just like a cat’s or dog’s nails, but are hollow inside with an open end so they can slip on over your pet’s claws. Nowadays they come in many different sizes, ranging from kitten to extra large dog, though you may have to order them online (like at to find the options you desire. The standard clear ones are available in most retail pet supply stores, . If the clear ones aren’t fancy enough for you, they do come in various colors including glittery sparkles if you want to really have fun! I love it when shelters use pink and blue claw caps to dress up black pets and invite an educational discussion as to their function in a home.

I also love to explain to pet owners how easy nail caps make it to keep their furniture and themselves safe while scratch training their new cat or kitten. Also, aside from protecting your furniture, curtains and other belongings, nail caps can protect human babies, children, and other pet’s noses and eyes. If you are bringing a new cat into your home and have any of the above, I highly recommend applying nail caps on day one!

You do still need to know how to give your cat a “pawdicure” before applying by trimming your cat’s nails. You also need to keep an eye on them as the nail grows out and the cap eventually falls off in about 6 to 8 weeks so you can trim again. They are supposed to be made from a nontoxic material in case you don’t use the right amount of superglue (included in the packaging) when you apply them, and I personally like to apply right before feeding them so they are distracted while the glue dries enough to make them almost impossible to remove.

I’ve had years of practice applying them to all sorts of cats, and in the beginning I needed a helper to hold the cat. Still today if its a cat who I can’t wrangle for nail trimming by myself, I know I’ll need a helper to get the nail caps on too. Once I managed not to close the glue properly and had it dry out, but since I’ve always had plenty of glue left over after applying a whole pack, I just used another tube and there was plenty for both packs.

Now that you know about the miracle of nail caps, tell your friends! You don’t need to declaw a cat to make their paws always be soft and avoid sharp claws.

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