06 Jan Nails – December 2022
Although the amount differs, some dogs have 16 of these…some have 18…some 20…. some even have 22 but all dogs have them. The clicky clacky, hardwood gauging, couch destroying…. nails. No matter the breed or the size they all have them, and they all use them. So, what do we do about this and how do keep up with them.
Let’s first talk about the dynamics of nails. Every dog has at least 4 on each foot. Some have dew claws, which are those nails that are slightly higher up on the leg, and they can be on the front and back legs. Dew claws on the back legs are much less common and unless breed specific like the Great Pyranese, which has 2 dew claws on the back leg, most breeders remove them at a young age. Sometimes the front ones are removed as well, it tends to be breeder preference. Nails can either be solid black or more like ours so a white/clear. White nails are easier to trim for most people because they can see the vein, known as the quick, inside them.
It’s extremely important to stay on top of your dog’s nail care. So many aspects of your dog’s life can be affected by overgrown nails. If nails get too long, they can display toes and make walking very painful and difficult. Often on smaller dogs if the nails are left unattended, they will curl back into
the pad and can grow into the dog’s foot causing a nasty infection. The other issue with not cutting nails consistently is the quick will often grow out with the uncut nail. This makes it more difficult to cut them short because if you hit the quick the nail will bleed and though it’s not the end of the world it’s not comfortable for the Pup when it happens. Quick stop, which is used by groomers for when this happens has benzocaine in it, which is a mild pain reliever. When quicks grow out into the nail then you must bring the Pup every 2 weeks to have the nail cut so that the quick will start to recede. It’s a long process but necessary.
Best preventative measure is to start as young as possible with nail trims and be consistent with them. This will get your Pup used to it from a young age and make it easier on them as well as the groomer. Your Pup should be getting their nails trimmed roughly every 4 to 6 weeks. Of course, it varies, and some Pups can go longer because they walk on pavement a lot and wear the nails down naturally or it could need to be more often because the Pup doesn’t walk on many rough surfaces or maybe just not much at all. Think of all the Pups that spend most of their time in someone’s arms.
Although you can learn how to clip your Pups nails on your own, the easiest way to get the job done is to run to the groomers. Almost all groomers accept walk in nail trims costing $10 to $20 and taking about 10 minutes. You can also ask to have the nails filed to make sure they’re no pointy edges to scratch you or the floor. This will also help make the nail trim last a little bit longer. Your Pups feet are what hold them up and let them run. They need to be in the best shape possible to give them the best active life they can have.