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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-20-2007, 12:23 PM Thread Starter
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Cleaning Claws

I just played with Sugar's foot & pushed her nails out & then she started cleaning them intensely & then I looked down & saw an outer layer of her claw on the blanket. Is that what they are chewing off? Normal
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-20-2007, 12:33 PM
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I see mine chew on their claws all the time (both front and back paws). Sounds likely that they are trying to get the sheath off their new, sharp claw, or maybe it gets itchy, I am not sure. But they can do it for hours on end
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-20-2007, 12:54 PM
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Bob has always chewed his nails, and he has taught several of the others to do it to.

Bob likes to do it in the middle of the night while we are trying to sleep (he's the only kitty that routinely sleeps with us).

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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-20-2007, 05:30 PM
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Ya, that's how the nails grow -- they shed the outer layer. I find nail sheathes (sp?) lying around the house all the time.

And something I've got a theory on: I think the nails grow in spurts. I can't think of any other reason why I can check a cat's nails and they're all fine and two days later I have to trim one or two really long and sharp nails (but all the rest are still fine.) I think that they don't all grow at the same rate, and when they do grow, it's a sudden big burst of growth, at which point the outer layer cracks and sheds off, leaving a longer and sharper nail. I suppose by chewing on the nails, at cat is either trying to keep them trimmed, or maybe it's trying to encourage the old sheath to shed off. All my own theories, not verified.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-20-2007, 11:14 PM Thread Starter
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I haven't really found any nail sheaths before so at least it's pretty normal.

Tim - Your theory makes sense. Their nails might get a bit itchy with the older outer layer so they bite & gnaw at it to clean & try to take it off. Sugar is such a good girl, giving herself a pedicure every night before bed
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-24-2007, 06:40 PM
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Yup they gnaw them off. That's one of the reasons they scratch scratching posts I know if i look around Neko's post I can find his sheaths on and around it.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 11-24-2007, 08:17 PM
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My oldest cat, Tiger, will chew his nails too and pull off the outer layer. When I was young I had a cat who liked it when I played with her feet. I would pull them off for her....she even liked that. She was weird. None of my cats now like me touching their feet.
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