How to Trim Dog Nails in 5 Steps


Every time I trim my dog nails, I think about all pet parents. Cutting your dog nails make a lot of parents a little twitchy. The reason behind it, many don’t know the right way of “ how to trim dog nails”, also the thinking about inflicting pain your pooch may have. As a result, they outsource clipping dog nails. If you’re fine with this approach, then go with it.

However, you should be in a position to make appointments on a regular basis. Cutting dog nails aren’t something you can ignore, actually, long nails can affect your pooch posture and joints. Unfortunately, this can cause injury if your dog catches on something or their nails curl under and dig into their paws.

There are several advantages to home clip dog nails. Not only you can remain the safe length of the nails, but also, you will avoid the car ride stress or the groomer visit stress your dog may battle. As said, no one knows your furry friend better than you! You’re the only one who can comfort them if you see signs of stress.

You may have a bad experience in the past, but, all you need is some extra time and a pup-friendly approach. By the time your doggie will be able to tolerate with regular nail trimming. 

The anatomy of a dog nails

black-dog-nailsBefore you learn how to trim dog nails, you should know the anatomy of dog nails. The canine nails are composed of many layers. The only part we actually see is the outer part “the shell”. Inside the shell is a soft inner layer that works as a protective coating known as the quick.

The quick contains blood vessels and nerves that begin at the base of the nails. If you cut the quick of your dog’s nails, it will cause yelping and bleeding.

If your dog nails are white colored, it will be easy for you to see the quick. It has a pink color segment near the nail base.

Unfortunately, if you have a dog with dark or black nails it will be a little bit difficult to locate the quick. Once you did, you shouldn’t trim closer than 2 to 3 millimeters away.

How to trim dog nails with the right tools?

The next thing you should be aware of when it comes to how to trim dog nails? There are many options for home trimming tools. Some parents prefer clippers, others like grinders. You can choose the tool the makes you and your pooch feel most at ease.

From my personal experience. I find out that grinders provide more control and smoothness. A dermal tool is one perfect example. It flies nails down instead of cutting them.

There are also clippers which come in two varieties: scissor and guillotine. Guillotine clippers are designed with a handle and a blade. When you squeeze the handle the blade clip your dogs nails.

In fact, there’s nothing called right or wrong tool for dog nails. In fact, you should choose the tool that you find perfect for your pooch. If your dog becomes nervous about the noise or the vibration, then a dermal won’t be the right choice.

Try to figure out if your dog had a bad experience with a specific trimming tool, so you can choose a different one in order to create a low-stress trimming experience.

How to prepare yourself for clipping your dog’s nails?white-dog-nails

The first step to do for safely and pleasing trimming experience is practice and prep-work. At first, you could try different trimming tools to decide which one is a perfect tool for your pooch. You can daily hold your dog’s paws and touch their nail for a few seconds.

After that, you should reward and praise them. A week later, you can start to introduce the chosen trimming tool to your dog with a few tasty treats. Start to clip your dog nails for a few moments, then, praise them. Perform this exercise daily for a week or two until you and your pooch will feel comfortable about the trimming process.

You are ready now to try an actual trim. You should be prepared with some cotton balls as a precaution. As mentioned, if the quick is cut, it may cause bleeding. Finally, choose a comfy location with bright lighting where you can start clipping your doggie’s nails.

How to trim dog nails using clippers?

  1. Hold the clipper tool you chose with one hand.
  2. Hold your pooch’s paw with the other hand.
  3. Start to cut the tip of your doggie’s nail.
  4. Trim about 2 mm at a time.
  5. Stop trimming if you see a pick colored oval. It indicates that you’re around the quick.

How to trim dog nails using grinders?

  1. Like using the clippers, hold the grinder tool with one hand and firmly hold your pup’s paws with the other one.
  2. Gently apply the grinder on the tip of your dog’s nail for about two seconds.
  3. Praise your furry friend.
  4. Repeat the process again.
  5. Continue until you see the quick.

Tips you should follow

dog-treats-while-trimmingYou should try to figure out how far you can clip the nails, I know, it’s the most unsettling aspect of nail trimming to most of the dog’s parents.

The quick in dark nails are more tricky than the white nails. You can switch on a flashlight or penlight under your dog’s paws. By that, you can notice the quick easily.

Some of nail trimming tools come with a guard. To be on the safe side, you can flip up the guard, it will allow you to clip a tiny amount of the nail.

You should be extremely patient and always praise your doggie. So if your dog has signs of canine stress, take a break. There’s no need to rush!

After you finish I think you should reward yourself, maybe a piece of chocolate.

If you have your own tips, you can share with us. But, if this is your first time to try clipping your dog’s nails at home, please share your experience.  


No Comments

Write a Reply or Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *