Many pets need to have their nails trimmed on a frequent basis. Most pets, especially those kept indoors, do not wear their nails down properly. Over a period of time, these nails grow to excessive length, and can damage furniture and carpets, scratch people, break easily, and often even become ingrown.
Proper care of your pet should include routine trimming of his or her nails. With many pets, this can be done easily at home with the proper training and practice.
To trim your dog’s nails you will need nail trimmers that are the right size for your dog. Ask one of our staff to help you pick the right size and type of nail trimmers for your pet.
You should also have some styptic powder (Kwik-Stop) on hand. You will eventually strike the blood supply to the nail when you trim your pet’s nails. Trim enough nails and you will have at least one bleed occasionally. This styptic powder will allow you to stop any bleeding that may occur. We have Kwik-Stop available for sale.
Veterinary staff or a groomer can often trim the nails of pets who struggle, try to bite, or otherwise will not tolerate nail trimming at home.
Although nails tend to grow slowly, we recommend trimming your pet’s nails every week. The longer the nails are allowed to get, the harder it is to trim them back to a normal length without causing excessive stress to your pet or bleeding of the nail. Your pet will get used to having their nails trimmed much more easily if you do it often.
Normally, your dog’s nail should be cut level with an imaginary line drawn across the bottom of the pad. With white nails you can often see the blood supply to the nail (the ‘quick’) and then make your cut accordingly. With black nails, it is best to trim the nail back 1/8″ at a time until the nail seems to be softer (near the ‘quick’).
If you do cut into the ‘quick’ and it bleeds, put some styptic powder on the bleeding area and apply direct pressure for a minute or two. The cut ‘quick’ can bleed a great deal, but in most cases, the nail will not bleed enough to be dangerous.