Trimming Maine Coon Paw Tufts

Proper Maine Coon grooming, especially trimming Maine Coon paw tufts is so important for having a happy and healthy Maine Coon cat.

Maine Coons are renowned for their thick luscious coats, bushy tails, and tufted paws. So it’s no wonder that the proper method for cleaning and trimming them has been hotly debated!

Maine Coon fur on and around the paws can grow quite long. This fur can become easily knotted and this can be uncomfortable for your Maine Coon cat. Owners should ensure their Maine Coons paw is properly groomed and any long tufts are carefully trimmed with sharp, clean, scissors.

If you are preparing to trim your Maine Coons paws and claws for the first time, or perhaps you are a seasoned Maine Coon owner who just wants to double-check their method, you’ve arrived at the right place!

Trimming Maine Coon paw tufts is not an overly difficult task. But, it is one that requires the right methodology and attention to detail.

Read ahead for trimming tips and tricks for you and your Maine Coon.

Maine Coon Paw Tufts

Maine Coons are unique and interesting felines, and perhaps the coolest and most mysterious domestic cat breed in North America!

They developed thick, warm, coats and lovely tufted paws that served them amazingly well in the Maine wilderness, whilst also making them look as cute as a button.

These highly desirable cats have furry tufts around their “ankles” and between their toes. This combined with the large Maine Coon paw size protected their feet from rocks, stones, ice, and snow.

Your Maine Coons tufted paws may be cute but they do require a little attention from their owners, on a regular basis.

Trimming Maine Coon toe tufts, however, has become a frequently debated topic on the internet!

Whilst some people argue that Maine Coon cats must need their tufty toes, conversely, Maine Coons no longer live in the woods or the surrounding countryside so it is not like they are in dire need of extra protection or warmth.

In fact, some Maine Coons never even leave their house!

If you were wondering how often to trim cat toe tufts there is no hard and fast rule.

Their tufts are perfectly fine growing long and wild. The only issues arise if the cat toe tufts are particularly thick and suffer from matting and trapped debris.

Cats tend to pick up grit and grime on their feet and matted tufts only accentuate that.

Therefore, by keeping your Maine Coons toe tufts neatly trimmed you can keep them clean and free of foreign objects.

You should only feel compelled to trim a cat’s toe tufts if they start to become a problem (source 1).

Should I Trim The Hair Between My Cats Paws?

Long-haired cats tend to have long hair all over, rather than only being confined to one place.

Thus, a Maine Coon will tend to get long hairs growing between its paws and up against its, sometimes sensitive, toes.

With this in mind, many owners are left wondering should I trim my cat’s toe tufts. Unfortunately, the answer is not always super clear.

Here is a simple breakdown of when you should, or should not, trim the hair between a cat’s paws:

When To Trim The Hair Between My Cat’s Paws:

  • If the fur on your cat’s paws is bothering him/her and causing them to lick repetitively and chew their feet.
  • When the fur is beginning to matte and turn into a knotty mess.
  • If your vet recommends that you trim them.
  • If they are inadvertently carrying litter from their litter box around with them.

When Not To Trim The Hair Between My Cat’s Paws:

  • Because you are bored!
  • Because you want to style your cat to look “better”.
  • If your Maine Coon spends a lot of time outside in the cold they will really appreciate their long-toe tufts.

How To Trim Your Cat’s Paw Tufts

Trimming your cat’s paw tufts does not have to be a tedious task, for you or your Maine Coon.

It is important to understand how to keep a Maine Coon clean, so here are some cat grooming tips that will act as a guide when trimming your Maine Coon cat’s paw tufts (source 1):

1. Making Them Comfortable

The first step is to create a comfortable setting to trim your Maine Coon cat’s paw tufts.

2. Touching Their Paws

Get your Maine Coon used to you touching their feet so they are less likely to kick and squirm when you try to trim their toe tufts.

3. Scissors

Look for the obvious stray paw hairs that you can quickly trim.

Carefully cut this fur as close to their paw as possible, without actually touching their paw.

4. Paw Fur Trimmers

Always use a reliable cat paw hair trimmer, like this one sold on Amazon. This is one of the best cat paw hair trimmers’ I have ever used.

When it comes to how to trim cat paw fur, the trimmer simply follows the outlines of the cat’s paws and trims away wayward hairs.

