Taking Care of Your Dogs Nails

Jasmine here from the Barking Beauty Boutique, one of the questions I regularly hear is ‘how do I clip my dog’s nails’ so I’m starting my blog with an article on keeping your dog’s nails in trim.

If you’re in any doubt about anything talked about here you should seek advice from a qualified pet professional.

There are several important things to know about clipping your pets nails:IMAG0666

  • At home when clipping a pets nails, ensure your pet is comfortable with you doing this and not too worried, the experience should be calm and relaxed.
  • Nails should be clipped approximately once every four weeks.
  • You must ensure that the nails are clipped below the pink vein or quick.
  • Clear nails are always easier to clip as the quick is more visible, dark nails are more difficult as obviously identifying where the quick is can take more experience so if in doubt seek advice. Another tip with darker nails is to trim them slightly but more regularly so as to avoid a more drastic cut closer to the quick.

There are various types of cutting/clipping equipment or tools:

  • Scissor cutters – these are much like specialized scissors usually best used for smaller breeds of dog, as they tend to be more for delicate tasks.
  • Plier clippers – these come in different sizes best used for larger breeds or pets with thicker nails.
  • Guillotine clippers – good for use with pets who have thin nails, should not be used for twisted or thicker nails.
  • Nail Grinders – these are good for quickly shortening nails but they do take some getting used to for your pet and yourself as they do require a level of practice and experience and as for your pet, these can be distressing due to the noise and vibration caused.


In addition it is advisable (as well as seeking advice before your first attempt to clip your pets nails) to visit your groomer to observe a clipping, and on attempting a clipping have some coagulant on hand in case of an accident in nipping the quick.


Lastly some dogs also have a dew claw and sometimes clipping or cutting this can be tricky due to its shape and location. The same principle applies though, cut below the quick and if in any doubt seek advice from your groomer.

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