Click, click, click: you can hear your dog as they trot along. You may not know this, but experts say that ticking sound is a telltale sign that your pup needs a nail trim.
It's not just a noise issue, though. Your four-legged friend needs a nail trim for a myriad of reasons — namely because it's a must-have for maintaining dog hygiene.
Here's why regular nail trimming is imperative to your dog's health and happiness.
Nails Help Your Dog Balance
Whether your pup competes in agility contests or simply races around your house and backyard, one thing is for sure: they need flat paws to balance themselves. Extra-long nails can cause an imbalance, though, making it tough for your dog to run and play as they want to.
So, that's the first reason why a doggie nail trim is so important. It makes it safer and easier for your dog to walk and run with perfect balance.
Your Dog Can Break a Nail, Too
If you have long nails, then you know how painful it can be to break one. Well, the same can happen to your pooch. When their nails are long, they're more likely to experience chips and cracks in their nails.
Regular clippings can keep their nails at the right length. Short nails are much less susceptible to these painful breakages.
Extra-Long Nails Put Pressure On the Joints
As we've said, your dog's paws are perfectly precise little pads. Short nails give them the ability to grip and balance themselves. Meanwhile, extra-long claws can throw off this equilibrium.
But incorrectly distributed weight doesn't just make your mutt imbalanced. Turns out, it can also put pressure on the wrong joints and areas of the body.
Over time, joint stress can cause even more serious health issues. Your dog may experience arthritis or chronic joint pain. Their overworked muscles and ligaments will be more prone to injury, as well.
The Nails Can Grow Backwards
You might think there isn't any harm in letting your pooch's nails get a bit too long. They grow outward, right?
As it turns out, extra-long nails can actually grow back into the paw pad. They start to curl once they get too long, which allows them to move in the wrong direction. If they do make it all the way back into your pooch's foot, they will be in quite a bit of pain when they walk.
The best way to avoid such a situation is, of course, to keep your dog's nails short.
Leaving Nails Long Lets the Quick Grow, Too
You might be afraid to trim your dog's nails because you know they are sensitive. It's true: there's a section of your dog's nails that's pink, and that's known as the quick. That section contains blood vessels, so you should never cut that part of your dog's nails — otherwise, they'll be in quite a bit of pain.
You might think you're better off letting the nails to their natural devices so you don't clip the quick. Unfortunately, though, if you leave the nails to grow, the quick will only get longer. That means your dog's nails will be even more difficult to trim — there will be an even larger area that you have to avoid to cut them safely.
How Often Does My Dog Need a Nail Trim?
Now, you know all of the reasons why you should make nail trims a part of your regular dog hygiene routine. But you have a few more questions to ask that will ensure your pup's got the healthiest nails possible.
Firstly, you probably want to know just how often you have to cut your dog's nails. In general, dogs need a nail trim every four weeks to keep things short and hygienic.
If you can't remember to clip them on your own, then you're in luck. Lots of groomers will include nail trims as part of their hair-care packages. For example, we offer the service as part of our deluxe grooming package.
You may not have your pet groomed once a month, though. In that case, you should keep an eye on their nails and trim them when they start to get too long.
And, of course, if you don't feel comfortable cutting your pooch's nails yourself, you don't have to. Even without a grooming session on the books, we can cut your dog's nails for you.
Are There Any Dogs That Don't Need Nail Trimming?
Nowadays, dogs spend a lot of time indoors. And, when they do go outside, they pad around on the grass. This surface is hardly abrasive enough to file down their nails.
But if your dog happens to run around on asphalt or concrete, the material can be enough to naturally file down their nails. Have a look for yourself: you will be able to tell if their nails have been filed in this way.
Otherwise, there's no way around it. Your dog will need nail trimming for its health, safety, and comfort.
Make Dog Hygiene a Priority With Trimmed Pets
As our name implies, we at Trimmed Pets know how to keep your pup's nails in order. But it's not just nail clipping and filing we do: we can handle all of your dog hygiene needs, and we bring our services directly to your doorstep.
Click here to make an appointment with us to trim your four-legged friend's nails with our without a tandem grooming service. No matter what, your pet will be happier and healthier for it — and that'll make you feel good, too.
Regular grooming appointments are important for keeping your dog's coat shiny, their teeth clean, and their nails nicely trimmed.
But if it's your puppy's first appointment or your older dog has had a bad experience in the past, preparing for regular appointments can feel like a chore, and can be stressful for your dog.
If you're ready to learn how to properly prep your pup for their next grooming appointment, keep reading for a few tips.
Introduce Common Grooming Tools as Early as Possible
If it's your first dog grooming appointment or your pet has expressed agitation during grooming sessions in the past, one of the best things you can do to prepare them is to introduce common grooming tools as soon and as often as possible.
Start small. Brush your pup for a few minutes each day, and work your way up to longer and longer sessions. Have them sit still or stand in one place while you brush them.
For younger or active dogs, keeping them in one place may be a challenge. It may be best to put on their collar and leash, and tie the leash to a table or doorway to help keep them in one area while you brush them.
Other common grooming tools you could introduce your dog to include nail clippers, a spray bottle of water, and a hairdryer. Giving your dog a bath at home can also help them to be calmer during their grooming session.
Get Puppies Used to Strangers
For puppies preparing for their first pet grooming session, the biggest hurdle may be adjusting to being handled by strangers.
Before their first grooming appointment, try to introduce your pup to strangers in social settings. Take your pup to the park, to dog-friendly stores, or for a walk downtown. When people ask, let them say hello to your pup, while you encourage good behaviors, like not jumping or barking.
The early you begin to introduce your pup to strangers, the better. Some experts say that puppies are the most impressionable during their first 8 weeks of life. This means there is a short window to set your pup up for being a friendly people-lover.
Bring the Salon to Your Home
Taking your dog to a traditional grooming salon is a big mistake. Whether it's their first appointment or they've had a bad appointment in the past, the entire experience can be challenging.
Not only is your dog unfamiliar with the location and the people, but they'll likely also spend a few hours contained in a crate. Even if they are crate-trained at home, this can still be stressful for your pup.
Instead, have the groomer come to you! With a mobile grooming service, your pup doesn't even have to leave your home. Appointments are faster, with less downtime for your dog.
Preparing Your Dog for Their Grooming Appointment
Your dog's first grooming appointment can be stressful for both of you. But by preparing them ahead of time and opting for mobile grooming, you can give your pup the care he or she needs in a calm, relaxed environment.
If you're ready to book your dog's next appointment, click here to learn more about our grooming services.
Allison Johnson is the Owner and Founder of Trimmed Pets. Trimmed is a woman owned and led Mobile Grooming Business servicing the greater Portland Metro area in Oregon and the greater Boise Metro area in Idaho.