top of page

PAWdicure 101: A Guide to Trimming Your Dog's Nails

Trimming your dog's nails can be a daunting task, but it doesn't have to be! With the right tools and some helpful tips, you can make this process quick, easy, and even fun. In this guide, we'll go over the different options for tools you can use and what to do if you accidentally cut your dog's quick.

Tools You'll Need

To trim your dog's nails, you'll need a few tools. Here are some options:

  1. Nail clippers: These are the most common tools used for trimming a dog's nails. They come in two types: guillotine-style and scissor-style. Guillotine-style clippers are best for small dogs, while scissor-style clippers are better for larger dogs.

  2. Dremel: A Dremel is a rotary tool that grinds down your dog's nails instead of cutting them. This option is great for dogs with black nails, as it's hard to see where the quick is.

How to Trim Your Dog's Nails

Now that you have your tools, it's time to trim your dog's nails. Here are the steps:

  1. Get your dog comfortable: Socializing your dog to nail clippers is an important step in ensuring that they feel comfortable and relaxed during nail trimming sessions. First feed your dog treats in the presence of nail clippers. Encourage your dog to sniff the nail clippers and hand them lots of treats for doing so. Then practice grabbing your dogs paw while you hand them treats. After a few sessions try trimming one nail. As your dog becomes more comfortable start trimming all of their nails in one session. By introducing your dog to the clippers in a positive and gradual manner, you can help them become more comfortable with the process and ensure that nail trimming sessions are stress-free for everyone involved.

  2. Locate the quick: Before you start trimming, locate the quick. The quick is the pink part of the nail that contains nerves and blood vessels. You want to avoid cutting this part, as it will cause your dog pain and bleeding.

  3. Start trimming: Use your clippers, Dremel, or nail grinder to trim the nail. Cut the nail just below the quick. If you're using a Dremel or grinder, use a low speed and take breaks to avoid overheating the nail.

  4. Repeat: Repeat the process on each nail, giving your dog breaks and treats as needed.

What to Do if You Cut the Quick

Accidents happen, and if you accidentally cut your dog's quick, try not to worry. Here is what you need to do to stop the bleeding:

  1. Apply pressure: If the nail is bleeding, apply pressure with a clean cloth or towel.

  2. Use styptic powder: Styptic powder is a product that helps stop bleeding. Apply a small amount to the end of the nail to stop the bleeding. If you don't have styptic powder on hand cornstarch can be used in a pinch.

Trimming your dog's nails doesn't have to be scary. With the right tools and some helpful tips, you can make this process quick, easy, and even fun. Remember to always avoid the quick, and if you accidentally cut it, apply pressure and use styptic powder. Happy trimming!

If you want more information on socialization your dog to nail trimming or anything else sign up for a free trial and join our Ask a Trainer: Office Hours


Commenting has been turned off.
bottom of page