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The best in health, wellness, and positive training from America’s leading dog experts

Home Care Nail Clipping

Nail Clipping

Grinders vs. Clippers: What’s Best for your Dog’s Nails?

Maybe it’s the telltale click-clack as your dog moseys across the kitchen floor. Or the unmistakable and often painful raking sensation when she jumps...
Dog toenails

Common Toenail Injuries on Dogs

Nails: All dogs have them. In fact some dog breeds, like the Great Pyrenees, have 22 of them. Yet nails are commonly ignored by many dog owners. There are numerous common problems with this area in dogs, ranging from minor broken nails to more devastating diseases like cancer. Proper maintenance with nails trims and periodic inspection of the nail and nail fold will ensure early detection of any problems with your canine friend.

The 3 Most Common and Preventable Canine Maladies

What is the worst part about these strikingly common conditions dogs get? They are all entirely preventable. Obesity, periodontitis, and overgrown nails affect more dogs in the United States than any other diseases, and can be just as harmful.

The Importance of Trimming Dog Nails

Let's get this out of the way first: Nobody, it seems, likes to do" dog nails. Not you
woman holding nail clippers near dog

How to Train Your Dog to Accept Husbandry Chores

I put my hands on my dogs at least a few dozen times a day. It might be to attach or untangle a leash, look into ears, check teeth, brush or trim fur in various places, put on a Thundershirt, apply flea and tick preventative, or just to feel the soft silky warmth of dog under my hand. We humans are a tactile species, and with our handy opposable thumbs, we're always doing something to manipulate our canine companions and their body parts.
showing dog nail clippers

Trimming a Dog’s Toenails

Even behaviors that don't lend themselves well to choice, such as trimming hair and medicating ears, can incorporate an element of choice and priming, by teaching your dog to station." To "go to station" means to to go to a specific spot where nine times out of 10 (or better yet

Keeping Your Dog’s Feet Healthy

My young Bouvier, Atle, has the triple threat of dog nails: black, stout, and surrounded by lots of hair. Regular nail trimming is not a task I relish, yet the importance of trimming nails can't be underestimated. Left untended, long nails can splinter or break off, affect your dog's gait, and cause orthopedic issues and pain. Although ultra-critical for performance dogs, proper foot care is required for the health and well-being of all dogs – couch potato or agility star.

A Counter-Conditioning Protocol for Trimming Your Dog’s Nails

Determine the location of touch your dog can tolerate without reacting fearfully or aggressively. Perhaps it’s her shoulder, perhaps her elbow, or maybe her knee. She should be a little worried, but not growl or try to move away. This is called the threshold. With your dog on-leash, touch her briefly and gently at threshold. The instant your dog notices the touch, start feeding bits of chicken, non-stop. After a second or two, remove the touch and stop feeding chicken.

Canine Emery Board Training

According to trainer M. Shirley Chong, the easiest way to trim a dog’s nails is to have dogs trim their own nails. Chong says, “It’s easy! Find a board about 8-12 inches wide (the wider the dog, the wider the nail file needs to be) and about 24-36 inches long. At a hardware store, get some of the stick-on tape that is used on wooden steps to make them slip-proof. It’s rough, like extremely coarse sandpaper, and the adhesive lasts through anything. Cover the board with the slip-proof tape. You could also use sandpaper. The most important thing is to make sure the edges of the sandpaper are firmly glued down because otherwise the dog will peel it up. The adhesive used on the slip-proof tape won’t budge for anything. You now have a giant nail file for dogs!

A Case History of Slo from a Whole Dog Journal Subscriber

I adopted my greyhounds, Cleo and Ramses, from Personalized Greyhounds in Camp Hill, Pennsylvania on April 11, 2009. In May of 2009 Ramses was running in the backyard and tore one of his toenails off in the grass. The quick was exposed and it was bleeding profusely. The vet sedated him and then trimmed and wrapped his foot and prescribed an antibiotic. After several months the nail cap began to grow back, but as soon as it did it was scaly and immediately sloughed off. The quick was no longer raw so it didn’t bother him.

Trim Training

then brushing once or twice on those areas that he was least sensitive about (the top of his head and back of his neck).

Over the next few weeks I worked up to brushing his back

Latest Blog

No Balls in the House!

Boone lunged toward the ball first – but he’s not a good catcher – so the ball bounced past me toward a steel and stone side-table, with Boone in pursuit. He pursued so hard, he smashed his face right into the edge of the steel table.