Dog CareDog Grooming

Dog nail trimming tips

Dog nail trimming

Dog nail trimming tips, this topic is very important part of the grooming dog process.  Regardless of breed, all dogs have claws which grow constantly and may, at times need some attention to prevent discomfort or injury. If your dog has an active lifestyle their claws will usually naturally wear down as he walks on hard surfaces.

Problem claws therefore tend to be an issue more in older dogs that exercise less, or dogs which spend more time on soft surfaces. If claws get too long this can cause discomfort, pressure and in extreme circumstances, significant pain to the toes and paws and even the foot and leg joints.

A clear audible sound of tapping as your dog walks on a hard surface is an indication that the nails are too long. As the dog stands, the claws should not touch the ground.

It is possible to make dog nail trim at your home. If you are unsure or need help it is worth speaking with your local veterinary nurse or groomer, who will be able to offer simple advice and guidance.

Dog nail trimming tips

Before you start Dog nail trimming

1- The first tip of dog nail trimming is ensuring that you have the proper tools for the job. When purchasing the nail clippers ensure that the handle has plenty of grip to prevent your hand slipping and the blades are sharp stainless steel.

There are a variety of devices for maintaining the length of your dog’s claws and it is often a matter of personal preference which tool to use.

2- The 2nd tip of dog nail trimming is teaching your dog to accept nail trimming from an early age. Handle their feet, use an ordinary nail file to file the soft claws of puppies and always reward good behavior. A positive approach at this stage will make life much easier in the future.

3- The 3rd tip of dog nail trimming is having someone to hold the dog for you whilst you clip the nails. Be as positive as you can – if the dog senses that you are nervous then it will become stressed and worried.

4- The 4th tip of dog nail trimming is that the dog nail trim process is not essential that all four feet are done at the same time. If your dog gets fidgety or restless, then take a break and come back later to finish the job.

5- The 5th tip of dog nail trimming is clipping the nails regularly. Whilst you are checking the claws, this is a good time to also check the pads and feet for any injury or infection which may require attention.

Check between the toes and the pads to ensure there are no signs of infection or soreness. If there are any problems with the claws, or the feet are painful then seek advice from your vet before proceeding.

6- The 6th tip of dog nail trimming is not all dogs will accept having their nails clipped. Do not put yourself or your dog at risk by struggling at home. Most veterinary surgeries have nurses who will do this for you relatively cheaply, or alternatively a qualified dog groomer will also be able to provide this service.

Beware about the nail anatomy 

How to trim dog nails at home - Nail trim dog tips

7- The 7th tip of dog nail trimming is bewaring about the nail anatomy. Each claw of your dog features a quick, which contains the nerves and blood vessels supplying the nail. It is very important that when clipping the nails you do not make any contact with the quick as this will cause pain and bleeding and will probably affect whether your dog will be comfortable in the future having his nails trimmed.

If your dog has pale or clear nails you will be able to see the quick running through the center of the nail and trim the end of the nail to within approximately 2mm of where the quick finishes.

However, if your dog has dark or even black claws you will be unable to identify the quick. In these cases, only remove a little nail each time, or it may be advisable to seek assistance from a vet or groomer. Another alternative, which many people find less frightening, is to file the nails. Tools are available which will quickly and smoothly file the nail and provide much more control over the amount that is removed and contact with the quick.

Steps of dog nail trim

Firstly ensure that you have the proper tools for the job. When purchasing the nail clippers ensure that the handle has plenty of grip to prevent your hand slipping and the blades are sharp stainless steel. Before starting read the instructions on the cutting tool carefully.

If you have a small dog, it is often more comfortable to sit on a chair and have them on your lap. For larger dogs, sit on the floor with them. It may be necessary to have an assistant to hold the dog and reassure them.

8-The 8th tip of dog nail trimming is following these steps:

Dog nail trimming tips - Dog nail trim steps

A- Take hold of your dog’s foot and apply light pressure to the underside of the pads, this will make the claw stick out. Begin at the end of the nail and clip at a 45 degree angle with the cutting blade of the clipper towards the claw. If you are clipping dark nails, only remove thin cuttings from the end of the nail to prevent damaging the quick.

B- Be decisive, making a positive, smooth squeeze, whilst holding the nail clipper firmly. If the nail cutter does not cut cleanly and easily through the nail, then the blade may be blunt and need replacing, or the nail cutter may not be strong enough to clip the dog’s nails. Some dogs, especially large or old dogs can have extremely hard nails. If this is the case try an alternative clipper or consider an electric filer.

C- If you see a small dark spot in the centre of the nail then you have removed too much and have caught the quick. Stop cutting immediately. This dark spot is where the live quick begins.

