Whoever designed a dog toenail did a lousy job. I don’t hear people complain too much about cutting theirs too short, but if you cut a dog toenail to short, it bleeds… a lot… and it doesn’t stop.
If you’re lucky, the dog will have the color of nail that lets you see where the “quick” starts. If you’re not so lucky, you have to guess. In that case the best you can do is to only take off a little at a time and hope for the best.
There are a lot of dog toenail clippers, and here is an example.
One time when we were clipping my nails with regular dog toenail clippers (like above), I got impatient… and restless. That made the boss crabby and she ended up rushing through it and clipping my toenail too short.
Did I mention that if you cut a dog toenail too short bad things happen?
The results… you guessed it… blood… on tan carpet… in the living room… and the dining room… and the kitchen… and the couch… and the bedroom.
Unfortunately, that’s not an exaggeration. They sell stuff that will stop the toenail from bleeding, but you have to get the toenail into the powder for it to work… and I’m not likely to make that easy for you after you just hurt me by clipping my toenail too short.
The next time it got cut too short had a much better result. We were following the grooming time procedures so I was busy chewing the rawhide when it got cut.
The nail was clipped too short and the boss saw blood. Fortunately, I was distracted and she was able to put pressure on it so that it stopped bleeding before I really knew anything was wrong.
The Answer – Pedi-Paws
There are a lot of options to use to clip a dog’s toenail, but Pedi-Paws is our favorite. It has an added bonus of being better than normal clippers on toenails that are too dark to see the quick (i.e. blood). The sandpaper on the grinder only takes off a little at a time so it prevents “big” disasters.
I know… I was skeptical too. Yes, this is the thing you’ve seen on tv that looks great but realistically seems like it would be impossible to train your dog to use.
Sure, seeing the ads on tv made this look like a great answer, but come on… you had to be crazy to think that your dog would actually sit still for this, right?
Despite our apprehension, we bought one anyway. (Did I mention that the boss is really lazy and would buy anything if it looked like it would save me time/trouble?)
We were shocked to find out that it actually works. You have to proceed very, very slowly. The vibration of the grinder against the dog toenail is pretty scary at first.
Do it every day when you start. (maybe even a couple times per day) It will only take 60 seconds while you are introducing it to the dog.
Proceed very, very, very slowly.
Make each session short enough so the dog can be successful. For the first few days, all we did was hold my paw, touch one toenail with the grinder. Then we were done and I got a treat. Eventually the boss would hold each toenail for a few seconds longer.
When I got comfortable with the one toe, then we did all toenails on one paw then eventually lengthened the time the grinder touched the toenail.
Did I mention you have to go really, really go slow with this. That grinder thing is scary, but with a little bit of patience, well… a lot of patience, this works great.
Other Things To Know
Grooming is a great way to get kids involved. When our 77 year old niece comes over (wait… I guess you’re used to human years… that makes her 11) she holds us to make it easier for the boss.
You can find 74 billion products for groom a dog here.