Take the Stress Out of Trimming Your Dog’s Toe Nails

April is a month for knowledge and one of the biggest challenges for new students as well as pet parents is to understand your pets Toe Nails. Nothing makes owners and students cringe more than clipping 16 to 24 nails on a pet that is less than happy about it!

All dogs’ nails grow at different rates. Their nail length can depend on their activity level, but also their breed, age, whether they’re most active on hard or soft surfaces and their overall health. It’s important to check their nail length periodically because long nails can actually affect their ability to walk normally. When a dog’s nails get too long, it can make their toes turn to one side, causing joint discomfort and, in severe cases, joint abnormalities and arthritis.

Once a dog’s nails are too long, it’s not always easy to know exactly where to trim them. Some dogs have dark or even black nails and it can be hard to see where the quick (the nail bed) is. If this is the case with your dog,  you may wish to have your vet or a professional groomer do the job. You can also try using an electric filing tool that will quickly trim back your pal’s nails without concern of cutting into the quick, causing pain and bleeding.

The same is true for dogs who are anxious about having their paws touched and/or nails cut, especially if they’re already older and you weren’t able to get them comfortable with nail trims as puppies.

As a student, The American Grooming Academy takes time to show a future pet stylist the correct manner to professionally complete toenails on all types of clients pets! This process is one of the hardest things for new students to learn. Taking the time to make a pet comfortable about its toenail may take more than one trip to the same pet stylist. Our students learn to effectively communicate with the pet. They also learn correct holds that are comfortable as well as effective in making the trip to the pet stylist positive.

When the inevitable happens, AGA students know the correct procedure for caring for any accidents. Even experienced and cautious pet stylist have accidentally cut the quick and faced dog nail bleeding.  It’s easy to mistakenly cut a dog’s nails too short, particularly if the nails are black or dark in color. Dogs with white or light nails often have a visible quick, making it quite obvious where to avoid clipping. Practice makes perfect and the students at AGA get 480 hours of practice! This makes AGA students more than prepared for a lifelong career as a pet stylist who cares for your pet!

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