We once had an Australian Shepherd who hated having his toenails trimmed. I mean hated. He would fight and try to escape through the whole thing. We muzzled him to get the job done… and that was before I learned that it’s easy to get a dog to like a muzzle by feeding treats through it.
Someone suggested to me that we try a Dremel tool for trimming Teddy’s toenails. We did and it went better… soon it went much better and we were able to dispense with the muzzle. That was some years ago and now I use my Dremel tool exclusively for this task, for any dog.
I sit on the floor with my dog, hold the Dremel tool in one hand, and hold the dog’s paw in the other. I have developed a habit of holding that paw so that my fingers are on the nail to be trimmed, a little bit back from the end of the nail. This has two effects: I’m holding in a way that gives me the best access to the nail and it reduces the vibrations of the turning Dremel tool that the dog feels. Some of my dogs have cared about this, some haven’t.
It’s easy to know when to recharge it as will go a bit more slowly as you hold the drum to the dog’s toenail.
There is a one-time investment in the Dremel tool, but my first one lasted me about 12 years. Well worth it for the greater ease of trimming.If you already happen to have a Dremel tool around the house, you can use it rather than getting this one.
And while you’re doing toenails…
How about teeth? Do you brush your dog’s teeth? LarryDog gets “beauty parlor time” — theoretically every weekend, though sometimes we don’t get around to it that often. I get the toenails done right away, then follow that with a good brushing. His favorite part is having his teeth brushed, because he seems to like the flavor of his doggy toothpaste. Don’t use human toothpaste; flouride isn’t good for dogs. Little kits of a dog-shaped toothbrush with a tube of doggy toothpaste are widely available. Last time LarryDog had a vet checkup, his teeth got high marks for their condition!