Friday 19 November 2021

Should I trim my cat's: whiskers, fur, claws, bum hair and/or paw pads?

Long whiskers. Photo in public domain.
Long whiskers - don't trim them as the are superb and they serve an important purpose. Photo in public domain.

In the order they appear in the title, the answers are as follows:

  • NO! This is deliberately in capitals for emphasis 😊. Never dream about trimming whiskers to make them tidier. They are highly functional. They act as 'fingers' and feelers. The base of a whisker is connected to nerves resulting in the whisker being very sensitive to even air currents and the things that it comes into contact with.
  • RELATED: How does a cat use her whiskers?
  • You can trim fur in employing a lion cut. This can be useful for longhaired cats in home climates as the fur of Persians can be inordinately and unnaturally long. It should be done by a vet as the cat will probably need sedating or they even need a general aesthetic. These are dangerous. Discuss with your vet.
  • RELATED: Cat Anaesthetics Decision Making.
  • Claws need trimming sometimes. Full-time indoor cats don't normally have the means to wear down the claws on their forepaws. Outside cats wear them down precluding the need to trim them. Elderly cats need a regular inspection to check for ingrowing nails due to their relative inactivity.
  • RELATED: Should Cat Claws Be Trimmed?
  • Bum hair does not need trimming. No point, unless the cat is ill with diarrhoea and can't keep themselves clean.
  • RELATED: Cat Health Tip: Treatment of Routine Diarrhea or Vomiting.
  • The reference to 'paw pads' means the tufts of hair between the toes which you typically see on the paws of Maine Coons. No, you should not trim it. No need and it's a nice feature of the domestic cat. The hair serves a purpose anyway: to protect the paw pads in hot weather and to help keep the paws warmer in cold weather.
  • RELATED: Maine Coon toe tufts - to trim or not to trim??

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