Pet Nails

Oh no nail grooming time

Nervous pets and grooming time!

Dogs struggling, crying, whining and hiding …same story every single time the nail clippers come out!  Whether it’s trimming nails or just trying to brush your nervous pet – no matter how experienced you are or how much effort you put into keeping your pet calm, there is something you have to know: They don’t like to be groomed.

Here, some tips and tools for general grooming and for getting the nails of your pet done without experiencing a traumatizing situation for both of you.


  1. Keep yourself calm. If you are anxious your pet will certainly pick up on it.  Create a relaxed environment by putting on your favorite CD and begin by getting your pet comfortable with you stroking them.
  2. Leave the worst to the end. If your pet enjoys being brushed but hates having their claws clipped, always leave their nails to the end.  Begin by brushing them so they enjoy the session and start to relax before you attempt to even touch their paws.
  3. A little bribery never hurts! Many pets are very food-motivated so use this to tempt and reward them.  Also praise with an encouraging and reassuring tone of voice.  Do a little at a time with each small step offering a reward.Cat filing nails


Dogs need their nails clipped and filed on a regular basis, usually every 3 to 4 weeks. Overdue nails raise health issues. Extended growth can result in painful ingrown nails.  Some dogs will find it difficult to place their full body weight on their feet with discomfort from elongated nails. As a result these dogs develop sore feet, legs and hips and overall discomfort. Just to walk can then be a painful experience for them.
Nail clipping is essentially the process of cutting away excess nail, and the key is to learn just what the “excess nail” is. If you can hear dog nails when walk on a hard floor surface, there is probably a small or better amount of excess nail to clip and/or file down always taking care of not cutting through the “quick”.

THE QUICKWhere to clip dog nails and quick

There is a blood vessel in pet dog and cat nails, commonly referred to as “the quick” and usually visible to the eye except for dark-coloured nails. Because it is possible to cut the quick and cause a nail to bleed, many pet owners are fearful of cutting their pet’s nails.
If the quick is already very near nail tips, daily filing for approximately three weeks may encourage nail quick to recede enough for a comfortable, bloodless nail clipping.
The nails should be clipped and filed on a regular basis in order to maintain their healthy state, and prevent the pet from having to undergo bleeding nails. There is almost no risk of causing the nails to bleed when filing them.

But cutting your pet’s nails can be a daunting task. Learning how to hold and handle the dog, and properly use the correct tools, makes nail clipping and filing a much more bearable procedure for dogs. Most nail clipping procedures cause no pain to the dogs.


  • Guillotine-type nails clippers for medium to large dogs, as an option you can use
  • Large scissor-type nails clippers for small dogs or cats
  • Or Dremel-Type nail trimmer Peticure or PediPaws: great for dogs with black or dark colour nails
  • Commercial coagulant to stop nail bleeding if happens
  • Glass nail files for smooth finish after clipping
  • Nail polish for dogs or “nail caps”


  1. Place your left arm around the dog’s middle body and hold it against your chest. Talk softly and kindly to ease the dog’s anxiety about the clipping procedure.
  2. In your left hand hold the dog’s foot with your thumb on top of the toe, and two or more fingers below along the pad of the foot.
  3. Insert the nail into the clipper, and clip below the quick at a 45 degree angle. Be sure to also clip dew claws, About 1″ to 3″ above the inside of their front feet (and sometimes rear fee) dogs may have “5th nails” commonly referred to “dew claws.” On dogs with black nails you may want to make several small clips instead of clipping “a chunk off.” You will usually be able to spot the “quick” as a dark spot in the center of the nail when looking at it head on. This is the quick you want to avoid cutting.
  4. If you cut the quick you must stop the bleeding. In most cases, a coagulant product is sufficient. Apply the powder to the tip of the quick where it was cut, and hold with moderate pressure. The bleeding often stops very quickly. Wipe away excess powder and re-check the “seal” often. Remember, it is possible that the powder seal may be washed or scratched off until the “seal” has had adequate time to dry. If you leave too much excess powder it hardens into a “cap” on the nail tip that can be broken off and entirely remove the seal. Therefore, be sure to remove excess powder only.
  5. File each nail with a nail file, so that the tip is soft and without rough broken edges. Pet owners appreciate this added touch, and it saves women’s stockings! Glass nail files clean up the nails free of burrs without the risk of cutting into live tissue and don’t stress your pet. It is recommended to file nails in one direction only. It should be washed after use and disinfected with the customary disinfectant or be sterilized.Remember:– Filing nails that bled may remove the coagulant styptic powder “seal” and resume bleeding. Do not file the seal away.– For scared animals try to avoid electric grinders and files.
  6. If a dew claw has grown into a circular loop, you can cut into the mid-section of the nail with scissor-type cutter before the quick. Afterwards, use the regular nail clippers to finish cutting but again avoiding the quick.
  7. One nails are clipped and filed and for an extra special touch, finish with a coat of quick-drying pet nail polish, available at most pet stores, at pet boutiques and online. We do not recommend using nail polish for humans. Instead there are epoxy enamel polishes for dogs available from grooming suppliers. Good dog nail polish is very durable.

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