do cats nails fall off

Shedding The Old Nail

When your cat’s nail grows past the blood supply, the surrounding layer begins to crack to make room for the new nail. Each claw’s nail splits and falls every two to three months on average. The old layer either falls off on its own or is most likely removed by your cat’s scratching.

1.   Cat Nails Are Always Growing

Your cat’s nails will grow throughout its life, just like a human’s do. Because they live in an environment with a variety of textures that aid in keeping their claws under control, outdoor cats are less likely to experience this problem.

However, because indoor cats do not live in such rugged environments, their nails require extra attention. We can check your cat’s nails to make sure they’re healthy and clipped when you bring them in for a physical examination at the Feline Medical Clinic.

2.   Cats Shed Their Claw Sheaths

If your cat has been with you for some time, you might have found a claw-shaped husk laying around the house. That’s nothing to worry about. Cat claws are composed of keratin, which begins to degrade as the claw grows. They will eventually completely shed their claw sheaths, exposing a fresh, healthy nail underneath.

The key thing to remember about cat claws is that they typically shed their sheaths, but you should periodically examine your nails to see if a trim is required or if the claws are getting too close to the paw pad.

Is additional nail care required? Trimming the tips of cats’ nails reduces their tendency to scratch and shed their claws. Trimming can also prevent tearing nails. Sharp nails are painful to our sensitive tummies, so if your cat likes to sit on your belly and knead, you know you can benefit from the trims, too!

kitten scratching postHave you ever found what looks like your cat’s claw in the carpet or scratching post? Don’t worry, this is normal and healthy. Cats lose the outer sheath of their claws and reveal a sharper claw.

Establishing the habit of trimming your cat’s nails at an early age facilitates it. Clathing can be done by you or by a veterinarian or groomer. However, before you cut, make sure you are confident in your ability to trim safely. You don’t want to cut into kitty’s quick.

The cat’s claw husk, or outer sheath, peels off when it grows quickly beyond the blood supply, revealing a newer, sharper nail for climbing, hunting, and self-defense—even that darling blue mouse! Every two to three months, the tips of each toe shed their claws. Unexpectedly, cats bite to remove the sheaths covering their back claws while scratching to remove those covering their front claws. Claw sheaths come in various sizes, ranging from covering an entire nail to just the tip.


Is it normal for cats nails to shed?

As they grow, the outer layer loses its blood supply and sheds, leaving a sharper, healthier claw underneath. It’s a normal process and takes between two and three months for most cats’ claws.

Is it okay for a cat to lose a nail?

As for those pieces, yes, it’s completely normal for a cat to lose those. A cat’s claw grows from underneath, with new layers pushing the older ones out.

Do cats lose their nails naturally?

Cats Shed Their Claw Sheaths That’s nothing to worry about. Cat claws are made out of keratin, and as they grow, the material starts to die off. Eventually, they’ll shed their claw sheaths entirely, revealing a new and healthy nail underneath.