Wednesday, August 12, 2009
CUTTING DOG NAILS
Dogs are often reluctant to have their nails clipped, therefore, starting the process at a very young age is a good idea.
Initially, get your dog accustomed to you simply holding and stroking their paws. Then progress to applying light pressure on their paws and nails - lightly pinching their nails between your finger and thumb. Reward them for allowing this.
Then, after a lesson from your vets in how to cut a dog's nails, lightly trim a couple of nails a day. Just trim off the tips - this lessens the chances of you cutting too deep and frightening your dog off.
Talk to your dog in a soothing voice all the time and reward him with his favorite treat and a romp straight after. He will gradually grow accustomed to this unpleasant procedure and learn to at least put up with it.
You can choose a nail clipping tool that you feel most comfortable with. There are many types on the market and they all equal. Just make sure you get a nice sharp pair. Some people use the new tools on the market that grind the nail. I find for my Shih Tzu the simple old variety clippers work best.
It is also advisable to keep a styptic pen or Quick stop powder handy just in case you clip into your dog's quick.
Anatomy Of A Dog's Nail
Knowing how to cut dog's nails is easier when you know the anatomy of a dog's nail.
A dog's nail is constructed of a hard outer cover, which protects the quick which is the inner soft part containing blood vessels and tender nerve endings. In dogs with light coloured nails, the quick can often been seen as being faintly pinkish in color and is thus easy to avoid cutting into.
In the more common black nailed variety, the quick it totally invisible. Therefore, knowing exactly how to cut a dog's nails in this case is imperative. In these cases, trimming off a small amount at a time is more advisable. Sometimes you can look at the bottom of the nail and get a good idea of where the quick starts.
Keep checking the clipped part of your dog's nail and look out for a dark spot in the middle of the newly clipped area - this shows the start of the quick. Taking small amounts at a time will enable you to know whn you are getting close or let you know you can take just a little more.
Also, don't forget your dog's dew claws. Growing on the inside of his legs. To learn more abou thow to groom and keep yoru dog healthy go to www.shihtzukisses.com