Best Cat Nail Clippers for Your Cat

Cat with Claw Showing

If you’ve ever tried to trim your cat’s nails, you know the struggle that’s bound to ensue every time you get out the nail clippers. The hissing. The scratching. The fighting. The running and hiding. Whatever the reason may be, cats simply hate having their nails trimmed.

Of course, there’s no way around it. Sometimes, it just has to be done. 

If the thought of nail trimming time is starting to make you as nervous as it makes your cat, you may be wondering: are there any types of clippers on the market that could make the job quicker and easier? How often should you trim your cat’s nails anyway? And are there any tips to help with trimming an aggressive cat’s nails?

In this guide, we’ll answer all those questions and more. First up, let’s look at the best cat nail clippers on the market in 2020.

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7 Best Cat Nail Clippers

CleanHouse Pet Nail Clippers with Pet Safety Guard and Lock

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CleanHouse Pets is all about making your life a little easier when it comes to trimming cat claws. These plier-style clippers come in two different sizes, both of which will fit easily into any hand size. The smaller size is perfect for most cats.

The stainless steel blades come with a built-in safety guard which will help make the nail trimming a more painless, stress-free process. The blades will cut through the claw quickly and seamlessly, and they are built to last so you don’t have to worry about them breaking or dulling after a couple of uses.

With sturdy rubber grips, these clippers won’t slip out of your hand while you’re using them, and they include a built-in lock so you can keep the blades safely closed when you’re not using the clippers. 

Manufacturer’s Specs

  • Style: Pliers
  • Size: 4.75 inches long (small size)
  • Blade material: Stainless steel
  • Colors: Blue, light blue

What We Like

  • Built to last
  • Produces a clean cut
  • Lifetime warranty

What We Don’t Like

  • Limited colors
  • May lock into place while using


If you want to give pliers-style clippers a try, these are some of the best cat clippers. They get the job done without breaking the bank, and they make sure your pet stays happy and comfortable during trimming.

H&H Pets Claw Treatment – Cat Dog Nail Clippers

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H&H created these nail clippers specifically for small pets such as kittens and puppies. If you’ve got a kitten or a young cat, these scissors-style nail clippers may be just what you’re looking for. They are lightweight, durable, and gentle.

The stainless steel blade is described as durable and hypoallergenic. The slip-proof handles are easy to grip and will help you avoid accidents. A word of caution though: these clippers have no guard on them, so you have to know the right place to cut on the nail.

These are not the sharpest clippers, but they should work well for small kittens with their small, thin claws.

Manufacturer’s Specs

  • Style: Scissors
  • Size: 3 inches long
  • Blade material: Stainless steel
  • Colors: Black, light blue

What We Like

  • Great option for kittens
  • Slip-proof
  • 3-year warranty

What We Don’t Like

  • Too small for large hands
  • Could be sharper


For kittens and small cats just getting used to having their nails cut, these clippers are a good choice. However, your cat may outgrow them, as the blade may not be sharp enough to handle an adult cat’s claws.

gonicc Dog & Cat Pets Nail Clippers and Trimmers

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Gonicc has produced a pair of top-notch plier-style clippers with several convenient features. Like most plier clippers, these come with a safety stop guard so you won’t have to worry about cutting your cat’s claws too short. The sliding lock is built into the handle and must be pushed up to lock, reducing the chances that it will lock in place while you’re using it.

Also, this pair of clippers comes with a nail file built into the handle–simply slide it out to smooth away any sharp edges that may be left after trimming nails.

The ergonomic handles fit easily into most hand sizes and are easy to grip. The high-quality stainless steel blades are sharp and will slice through nails with ease. These clippers are a bit more expensive than other similar styles, but they appear to make up for it in offering a high-quality product.

Manufacturer’s Specs

  • Style: pliers
  • Size: 8 inches long
  • Blade material: stainless steel
  • Colors: Black, light blue, white

What We Like

  • High-quality design
  • Built-in nail file
  • Sharp blades get the job done

What We Don’t Like

  • May be too large for some cats
  • Lock may fail over time


These clippers certainly have their perks, and they are a good, solid buy if you’re willing to pay the extra money, but some cats may be intimidated by their large size.

Razoo Cat Nail Grinder

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Whether you have a grumpy Husky or a skittish tabby, nail trimming won’t ever be nerve-wracking with Razoo dog/cat nail grinder. Using our electric nail grinder is a smooth and painless way to trim and groom your furry friend’s stubborn nails.