The trimmer, while safe to the touch, should come into little to no contact with the skin of your cat.

A paw trimmer can fit neatly between the pads of your Maine Coons paws.

Maine Coon Paw Pads

Maine Coon paw pads are incredible!

They are made from fatty tissue that protects their delicate feet and provides comfortable support to walk on.

The paw pads protect their feet from sharp sticks and stones as well as help keep them warm.

All cats have similar paws but there are some overarching differences to take note of.

The biggest difference between Maine Coon paws vs normal cat paws is that Maine Coon paw pads have a very wide base that helps them walk in the snow.

The wide base acts like a snowshoe and gives the Maine Coon far more stable support than a normal cat would have whilst walking through the snow.

Historically, many Maine Coons used to be polydactyl which means they have an extra toe on each foot. This provided them with better support when climbing and running.

Fun Maine Coon Fact

Maine Coons paw pads tend to mirror their coat, and while most animals have black or grey paw pads, Maine Coons can have amazing tortoiseshell pads or rich red-brown colors!

Cat Breeds With Tufts Of Fur Between Their Toes

Maine Coons are not the only breed of cat with tufts of fur between their toes. In fact, cat ear tufts are far more common than you might think!

Here are some other cat breeds that are known for having tufts of fur between their toes:

  • Persian
  • Norwegian Forest Cat
  • Himalayan
  • Angora
  • Ragdoll
  • Siberian

Should You Trim Maine Coon Ear Tufts?

Maine Coons are known for their tufty fur that extends to their ear tufts.

They are not just there to look cute though, instead, they actually serve a very vital purpose.

Not all Maine Coons grow fantastical ear tufts, or even noticeable ones, though they all tend to have some ear fur. This is common in cat breeds that have had to adapt to living in very cold environments.

Maine Coon ear tufts start to grow during adolescence and continue to grow well into old age. Lengthy tufts can be a sign of old age!

Here is a quick breakdown of what purpose Maine Coon ear tufts serve and whether you should trim your cat’s ear tufts (source 1):

  • Warmth: Their tufts keep their heads and ears warm. Their ears are thin and exposed to the elements. Body warmth can escape through their ears quite quickly in cats and people alike so you should never trim a Maine Coon cat’s ear tufts.
  • Protection From Snow: Ear tufts will keep snow and ice from getting inside your cat’s ears and damaging their sensitive eardrums.
  • Protection From Mites: Ear hairs also serve to protect your cat’s ears from mites, however, they can also become infected during the process at which point they will need to be trimmed and cleaned thoroughly.
  • Self-Cleaning Ears: Cat’s ears are self-cleaning, just like ours. Unfortunately, sometimes ear tufts can prevent the cleaning process, and the ears just become blocked with wax and hair. This is a good indication that their ears could use a clean and trim.


By now, you should have a much better idea about how and when to trim your Maine Coons tufty paws and when to leave them alone.

Maine Coons are world renowned for their beautiful coats and lovely tufty feet, so it is important to make sure you do them justice!

Trimming Maine Coon paw tufts should be no trouble at all from now on, as long as you follow this guide.

Good luck to you and your kitty, after all, a haircut certainly feels like a team effort when it comes to cats.

Related Questions

Trim Ragdoll Paw Fur

Ragdoll cats should have their paw fur trimmed when it becomes uncomfortably long for the cat. However, their tufted paws are there by design and will not hurt the cat by growing super long. You will not harm the cat by trimming them but you also will not benefit them either.

Should I Trim My Cat’s Claws?

Cat claws should be trimmed every few weeks to keep them from growing too long and getting too sharp. It is cruel to declaw cats so you must maintain a regular claw trimming schedule.

Maine Coon Central

Hello! My name is Katrina Stewardson, and I’m a CRAZY CAT LADY! I've been in love with the Maine Coon cat breed ever since we welcomed an adorable male Maine Coon kitten into our home 10 years ago. We called him 'Pippin', but he also goes by the name ‘Pipsteroo’! Our enormous, kind-hearted cat genuinely thinks he's a dog and has convinced me that cats are Man's True Best Friend! UPDATE: We recently adopted two 4-year-old male Maine Coon cats. They are named Mika and Bali.

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