You may recall that last year we helped Muffin, an elderly beauty, get the vet care needed to treat embedded nails in her paw pads. Muffin did well post-surgery, but unfortunately she developed another embedded nail in her paw pad recently.
Her mom, Jessica, noticed that Muffin looked like she was standing on something, so she reached out to Phinney’s because she couldn’t afford the treatment Muffin would need.
Phinney’s was able to pay for the vet visit where they cleaned the nail, cut it, and treated Muffin with medication. We’re so glad we were able to help Muffin again, and that we were again able to counsel Jessica on how to keep up a proper nail trim regime.
At age 16, Muffin's nails are growing differently, and on top of it all, she doesn’t like to be handled much anymore. And while we know how important it is to be sensitive to that fact, we also know that all cats, regardless of their age, need continual care.
Ignoring regular nail trims can turn into a serious, urgent, and potentially life-threatening matter if the paw pad becomes infected and anything like pee or poop from their litter box or other debris gets into the wound.
Fortunately, Muffin is recovering well from this most recent issue with her nails, and a mom's family member will help her keep track of the nails from now on. Muffin is not keen AT ALL about her bandage, but, hey, we hope it’s some consolation for Muffin to know that it is the prettiest shade of pink!
We wish her all the best on her continued road to recovery.
We cannot stress enough how important it is to keep your cat’s nails properly trimmed. An embedded nail can be very painful, and it can lead to serious infection if left untreated.
Don’t delay if you notice any of the following:
Immediately contact your veterinarian to examine your cat’s paws if you observe any of those things.
And if you’re not comfortable trimming your cat’s nails (Remember: NEVER trim at or below the quick of the nail), plan on booking a nail trim with your vet or an experienced and reputable groomer in your area.
Regular nail trims (about every two weeks) can help avoid a situation like the one Muffin has experienced. And you can learn more about the importance of nail care by visiting Phinney’s Care Corner.
Nail Care for Elderly Cats
In general, elderly cats may experience thicker, weaker, and drier nails, The Nest reports. Their nails can easily split, break, or become overgrown, and some older cats might have trouble retracting their nails, too, which is yet another reason to monitor a cat’s nails regularly!
Also, elderly cats might not be as interested in their scratching posts or scratch pads as when they were younger given nail weakness. So, to manage their nail care, consider filing in addition to regular nail trims.
And consider that overgrowth of a cat’s nails could be a sign of osteoarthritis, so if you observe this, schedule an appointment so your veterinarian can rule out a potential medical issue.