Everything You Need to Know About Trimming Your Anxious Dog's Nails – Mushy Beds

Everything You Need to Know About Trimming Your Anxious Dog's Nails

Everything You Need to Know About Trimming Your Anxious Dog's Nails

There's that sound—that click-clack your pooch makes as he walks and his long nails hit your hardwood floor. It's time to trim his nails. However, it could prove to be a difficult task for your anxious dog. Yet trimming his nails is a critical part of his grooming regimen.

The Importance of Nail Trimming

Your dog's nails grow in a curve and there are two sections to the nail: the outer shell and the pink quick. The quick goes to the nail's core and is the nail's blood supplier. If you accidentally trim the quick it will bleed and cause your dog pain; as you develop a routine nail trimming, the quick will become shorter and retreat from the nail's end. This will make the task easier for you and better for your beloved canine.

But trimming nails isn't just about keeping them looking nice. If you don't trim his claws, they'll soon be growing into the underside of his paws; thus digging into his skin, making it painful for him to walk and possibly creating decreased traction. To ease his pain he might walk more on his hind feet which causes poor posture. Your pup could also endure dangerous issues like:

  • Achy joints and muscles
  • Toe inflammation or deformity
  • Backaches
  • Tendon injuries
  • Arthritis
  • Decreased mobility

Likewise, long claws will pull on fabric or carpet. As your fur baby tries to free his paw, the nail enamel could wear off, exposing the quick; an exposed quick can cause infections or injuries.

Helping Your Anxious Dog Relax

Many pooches don't like having their nails trimmed because a dog's paws and nails are extremely sensitive. They can become anxious with trimming if they've had just one bad ordeal, like having the quick clipped. If this is your furry pal, don't worry, there are ways to help your anxious dog stay calm during the trimming process.

First, never forget these two things:

  • Always be gentle and patient.
  • Always have a good attitude and never scold him.

If you have a puppy, you know how inquisitive he is! Yet even some puppies are nervous with first-time experiences.

  1. Begin by allowing him to sniff the nail clippers and gently hold his feet as you pat him.
  2. Once he's used to you handling his paws, softly touch his paws with the clippers and open and close them so your fur baby will hear the sound they make. Give him plenty of praise if he doesn't back away and let him enjoy a few delicious treats.
  3. After he's comfortable with this, try clipping off a teeny bit of one nail on a front paw (directions are below); if you're able to clip the nail, shower him with praise and treats.
  4. Repeat this last step each day, clipping two nails a day if he'll let you until you've gotten all the nails clipped and your pup is completely comfortable with the process. Don't push it though—if he resists, stop and continue practicing when he relaxes again.

But What if You Have an Older Dog That Is Fearful of Getting His Nails Trimmed?

Well, helping your anxious dog to remain calm during nail trimming will take a lot more patience and more of your time every day but you can eventually teach him to relax during this grooming routine. Just remember: shower him with praise and treats, be gentle and positive, and don't rush things—this will be a challenging time for both of you.

Dog's nails usually need to be clipped about every 3 weeks; however, it depends on how active the dog is. So be sure to practice in between nail clippings by pretending you are trimming his nails. This will let your dog become used to the entire process and be more relaxed when it's time to clip his nails.

Trimming His Nails

Once your furry friend is comfortable and doesn't freak out at the sight of nail clippers or having his paws touched, you're ready to trim all his nails in one sitting.

  1. Pick up your pooch's paw. Gently, but firmly, put your forefinger on top of the skin above a toenail and your thumb on the pad of the same toe. Check that all of your puppy's fur is out of the way.
  2. Now push your forefinger forward and, at the same time, push your thumb up a bit and back on his pad. You should now have an extended nail.
  3. Clip his nail crosswise—but only the tip! Don't forget to trim the dewclaws on the inner side of the paws.
  4. Don't trim past the curve of his nail or you could end up trimming the pink quick. If your fur baby has dark-colored nails, the quick will be white.

It's a good idea to keep some clotting powder on hand, just in case.

It'll take lots of dedication, regularity, and patience on your part, but your cherished dog will ultimately tolerate nail trimming and maybe even learn to like the routine.

The ultimate reward for being such a good boy during nail trimming would be one of our cuddly, fluffy beds or blankets. Check out our products today!