Regular grooming helps keep your dog healthy and in top condition. Along with dental care, the occasional bath, coat trimming and brushing, dog nail clipping is an important part of pet grooming. The many benefits provided include a longer life for your pet and a sense of well-being. While many top dog groomers are available in London, owners who are willing to nail clip their own dogs should understand the basics and apply the correct technique.
If your dog’s claws remain unclipped they will curl in. This kind of unnecessary pressure on the toes means that your dog may walk uncomfortably, while the nail can sometimes dig into the paw pad, causing pain and infection. Monthly trimming helps to avoid this and ensures the quick, or the part of the nail where nerves and blood vessels join the claw, does not grow with the nail until it can’t be clipped correctly.
The two main kinds of trimming implements are the guillotine type, which works by placing the nail to be trimmed through a ring and then squeezing the handles to move the blade up through it, and the scissors type, which is standard and best used for nails that are curved. Simply place it at right angles to the nail, in the same way that you would use a pair of scissors. View our scissors type nail clipper here.
The nail should be cut at a distance of about 2 mm away from the quick. The quick is generally more visible on lighter colored nails, and so are easier to cut. Nail color may differ from one nail to the next, and each nail tends to be the same color as the skin and hair around it.
If the quick is not visible, make many small cuts beginning from the end of the claw. Keep cutting until a gray or pink oval is seen on the surface of the cut nail. The front claws will need more trimming than the rear ones because of their greater length. A final touch is to file the cut surface until smooth. Remember to only use sharp clippers to ensure a clean cut.
Make sure the blade is facing you, not your dog. This way, you are less likely to cut into the quick. If it is cut it will cause pain and bleed, but if this does happen, even without any treatment it should stop bleeding within five minutes.
Dew claws can get quite long and dig into the toe pad. They are non functional claws that can be found on the inner area of the paw, attached by loose skin. These claws can be trimmed using a guillotine style clipper as they are attached flexibly and so are easily moved to the desired position. Also trim any dew claws found on the inner surface of the paw.
Clipping your pet’s nails can only increase confidence and skill the more you do it. However, if you would rather someone with more experience do this job for you, pop in to one of Pet Pavilion’s grooming salons to help keep your dog in great condition. Make a booking here.