D- Trim each of the claws on all four feet that need to be done. However it may be that not all of the claws require attention. Check before starting exactly which ones do need to be clipped to avoid unnecessary work. Often the claws on the back feet require less trimming than those on the front.

E- Remember that the dew claw, which is on the inside of the leg, above the foot, will also need to be trimmed. These will curl and grow into the skin like an in-growing toenail, if they are a not also clipped back regularly. However, once again be careful to avoid removing too much nail and cutting the quick, which will lead to pain and blood loss for the dog.

F- When you have finished use a nail file to remove any sharp edges and shape the nails.

The frequency that your dog’s nails need clipping will depend on various elements, how often they walk on pavements, how hard the nails are, etc. However the more often you trim them, the easier it will become. It is advisable to do this more frequently and remove less rather than cutting large pieces infrequently. Always remember to reward your dog after having their nails clipped and ensure the experience is as positive as possible to reduce future difficulties caused through fear or pain.

Excessively Long Claws

9-The 9th tip of dog nail trimming is clipping excessively long claws. As the claw gets longer, unfortunately the quick also gets longer. Therefore, even if the claws are very long it is important to only cut a little at a time to avoid cutting the quick.

As the nails are clipped back in small stages, so the quick will recede gradually. Wait a few days or a week between each small cut, then once they are at a manageable length cut them regularly as required.

Dog nail trimming tips - Dog nail trim steps

Dog nail trim with a nail file

10-The 10th tip of dog nail trimming is doing the dog nail trim process with using a nail file.  A nail file can be a less worrying alternative to nail clippers. For dogs with brittle nails it will be more effective than clipping.

  • Hold the paw firmly in one hand applying gentle pressure to the underside of the pads.
  • Turn on the electric grinder and pass the filing tip across the nail applying a constant pressure. The high speed grit stone will file the nail quickly and efficiently.
  • Start filing from the bottom of the nail, slowly moving towards the tip and moving the grinder from side to side on each nail.
  • Avoid tangling hair on long-haired breeds – push the hair away from the paw or alternatively use a nylon stocking over the paw and push the nails through the nylon.

Cutting the Quick

11-The 11th tip of dog nail trimming is making every effort not to cut the quick, if it does happen then don’t panic. The nail will begin to bleed, so hold some tissue or cotton wool tightly to the end of the nail. The bleeding should stop in about 5 minutes, however if your dog licks the nail then the blood will take longer to clot.

There are a few products on the market to stop the nail bleeding, for example use a styptic pencil, styptic powder or styptic pads to stop blood flow. The nail will be very painful for the dog for a few days, especially when walking and there may be some fear next time you want to cut his nails.


When Should I Start Clipping my Dog’s Nails?

It is rather vital that you get started trimming your pet’s nails whenever they truly are a puppy. If you obtain them more comfortable using their claws trimmed early , it is going to make everything easier continue.

To receive your pup confident with having its claws trimmed, then you should first get your dog more comfortable with the clipping sight and noise of their clipper. Provide them with a treat or peanut butter and then clip on the clippers close to their nostrils without actually trimming dog’s nails.

After a time doing this process, they’ll certainly be delighted to observe the clipper. Ensure that you take things slowly, as you never desire to produce your puppy fearful of these clippers. When trimming your dog’s nails, so it is very important that you don’t clip the dog quick.

Where is the Quick on Black Dog Nails?

How to trim dog nails at home - Nail trim dog tips

The quick is the component of the nail that’s colored differently and nearer into your pet’s leg. On certain nails, the quick will probably be pink and also the true nail will probably be white, while others, it can appear black . This is as it gets harder. If you are trimming black pet dog nails You Can’t see the dog quick from outside its nail.

In the event that you clip this quick, it won’t simply cause enormous pain to your pet, however, the trimming will probably heavily bleed. Prevent cutting the dog quick by making multiple tiny cuts and also making your way up slowly before going too much.

The secret to trimming black pet nails is to detect the pulp. The ideal method to pick on where you should quit cutting is when you find and see the pulp.

Since you cut, you will notice a white color on the trim surface. This usually means that you have not reached the pulp. The pulp is situated only before the quick. It’s black in color but it will be identified with a circular appearance.

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Dog nail trimming
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Dog nail trimming
Dog nail trimming is very important part of the grooming dog process. You will learn in this article 1- Dog nail trimming tips 2-Steps of dog nail trim 3-trimming excessively long claws 4-Dog nail trim with a nail file 5-When Should I Start Clipping my Dog’s Nails? 6-Where is the Quick on Black Dog Nails
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