German Shepherd Dog Grooming Tip: Part 1 – Nails

by | Feb 14, 2013 | Adult dog, Adult Dogs, health, Puppies, puppy, Safety, training | 0 comments

Exploring the vast prairie of the Washita National Wildlife Refuge

Exploring the vast prairie of the Washita National Wildlife Refuge

Hi Everyone,

Today, I would like to discuss a grooming tip for your German Shepherd Dog, adult or puppy. Because German Shepherd Dog’s are relative clean in nature, they require very little grooming maintenance other than a good coat brushing a couple times a week and nails trimmed ideally twice a month.  Many German Shepherd Dog owners never clip their dog’s nails because their puppy was not properly trained and conditioned to have their nails trimmed.  Now as an adolescent or adult it is a nightmare to clip their German Shepherd Dog’s nails.  Other owner are afraid of accidentally cutting the quick. Thus, many German Shepherd Dog owners avoid clipping nails or take their German Shepherd Dog to an expensive grooming service or veterinarian.

It is a health hazard to allow your German shepherd Dog’s nails to grow long.  Sooner or later, due to the high activity level of your German shepherd Dog, they will snag and pull an entire nail off.  Such an injury is highly susceptible to serious infections that can result in amputation of a toe.

While your German Shepherd Dog is a young puppy acclimate them to nail clipping by playing with their toes while they are being loved in your lap, on the couch, or in the floor.  Make it a habit to play with their feet and toes by grabbing hold of the foot and spreading their toes apart.  This conditions your German shepherd Dog puppy to be relaxed regarding having their feet and toes messed with.  Then clip Your German Shepherd Dog puppy’s nails routinely at least every other week.  If you do this as your German Shepherd Dog grows up, you will be able to always clip their nails without problems.

Human toe nail clippers are ideal for your German Shepherd Dog puppy, but eventually you will need to purchase a good quality scissor nail clipper as shown below.  Never use the the guillotine type clippers on German Shepherd Dogs. Guillotine clippers tend to dull quickly and crush the nail rather than cut, which results in discomfort for your German Shepherd Dog.

Scissor Type Nail Clippers

Scissor Type Nail Clippers

Below the photograph shows the correct place to trim your German Shepherd Dog nails. The cut should be made in front of the quick where the nail starts to hook over.  If nails are white you can see the quick, however, most our German Shepherd Dogs have darker nails making it impossible to see the quick. Through experience you will know where to trim the nail to avoid cutting into the quick.  When you do cut into the quick it will cause some pain and bleeding, and you will need to apply styptic powder.  Do not be afraid of cutting the quick because “it will happen”, but as you continue to trim your German Shepherd Dog’s nails you will learn how close to trim.

281x 269 Champion Bogie getting nails trimmed

Tomorrow, I will discuss German Shepherd Dogs that resists or fights nail trimming and tell you how to train them so that their nails can easily be trimmed.

Ask me a question and I will provide my opinion.

Sincerely,

KeystoneGermanShepherds

 

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