Many of our clients choose to trim their dog’s nails at home; however, this can be a dangerous endeavor if you’re not comfortable with cutting them. When clipping your dog’s claws, it’s important that you only cut off the tip because cutting past the quick (which has live blood vessels) can cause severe bleeding and pain for your pup. Although this bleeding should not be life-threatening, it can persist for quite some time (think about how long it lasts when you cut one of your fingers), meaning that it can get on furniture, clothes, carpets, etc.
If your dog is bleeding and/or in pain, please call the veterinarian professionals at Germantown Vet by dialing 240-252-7467240-252-7467.
What to Do If You Cut Their Nails Too Short
The best thing you can do when you’ve cut your dog’s nails too short is to apply clotting powder. This clotting powder can be purchased at most pet stores. Feel free to contact us for recommendations about the current brands that are available.
If the clotting powder doesn’t work or your dog still appears to be in pain, please visit us immediately for veterinary care.
How to Properly Cut Your Dog’s Nails
Although accidents can happen, it’s important to know how to properly trim your dog’s nails in order to avoid any issues in the future. Your dog’s nails should be cut on a regular basis—we generally recommend cutting them any time you start hearing them click on the floor when your pet walks on hard surfaces. The nails should not protrude past the pad of the foot. This can take 3 – 8 weeks, depending on different factors. Note: Keep clotting powder on hand if you are going to attempt trimming your pet’s nails at home.
Before you embark on the actual cutting of your dog’s nails, make sure your pet is comfortable. Ideally, you should get your pup used to having his or her paws touched at an early age, including nail trimming. This can greatly reduce stress in the future and make cutting the nails a lot easier. If your dog is anxious or pulling against you when you’re holding his or her paw, this can result in a painful injury—for you or your pet. We recommend providing tasty treats to help your dog associate nail-trimming with something pleasant.
Once you’ve gotten your dog comfortable with the idea of getting his or her paws touched, inspect the nails. You should be able to visibly identify the quick—in white or clear nails, you will see a pinkish cluster where the live veins are. In black or brown nails, it can be more difficult. However when inspecting the underside of the nail, you should be able to see the difference between the tip of the nail and the quick. Make quick, clean cuts as you go. If your dog seems upset, let him or her take a break and come back to the trimming later in the day.
When to Get Professional Help
If your dog is too distressed to clip his or her nails at home or you are uncomfortable with performing this task, the experts at Germantown Vet are happy to help. Simply give us a call to schedule an appointment—we can also trim your pup’s nails during a routine check-up! Just ask us for details.