Dogs need their nails trimmed every week. Making this a routine will ensure proper nail length is maintained and that paws and pads are checked for cuts or injury.
Nail length changes the dogs posture. Long term neglect of the nails will result in orthopedic damage and arthritis in the paws and legs. All dogs should have a tight, round and high arched toes. Toes that are splayed, curved or slanted are the result of nails too long.
Trim your dog’s nails with him standing upright next to a wall. Small dogs may be accustomed to stand on a raised table. For the best lighting, trim during the day, near a window or outside. Use a flat buckle collar or helper to secure him and have plenty of treats on ready. When staring, give a treat for each nail clipped. Take breaks, such as a few minutes between each of the four paws.
JW Grip Soft Medium nail clippers are great for most sized dogs. They are small enough that you can see what you are doing yet strong enough for big nails. This style trimmer gives you the best precision in making the trims and does not squeeze the dog’s nail or make any sound. Replace every year to maintain a sharp blade. The nail is trimmed in 3 cuts. First the top, then each side. Trim in 1/16” to 1/8” increments. With the dog standing, lift one paw at the wrist, and hold firmly but not tightly under the dog with the pads facing up. Leaning your arm or body into the dog helps him balance and feel secure.
Katie Weibel, Master Dog Trainer. Providing training for companion, service and working dogs, sharing knowledge and expertise.