The best method for clipping a cat's claws is to hold the cat gently in one arm while using the opposite hand to lift the cat's paw. Alternatively, the cat is placed on a table, with one paw at a time lifted for clipping. Various tools are available for trimming a cat's nails, including special scissors and pliers.
Cats dislike having their back claws trimmed, so it is best to start there before the cat loses patience. It is not necessary to trim all claws at one time. Any tools used to clip a cat's claws are best kept sharp to avoid splitting a nail or otherwise injuring the cat. Trimming nails of kittens is advantageous because it teaches the cat to accept the activity. In addition, kittens benefit from having their claws trimmed because their scratching ability is limited.
Many cat owners attempt to train their cats not to scratch furniture and other household objects, and some cap their cat's claws with plastic tips to limit their destructive capacity. The ASPCA advises that regular trimming of a cat's claws is the best way to keep scratching and clawing under control. The organization discourages permanent removal of claws because of the severe pain it causes to cats.