The advanced Japanese diamond stone head of our dog/cat dremel nail grinder grinds enables a safe trimming and a polished round finish without any sharp angles. The stone doesn’t just efficiently grind nails but is also wear-resistant.

This professional-grade nail grinder is mostly marketed for dogs, but they also work wonderfully as a cat nail trimmer. One of the best things about this grinder is that it makes very little noise. Its “whisper-quiet” motor and vibrations will not frighten your cat as many other nail grinders would.

This nail grinder will provide a smooth, painless nail trimming experience for your cat. With two different speeds and a diamond-coated grinding wheel, it will carefully polish and sand even the hardest nails, giving them a smooth, rounded finish.

This grinder comes with a lifetime guarantee, and the company claims that should you experience any issues with the grinder, they will work to solve your issues within 24 hours. That’s quite a promise! 

Manufacturer’s Specs

  • Style: electric grinder
  • Size: 5.9 inches long
  • Blade material: diamond-coated grinding wheel
  • Colors: black and white

What We Like

  • Up to 10-hour battery life
  • Lifetime guarantee
  • Low noise and vibration levels

What We Don’t Like

  • Takes a long time to grind each claw
  • Creates “nail dust” in the air


If traditional clippers just aren’t working for your cat, give this grinder a try. Though it may take longer to sand down all your cat’s claws, it will likely prove to be a less-stressful experience for your cat.

Ruff ‘n Ruffus Cat Nail Grinder

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Whether you have a pup, a kitty, a bird, a hamster, a guinea pig, or a whole menagerie, trimming your pet’s nails is an important part of keeping your furry friend happy and healthy. For a lot of pets (and their owners), though, the trimming process can be uncomfortable or even painful, which can cause a lot of anxiety.

But trimming your pet’s nails doesn’t have to be an unpleasant experience — you just need the right tools. With the Ruff ‘n Ruffus Pet Nail Grinder, pampering your pet is easier and more comfortable than ever!

This rechargeable nail grinder comes with a couple of freebies: in addition to the grinding tool, charging cord, and storage bag, you also get a spare grinding wheel and a pair of pliers-style clippers.

This diamond-bit grinder is 40% quieter than most nail grinders on the market, comes with two speeds and a protective cover for a safe and painless claw trimming experience. The plier clippers come with a protective guard and a manual lock for safety purposes.

With the two types of trimmers included, this nail trimming kit gives you room to experiment and see what might work best for your cat.

Manufacturer’s Specs

  • Style: electric grinder and pliers
  • Size: unknown
  • Blade material: diamond-coated grinding wheel and stainless steel
  • Colors: black and blue

What We Like

  • 100% satisfaction guarantee
  • Comes with an extra grinding bit
  • Includes free plier clippers

What We Don’t Like

  • Short battery life
  • Takes a long time to file nails down


If you want to try a couple of different clippers at once, this is a great way to get a nail grinder and plier clippers for one price.

Friends Forever 6 in 1 Professional Cat Grooming Kit

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This professional grooming kit comes with six different grooming products, including a pair of pliers-style clippers and a nail file. It also includes a convenient carrying case. 

The nail file slides into the bottom of the clipper handle, so you can easily use it to file sharp edges down after trimming your cat’s nails. Like most plier clippers, this pair includes a built-in guard so you don’t cut the nails too short.

Other products included in the kit are a deshedding comb, grooming comb, dematting comb, and grooming brush.

Manufacturer’s Specs

  • Style: pliers
  • Size: 6 inches
  • Blade material: stainless steel
  • Colors: Black and orange

What We Like

  • Convenient size fits easily in most hands
  • Clean cut
  • Extra grooming supplies

What We Don’t Like

  • Blades may become dull
  • Expensive


If you’re looking for a full grooming kit and not just a pair of clippers, this set may be just what you are looking for. If you don’t need all the extra supplies though, you’d do better to spend less money on another set of clippers.

Cat Claw Clippers

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Resco was the original company to invent the guillotine-style clippers way back in 1937. Now, more than 80 years later, they remain some of the best cat claw clippers you can buy. 

Coming in three different sizes, these stainless steel clippers are sharp and cut through a claw in one quick, easy movement. Though the blade may dull over time, the company offers replacement blades for a nominal charge, and blades are easy to change out.

With a lifetime warranty, these clippers are made to last.

Manufacturer’s Specs

  • Style: guillotine
  • Size: 5 inches tall
  • Blade material: stainless steel
  • Colors: silver/metallic

What We Like

  • Lifetime warranty
  • Quality-made product
  • Sharp, clean cut

What We Don’t Like

  • May cause painful pressure on a cat’s nails
  • Difficult to grip

Guide: Types of Claw Clippers

As you’ve probably noticed, we looked at several different types of nail clippers in the reviews above. What are the main differences between these different types of claw clippers? And which type is best for your cat?

