How to Remove Soft Claws

By Jill Ennis

Soft Claws, a humane alternative to declawing, are vinyl caps that are glued over the front and sometimes back claws of cats and kittens to prevent them from scratching people, other animals and furniture. Although they are designed to fall off with the natural growth of the cat's claws in approximately 4 to 6 weeks, Soft Claws may need to be manually removed in the event that the cat shows signs of discomfort, or his nails grow too long before the cap sheds on its own. Luckily, this can be done with no more difficulty than ordinary claw trimming.

Restrain the cat as calmly as possible. If the cat is particularly fidgety, attempt to settle him by wrapping him firmly but gently in a blanket or towel with only the paw to be worked allowed free. A second person may be helpful to hold the cat in place while the other removes the Soft Claws.

Grasp the cat's paw between your thumb and index finger, applying gentle pressure to the top of the paw to spread the cat's claws to make them more easily accessible.

Using claw clippers, clip the ends of the Soft Claw caps to break their seals, leaving vinyl "tubes" around the cat's claws. As with clipping a cat's natural claws, trim carefully and only a little at a time to avoid puncturing the pink tissue, or "quick," which will result in bleeding.

Gently squeeze and flex the remaining "tube" of the Soft Claw until it loosens enough to peel off. Although the adhesive bond will usually come off within a matter of minutes, it can sometimes take a day or two for it to wear down.