Nail clipping ..how often? Tips for Dremel?

Good grooming practices are essential for maintaining health and happiness for you and your dog. This is a forum to exchange tips and advice for proper care of your dog's hygiene needs.

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Full of Beans!
Barked: Sun Apr 7, '13 6:10pm PST 
How often should we cut nails? We have been taking coco monthly for nail trims and we are out of town and took her too a groomers , of course they hit her quick ( clear nails even!) . She is so terrified that we decided to get a Dremell tool. So far with lots of treats (bacon) she has let us do two nails for a few seconds.

Question is... The instructions say that the nails should never get to the point of touching the ground! Hers do! Always have! Any tips or advice on this....? Are her nails too long. How often do you trim?

Edited by author Sun Apr 7, '13 6:12pm PST


I'm triple- superior MAD- now!
Barked: Sun Apr 7, '13 10:34pm PST 
When nails are too long I touch them briefly daily to shorten them up. I just dremel the tips so the ends of the nail look square and the softer under parts wear down so next day I can square off the tips again. I like the photos on this page to show what dog nails look like.

Sassy's nails always touched the floor and Max's nails only do so when they are long. Some of this depends on the shape of the dog's feet.

And last, here is where DoberDawn's wonderful page on using a Dremel tool is.
Ava & Nix

Suburban Farm- Dogs
Barked: Mon Apr 8, '13 7:56am PST 
Even in white nails the quick can sometimes be longer than it appears to be. I've accidentally quicked dogs from just taking the white part off the nail before, being nowhere near the pink, but that vein can fool ya sometimes.. There's not much to be said about carelessness... even the most experienced groomer has quicked more than a few dogs in their career. It's unfortunate, but it happens sometimes.

That said, I trim Ava and Nix's nails about every 2 to 3 weeks or so, whenever the tip of their nail grows sharp. I just take the very tip off. I use a trimmer since they've never really gotten used to the dremel, but it's really personal preference and what your dog tolerates. Theirs click on the ground when they walk, but they don't touch when they're just standing still. smile

If you use the dremel consistently every 2 weeks to get the nail as short as possible the quick should eventually start to retract, but some dogs just seem to naturally have longer quicks than others. Her nails look like they're a good length in her photo, so I'd just work at maintaining that length by dremeling only once a month or so, depending how fast they grow. smile


I'm triple- superior MAD- now!
Barked: Mon Apr 8, '13 9:02am PST 
No kidding about the quick being tricky! One of Max's dew claws has a quick that grows to one side. He broke a nail one time, the quick looks like the tip of a tiny finger and is very tender. Quicks do not recede as far as I can tell, I had Max's nails clipped back short to let that quick grow back inside the nail and I couldn't trim it any shorter than before.

If the toe gets bent one way or the other then that nail is far too long, the nails not touching the ground is more a show dog thing. Dogs need to be able to use those claws when they are running. Sassy even wore her dew claws down enough running I didn't usually have to dremel them. She was quite offended when I had to start doing them as she wasn't running enough in her old age.
Ava & Nix

Suburban Farm- Dogs
Barked: Mon Apr 8, '13 12:06pm PST 
It will, but it can take a very long time and you basically have to make sure to keep the nails as close as possible -all the time- which is why you have to dremel so often (once a week to every two weeks depending how fast the dog's nails grow) when you're trying to get the quicks to recede. smile

Edited by author Mon Apr 8, '13 12:06pm PST


Barked: Mon Apr 8, '13 1:47pm PST 
...Never! We've never been able to clip Natcho's nails. When she was a puppy my dad cut her nail a little too short and it bled.
When she was 2 we tried to get her nails clipped at a petstore...the lady gave her back to her us because after 2 hours she just couldn't do it.
Natcho isn't aggressive at all, she just uses her weight to get away LOL.
So once in awhile Natcho trims her own nails by nibbling on them. Or just walking her files them down too.

Herpaderp-apotam- us
Barked: Mon Apr 8, '13 4:02pm PST 
When people bring me dogs with long nails with long quicks, I tell them to bring them in every week. If you're doing it at home, I agree with every day. Even if it's just to take the tip off, you're going to help push the quick back towards the base of the toe.

Personally, I do Noah's nails a couple times a month. But he's also run on pavement pretty regularly.

I love sitting- in laps
Barked: Mon Apr 8, '13 11:18pm PST 
With Moose I clip just slivers off of his nails every week, although I'm a week overdo as of right now.
I'm paranoid of hitting Moose's quick, even though he's got white nails, and the Dremel doesn't work on his huge, thick nails so I just basically shave off enough to keep them from clicking super loud on the floor.

What I've found to really grind down his nails, especially the outside nails, is when he gets the zoomies on a really hard surface. Every time he makes a sharp turn to zoomie, he grinds down his nails to the point that they barely click on the floor. It's awesome.

Im just a little- guy
Barked: Tue Apr 9, '13 11:00am PST 
It depends on the dog. If you frequently walk your dog on asphalt and concrete sidewalks, the nails are going to wear down more. I seldom have to clip my dog's nails.

I never used a dremel, but my dog does not like nail clippings. If he struggles and gets stressed, I let him go. I let him calm down before I continue. I think restraining and forcing a dog is part of the reason why so many hate nail clippings. I understand why many groomers have to do this, but at home you can take your time.

The last time I clipped a nail and he flipped. I let him go and waited till he calmed down. I was able to get the rest of the nails in one sitting. When he tries to pull his feet away, I let him while holding the paw. I clip the nails when he relaxes. In the past I would take a long time to do this, but he has gotten a lot better.

Being calm when doing this helps a lot.

Member Since
Barked: Sun Apr 14, '13 6:19pm PST 
If a dog is active, his front nails will grow faster than his rear nails as he will be pushing off from his rear. From what I know, dogs should actually get a regular nail clipping. It is suggested that owners cut the dog's nails if it happens to grow past his pad. You'll know when that happens because you will hear sound when they walk.

Clipping his nails at least twice a week would help keep your dog's nails shorter. But if you're looking to keep the quick short, give him a weekly clip. My dogs get their nail clips twice a week and I'm proud to say they're about used to having their nails 'done'. laugh out loud
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