Why You Should Trim Your Dog's Nails

Trimming your dog’s nails is an important part of your grooming routine that helps them stay happy and healthy. When you don’t clip your dog’s nails, they can end up growing too long, which can cause problems. Find out more about why you should make sure your dog’s nails are well-trimmed at all times.

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Reasons to Trim Dog Nails

Dogs that run around on concrete, pavements or other hard surfaces often are able to wear down their nails naturally. However, many dogs either spend most of their time indoors or running around on grassy surfaces. This means that their nail tips aren’t worn down regularly, which can lead to overly long nails. 

Claws that are too long are at risk of being torn off, such as if your dog’s nail gets caught on a piece of carpet or furniture. This can result in an injury that might require a visit to the vet if it’s serious enough. Longer dog nails also make it harder for dogs to walk around comfortably. When your dog’s nails hit the floor constantly as they walk, this can put more pressure on the nail bed. This in turn can cause discomfort that forces your dog to distribute their weight differently while she walks, which can affect the way her toe and paw joints are aligned.

Trimming Tips

If your dog isn’t used to having her nails trimmed, you might need to work on ensuring that she feels comfortable with this task. You can do this by gradually introducing her to the clippers and getting her used to having her paws handled. Form positive associations with this by rewarding her with treats and praise until she allows you to clip her nails without getting nervous.

Unfortunately, many dogs don’t like the jarring effect of clippers which is why Wiser Pet have developed a grinding tool as part of their multi-purpose grooming kit. This method is often less stressful for dogs as the grinding wheel gradually buffs and rubs away longer nails. Read more about the Wiser Pet Grooming Kit here.

If you are using clippers, hold them at a 45-degree angle. Be careful so that you don’t accidentally cut into the quick, which is the live part of the nail. This means stopping before you reach the pink part if your dog has white nails. For black nails, stop clipping when you no longer see a whitish interior.

How often should you trim your dog’s nails?

Ideally, you should aim to file them when they are long enough to reach the floor. You can visually check your dog’s nail to determine this, or listen for the sound of her nail tips hitting the floor as she walks. 

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