Guillotine Clippers

As the name suggests, these clippers work much like a guillotine. You insert the claw into the circular opening, squeeze the handles, and a blade will come up and slice through the claw, “decapitating” the sharp edge.

Guillotine clippers are simple handheld tools that are generally easy to use, but they may not work well for some aggressive cats. If your cat squirms around while their claw is hooked into the opening, they may rip the clippers from your hand and might even tear their claw. 

Guillotine clippers work best for calm cats that are pretty good about sitting still during the nail-trimming process. For this reason, they may work well for older cats or cats with a relaxed disposition. They should not be used for high-energy kittens or excitable cats.

Scissor Clippers

Scissor clippers have wide, looped handles, similar to scissors. They are spring action; squeezing the handles presses the cutting blades together, and releasing the handles allows the blades to come apart. Use scissor clippers as you would scissors: place the cat’s claw between the blades, squeeze the handles, and “cut” the sharp edge away.

A lot of people prefer scissor clippers because they are easy to grip and can be used to trim even aggressive cats’ claws. The tips of the blades are rounded to reduce the chance of injury, and the relatively large cutting edge of the blade makes it easier to quickly align them with the claw.

Scissor clippers are an ideal choice for cats of many different temperament and activity levels.

Plier Clippers

Plier clippers, as you probably guessed, look and work like pliers. Placing the cat’s claw between the two clipping blades, use the same squeezing action as other types of manual clippers to clip off the sharp edge of the claw.

Plier clippers have a smaller cutting surface than scissor clippers, so it may take a little more patience to get the claw in the right place if you have an aggressive or squirmy cat. The top points of the plier blades, like scissor clipper blades, are rounded to prevent injury. 

Plier clippers are generally a good choice for relaxed or mildly active cats. 

Electric Grinders

Electric grinders work by grinding away the sharp tip of a cat’s claw, much as a cat might do in the wild by scratching at rocks and dirt. The electrically-powered grinding tip is hard and rough, like sandpaper, and as it moves around over the nail, it smooths away the sharpness.

Electric grinders are a great alternative to the manual squeeze-action clippers most people use, but they are also more expensive. They also make noise, which may scare some skittish kitties. That said, if your cat can get used to the noise, they may come to tolerate and even enjoy the “pedicure” of having their claws smoothed away with a nail grinder.

Electric grinders may be a good choice for all ages of cats. If you start using a grinder when your cat is young, she may have a better tendency to get used to it over time. If your cat is afraid of noises or is overly active, an electric grinder may not be the best choice.

Q: Should I Trim My Cat’s Claws?

Trimming your cat’s claws is beneficial in several ways. For one thing, cats with untrimmed claws can easily get their claws snagged on blankets, furniture, and carpeting, and may even become so tangled that they can’t get free. Even if they don’t become trapped, they are more likely to ruin bedding and furniture by scratching if their claws aren’t kept short.

In addition, if you don’t trim your cat’s claws, they may scratch you without meaning to. Cats love to knead their humans, but if their claws are sharp, even this simple activity may cause painful scratches. If you have multiple cats, they may scratch each other while playing and wrestling.

If a cat’s claws are allowed to grow too long, the claws may begin to interfere with the cat’s normal behaviors. The claws may get in their way and force them to walk differently. They may even cause the cat to scratch herself accidentally. 

Q: How Often Should I Trim My Cat’s Claws?

The answer will largely depend on the cat.

Most cats try to keep their claws maintained by scratching on anything and everything. If your cat stays indoors and doesn’t have anything to scratch, you will probably need to trim their claws fairly often–anytime they start to feel sharp or look noticeably long.

On the other hand, if your cat goes outside a lot, likes to dig in sand, or has a gravel area where they enjoy playing, you may not have to trim the claws as often.

The key is to pay attention to your cat’s claws. When you notice them getting long or sharp, that’s the time to trim them. Over time, you’ll start to get an idea of just how often your cat needs her claws trimmed, based on her activity level and growth rate.

Guide: How to Trim a Cat’s Claws

So, by now, you understand the importance of keeping your cat’s nails trimmed, and you’ve read our review of a bunch of different clippers that you could use. Maybe you’ve even picked out which clippers you want to try. Now the question is, how do you do it? What is the best method for trimming your cat’s claws? We’ll take a look at the basic steps below.

