Clipping your cat's nails can help save your furniture and rugs from destruction, but it's not always the easiest thing to do. To make nail trimming easier on you and your pet, follow these four tips:

Use human nail clippers.

Pet nail clippers are often necessary for dogs because their nails are so thick. However, your cat's nails are thin enough that you can clip them with human nail clippers, which tend to be smaller and thus easier to handle. To reduce splintering of the nail, make sure you cut with the nail clippers positioned vertically – the slit should be facing up and down.

Don't clip all of the nails at once.

Keeping a cat calm while all 18 nails are trimmed is tough and may result in an angry cat and some scratched up arms. Make the task easier on everyone by only clipping a few nails at a time. Clip two or three nails (or a whole paw's worth if your cat is well behaved), and then let your cat roam. Later on, when your cat has had a chance to calm down again, clip a few more nails.

Give your cat a treat after nail clipping.

This will go a long way towards making your cat more accepting of the nail clipping process. Your cat will come to associate nail clipping with treat time, and will sit more patiently. Make sure the treats you're giving your cat are safe. Store-bought cat treats from a reputable brand are a good choice, as is plain chicken. Don't give fatty meat scraps or milk, as these may cause diarrhea and upset stomach in some cats.

Ask your vet to demonstrate.

If you're having trouble clipping your cat's nails, ask your vet to show you how to do this most effectively the next time you visit for vaccines or a checkup. Your vet or vet tech is likely an expert at trimming cat's nails and will be able to show you some techniques for holding your cat and quickly trimming the nails that are hard to describe in words . Plus, if your vet trims your cat's nails while you're in the office, that's one less trimming session you have to handle yourself.

For many pet owners, keeping furniture intact is a struggle. Trimming your cat's nails is a good way to achieve this goal without resorting to surgical declawing. This process can be safe and effective, as long as you follow the tips above. Visit an animal hospital like Edinburgh Animal Hospital for more information.