Care Tips

How to trim a dog’s nails

Escrito por Mundocachorro

Trimming a dog’s nails is a process that is part of a dog’s hygiene routine. However, it is an activity that must be performed with special care, so here we explain how to cut a dog’s nails correctly.

Preliminary considerations

Before cutting a dog’s nails, it is necessary to know the inside of the nail, since the nail contains two blood vessels and a nerve.

If the cut of the nail goes beyond the limits allowed by this nerve, the dog will present bleeding and great pain, due to the cut of the nerve.

Knowing the above, we understand that a dog’s nails should be cut with special care, the cut should always be superficial and only the tip of the nail should be cut.

Dogs normally file their own nails when walking on rough surfaces, so if you take your dog for walks on an ongoing basis, frequent nail trimming may not be necessary.

However, you should check the pet’s internal nails that do not have contact with the ground, as these should be trimmed.

How to trim a dog’s nails step by step

  1. First of all, you must choose the instrument to be used for nail cutting, this can be: a pair of scissors or a guillotine style cutter. It is best to use the guillotine style trimmer, as it offers greater precision, especially if you are just starting to trim your pet’s nails.
  2. After choosing the nail cutter, practice a little bit how to use it. It is advisable to read the instructions supplied with each instrument.
  3. Next, approach your pet, touch the nails with the clipper but do not make the cut, just bring the instrument close to the nails.
  4. Then, leave the clipper near your pet’s nails to familiarize him/her with the instrument, make the moment more enjoyable by giving your pet some dog-friendly treats. Follow this process until you notice that your dog is comfortable with the presence of the nail clippers.
  5. Once the pet is already confident, you must take the paw corresponding to the nails to be cut gently, repeat this process several times.
  6. Finally, hold firmly the leg corresponding to the nails to be cut without exerting too much pressure, place the cutter on the tip of the nail keeping the distance indicated above so as not to touch the nerve, use the cutting tool quickly and continue the process on each nail.

Remember to always check your dog’s nails, because if they are too long, he can hurt himself or any person who cohabits with him. In addition, with short nails, the dog can move with greater agility and ease.

Image courtesy of vetmed (, all rights reserved.