Choose Your Clippers

If you already have clippers, or if you’ve already chosen which ones you want to buy, then great! You’re ready for the next step. If not, consider the different kinds of clippers available and try to decide which ones you think will work best for you and your cat. 

Calm Your Kitty

Once you’ve chosen your clippers, it’s time to get started. Every cat is different, and the exact methods you use to try and keep your kitty calm are entirely up to you. You may try petting her, letting her sit on your lap, or wrapping her in a blanket. 

You might give her a few treats. If necessary, you may need to hold the cat, wrapping an arm around her and letting her feel your pressure on her back and sides.

Whatever methods you choose, if you can help your cat feel calm and relaxed before you begin clipping nails, it may help the entire process go more smoothly.

One Claw at a Time

This may seem like obvious advice–of course, with any clippers, you can only cut one claw at a time. But as you’re cutting, pay attention to the body language of your cat. Try to predict whether she’s going to try to spring away, bite or scratch you, or sit there calmly as you trim her claws.

Depending on how your cat reacts, you can make little adjustments throughout the process. Be careful not to cut any more than is necessary–only the sharp tip. If you cut too deeply, you may cut the blood vessels in the claw, causing your cat to bleed and possibly making them scratch and try to get away. 

Always be very careful while cutting claws, but try to cut quickly and efficiently so your kitty doesn’t run out of patience and try to get away.

Move from one paw to another according to what feels most natural for the way your cat is positioned.

Let Your Cat Go Play

As soon as you’re done cutting, if your cat is anxious to jump down, let her go. Chances are, she won’t want to stay and snuggle or be brushed. She’ll probably want to run off for some “me-time” and be away from you for a while. Don’t take it personally. She won’t stay mad at you forever, and she’ll appreciate the personal space.

Clean Up

While your cat is off doing her own thing, clean up the claw pieces. They probably flew this way and that while you were cutting them, so you may need to use a vacuum to get them all. If you don’t clean them up now, you may find them later with your bare feet–ouch!

Guide: How to Trim Claws on an Aggressive Cat

So, what if your cat is more aggressive than most? Does the thought of trimming your cat’s claws give you nightmares of long, bleeding scratches and hissing, fur-flying fights? 

If your cat tends to fight you every time you trim her nails, don’t be discouraged. The process you use to trim the nails will be similar to the one discussed above, but there are some extra tips and tricks that will hopefully make the battle a little less painful for you and your aggressive kitty.

Use Scissor Clippers or an Electric Grinder

Scissor clippers are likely going to be the best option for an aggressive cat, but an electric grinder may also be a good option if your cat can handle the noise. 

Keep a Firm Hold on Your Cat

Holding your aggressive cat properly can be the hardest part of trimming her claws. You want to hold her firm enough that she can’t squirm out of your grip, keep her legs contained so she doesn’t scratch you, but you also want to avoid hurting her in any way.

You could try wrapping her in a towel or blanket and holding her like a baby. Make sure the blanket isn’t wrapped so tightly it causes injury or breathing trouble. If holding your cat like a baby is out of the question, try setting her on a couch or table. 

Keeping her wrapped in the blanket, wrap your arms around her and bend your upper body over her, enclosing her in a “cave” of sorts.

If nothing else works, you might need to enlist help from a friend or family member. One of you can hold the cat while the other one does the nail clipping. This may be the best way to avoid injury to both you and your cat, but it isn’t always feasible if you don’t have someone to help you. 

Touch Your Cat’s Paws Often

In between claw trimming time, try to get your cat used to the idea of having their paws touched. Start by carefully running a finger over the top of the paw. If the cat tolerates that, do it more often, applying light pressure. Try massaging the bottom of the paw. 

Be ready for the cat to try biting or scratching you, and don’t keep doing it if it’s upsetting her. But the more often you touch her paws, with any luck, she’ll begin to get used to it and will better tolerate having her claws trimmed.

Help Your Cat Get Used to the Clippers

If you use an electric grinder, it may be extremely helpful to turn it on now and then just to help your cat become familiar with the sound it makes. This may even be true of manual clippers. If your cat knows the sound the clippers make, it may help her become more comfortable around the clippers.

Final Thoughts

While you can’t make your cat enjoy getting her nails trimmed, there are things you can do to help the chore go more smoothly both for you and your cat. 

We’ve given you our opinion on the best nail clippers on the market, as well as some tips on how to trim your cat’s nails, how often to do so, and the different types of clippers you have to choose from. With a little luck and a lot of patience, you may be able to take the fight out of nail-trimming time.