Characteristics Health

Maine Coon Cat Claws

Cat Claws

Everyone knows that caring for a Maine Coon Cat takes time and commitment. There is much to know about owning a Maine Coon Cat. For instance, owning a Maine Coon cat means that having a couple of scratching posts around the house should be mandatory. A Maine Coon has a natural instinct to scratch. With the Maine Coon it is more than a natural instinct, it is an urge for the Maine Coon to scratch.

For a Maine Coon, scratching does a number of things. First, it shapes their claws. Secondly, it provides a form of exercise and then also helps them to relieve stress. With these needs, it is imperative that you provide scratching posts. If you do not do this, you will find that furniture is being used as a scratching station.

When you get upset with the Maine Coon for using the furniture as a scratching post, this will create even more stress for the Maine Coon cat. The scratching posts you need are the sturdy types with a strong base, there are also some that will attach to the wall, which tends to be very good scratching posts.

The Maine Coone is definitely unique. Before you decide this is the cat you want, let’s go over some of the important factors that you need to know in regards to the Maine Coon Cat Claws.

One of the most important features would be the claws. Each of the four paws will have 5 toes on each of the front paws and four on each of the back paws. That is 18 Maine Coon cat claws to worry about and take care of.

Cat claw material

Cat Claws

The Maine Coon cat claws are made out of keratin and are extremely sharp. There is a purpose for the Maine coon to have all those sharp claws. Even though this is a domesticated breed of cat.

The claws are used for hunting and self-defence. Now granted, if your Maine Coon is an indoor cat, you may be thinking that the claws are not needed. Stop! Before you consider having your Maine Coon declawed finish reading this entire article.

The claws on each of the Maine Coon cat paws are used for other activities also. The Maine Coon will use those claws to climb trees, dig holes and also to groom.

Again, you are likely thinking that a Maine Coon that lives indoors is domesticated and will not be needing to climb trees. Again, continue reading.

Nails

Cat Claws

It is seriously important to understand that the nails will continue to grow. This is one reason why clipping the nails is important. The fact is if you do not clip those nails regularly, they will quickly get out of hand and grow wild.

The difference is that when a cat, any species or breed of cat, that lives in the wild uses those nails for climbing, digging, for grooming. All of these activities help to keep the nails short and they do not grow out of hand.

When you decide to be the owner of a cat, Maine Coon or other cats, you are then responsible for all of your cat’s health. This definitely includes the nails.

Cat Post

Cat Claws

There is another way that will help to keep your cat’s nails somewhat shorter. Invest in a really nice scratching post for your Cat. The good posts will have an area that is covered in jute. This will help them in trimming their own nails.

The scratching post also gives them a form of exercise. It is beneficial for more than the nails. The scratching post works out the muscles, trims up and yet sharpens the nails and gives the Maine Coon or other cat activities to occupy the time.

The scratching post also allows the Maine Coon to mark their territory.

Another beneficial purpose of purchasing a good quality scratching post is that your Maine Coon will not be scratching your furniture or your carpet. Some cats have been known to scratch the wood trim around doorways also. The investment in good quality and sturdy scratching posts is multifold. That scratching post is going to save you from a lot of damage to furniture, and the wood in the home.

Even with the scratching post, you are going to need a set of nail trimmers. There are multiple brands and styles on the market if you want to find one specifically for claws. However, I discovered in a pinch that it is possible to use the same type of clippers we use as humans. Just something to think about.

If you have kept your Maine Coon as an indoor cat, you are going to have to clip his or her nails. This is really not a difficult task. Many owners do feel intimidated by this. It really is not something to be scared of.

I do suggest that you have at least one other person for assistance. The second person is helpful if your cat likes to wiggle or wants to try to get away. Having that second person to hold the cat and soothe him or she will be helpful. You will be able to get the remainder of the nails clipped quicker with assistance also.

The first step is to gently hold on to the cat’s paw and gently squeeze so that the nails extend.  All that is needed is to clip the very tip off of each nail. The first couple of times this may take longer until you become comfortable doing the job. Once you do, you will be able to clip the nails all pretty quickly.

There are also tools called nail grinders on the market, most cats do not like the humming sound the grinder makes. However, it is almost the same process. You will gently hold the paw and gently squeeze until the nails extend. Then using the grinder, carefully put the grinder against the tip and grind off the tip of the nail.

When you are trimming the nails using a clipper, or using the grinder, be sure to only get the tip of the nail. If you get any further back, you could hit the quick of the nail. This can and often does cause some bleeding and pain.

The obvious point is that you want your cat to not be afraid of the process, so the gentler you can be the better it is for your Maine Coon and you. If your cat likes treats, be sure to give one after the trimming is done. If the cat doesn’t like treats, give oodles of positive reinforcements and cuddles.

Doing so helps the cat to associate good outcomes with nail trimming or grinding. Your Maine Coon can be taught or trained to not scratch the furniture or wood trim or other items in your home. However, it may be just simpler to invest in the scratching post. While doing that,  remember all cats love cat trees.

These are like special areas for a cat that they can climb on, there are cubby holes for the cat to crawl into and they, as most cats love, can sit way up high and watch over all that is happening in the room. This too would be a wonderful investment. If it can be placed in front of a window so that the cat can watch the world happening outside, this is going to please your cat immensely.

Declawing

Cat Claws

According to veterinarians and the Humane Society, actually taking the cat to the vet and having the cat declawed could be one of the worst choices to make. This is why it is so highly suggested that people fully understand all the work involved when it comes to a Maine Coon or any other pet.

The reason declawing is so bad is that it is not a manicure as many will lead you to believe. In actuality, what happens is that the end or last bone in the cat’s fingers and toes is actually amputated. This is so much more than just removing the nails. It is removing the piece of bone where the nail comes out.

Pause for a second, just a short second and look at your hand, at your fingers. This will help you to understand the extent of the so-called manicure. Now the tip of your finger that holds the nail bed, imagine the tips coming off each of your fingers and toes, all at the same time. Then imagine having to get up and walk to where you use the toilet and trying not to feel pain.

Then imagine that once the declawing is completed, your Maine Coon cat completely heals and is back to himself as much as possible, until the day he happens to sneak out of the house. Now if you and the family have left home for the day, your Maine Coon is outside all day. There are predators outdoors. Is your Gentle Giant going to be able to protect himself from the predator?

Those nails that were removed with the first section of bone, that is what the Maine Coon and other cats used to protect themselves if, for some reason, they were stuck outdoors. However, I will say that once the healing process has been completed, according to the veterinarian, the Maine Coon will likely not even realize the nails are gone.

Even after being declawed, you will find that many cats are still ‘scratching’. However, there is no damage done to furniture or the home. One other option is to buy nail covers. They come in multiple colours and are easily attached. I would suggest having a second person to assist with this also.