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Pet Nail Care

August 07, 2008  |  Difficulty: Easy

Trimming toenails can be tricky…sometimes it’s a job better left to professionals!

Most pets, not all, do have an aversion to getting their toenails trimmed.  They will let you know that they are uncomfortable by whining, squirming, scratching or worse by biting and growling…even with cats!   If that happens your best bet is the pet groomer who is a professional at this.  Plus, it’s very inexpensive to have this done regularly (about $5) and healthier for the animals.  

Here are the main reasons why pet nail care is important:
  • Long nails can get snagged and pulled painfully in many situations.
  • Long nails can scratch and hurt their owners.
  • Long “dewclaws” found on the back of all four legs can become in-grown and causing a serious very painful infection. Both dogs and cats have these so be on the lookout.
  • Long nails make walking and running uncomfortable as they press and put pressure on the nail bed.
  • Long claws can scratch and ruin furniture, rugs and drapes.
Try these tips to make nail care easier on you and your pet:
  • If you hear nails scratching on the floors then it’s time for a trim!
  • Use only nail trimmers designed for your type of pet.  Never use plain scissors.
  • Start young – when your pet is a baby-- so he will be desensitized to this procedure.
  • Regularly massage and inspect your pet’s feet so he will be used to having his feet handled.
  • Make sure the environment is peaceful and not chaotic.  Do this when your dog or cat is relaxed, not when he wants to play
  • Watch out for the “quick.”   This is the part of the nail where it attached to the toes.  It is pink and if you clip it, the bleeding is profuse and painful for your pet.  
  • Be sure you have a clotting agent or styptic pencil handy before you start, just in case you do clip the quick.
  • Always trim conservatively at the curved tips
  • If you have any fears or your animal simply will not cooperate, leave it to the professionals.

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