Do Cat Claws Shed: Causes of Claw Shedding at Its Proper Care

Shedding of nails is normal and generally occurs when the cat is groomed. Occasionally, a back claw may fall off or become twisted and need to be removed. If your cat constantly scratches furniture or the walls, it may be a sign that they are not sufficiently groomed, and their claws are too long. You can try trimming their nails to shorter lengths if this is the case.

Cat Claws


A common misconception is that all cats shed their claws. This is only sometimes the case. Cats generally lose their fingernails when they reach maturity. Sometimes cats may inherit claws from their mothers or other family members, but most claw loss occurs spontaneously. Most cats do not shed their feet regularly, but a small number of them may lose one or more claws from time to time as they grow older. 

Most often, this will happen when a cat is growing out of her kittenhood, and her nails are starting to thicken and lengthen. Occasionally claw loss can also result from trauma (such as being stepped on), infection, poor nutrition, or genetic abnormalities. A few rare cases of cats retaining their claws into adulthood have been reported, but these are very unusual.


Most cat owners know that kitties claw, but few realize they can break a cat’s claws. When this happens, your cat may experience discomfort and difficulty walking. It’sIt’s essential to know that cats can break their claws, but this is rare. 

The best way to prevent it is by keeping cats indoors, where they don’t need to hunt prey. If your cat’s nails are brittle or yellowing, it may be time for a vet checkup. In the meantime, paw-some paw-sitting and keep those claws sharp.

Not Shedding

There is no one answer to this question, as it can depend on several factors, including your cat’s age, grooming, climbing activities, diet, and health. Some cats may not shed their claws because they are naturally sans feet, while others might have difficulty removing them due to disease or injury. If you notice that your cat is not shedding its claws regularly, talk to your veterinarian about the possibility of surgically removing them. 

Shedding of Sheath

Claw shedding happens to cats to keep their cat claws sharp. The sheath of a cat’s nail comprises keratin, the protein that makes up human hair and nails. The sheath gradually falls off as new keratin is formed, revealing the sharp claw tips underneath. Cats also shed their claws to clean them. 

The sheath of a cat’s claw is covered in scales, and dirt and dust can get trapped between the scales and the sheath. When a cat sheds its claws, it rubs them against something complex (like rocks) to scratch out all the dirt and dust. 

Causes Why Claw Sheaths Fall Off


Scratching is a natural behavior for cats. When they scratch, it helps them to remove dried skin and other materials from their bodies. However, if your cat scratches too hard or excessively, this can cause the claws on their front feet to break off due to exposure to sharp edges.

If your cat is scratching excessively on posts or furniture, consider purchasing a scratching post designed for cats. This will give them a good place to scratch without damaging their claws. Additionally, using a scratching post can help reduce the damage your cat inflicts on furniture and other surfaces in the home.

Overheating and Excessive Drinking

When cats overheat or drink excessively, their body temperatures and blood alcohol levels can rise too high. This can cause the claws on their front feet to fall off due to thermal shock. 

In addition, too much fluid in the bloodstream can push up against the claws and sheath inside the nail beds. As a result, these structures can slowly pull away from the nails over time.

Playing Rough With Cats

When cats play roughly, they may be swinging their bodies around and using their claws to knock each other down. This can stress the sheaths inside the nails, slowly pulling away from them over time.

When cats get injured, they may receive cuts and tears on their skin. This can cause bacteria and other contaminants to enter the wound and cause inflammation. This, in turn, can lead to the sheaths inside the cat’s nails breaking down.

Oral Disease

The primary cause of cat claw sheaths falling off is an oral disease. When the lining of the mouth becomes inflamed, it can result in the hardening and thickening of the gum tissues that line the inside of your cat’s mouth. 

This extra tissue can make it difficult for your cat to open their jaws wide enough to grab hold of things with its claws, which is why they start losing them.

Proper Care for Cat’s Claws

Cats use their claws for many purposes, including scratching, playing, and defending themselves. Proper care of cat claws will help keep them healthy and sharp. Here are some tips:

  • Never clip them before a veterinarian has cleared the procedure, as this can result in severe bleeding and infection.
  • Wash their paws regularly with warm water and soap; use a nailbrush if necessary.
  • Apply a protective layer of petroleum jelly or cream to their nails daily to keep them from getting wet and sticking together while they groom themselves.
  • Avoid walking on their paws when wet; this will cause them to slip and lose their nails.
  • If your cat retracts or chews on its claws, consult your veterinarian for possible reasons and treatment.