Puppies are notoriously squirmy and often protest any attempts at grooming. As with all other aspects of life, puppies need to be trained to be groomed. Any grooming task on a young puppy should be done with a firm, but gentle approach. Distracting the puppy with a treat, talking to the puppy gently, or simply holding the puppy on your lap and gently caressing him will distract him and help make your job easier.
From the moment you get your new puppy, spend some time each day to play with each foot so as to get him accustomed to someone touching his paws, pads of his feet and nails. When it comes time to clip his nails, he will be much more receptive to your grooming attempts.
It can be easier to clip the tiny nails of a toy puppy by using a human finger nail clipper. A human toe nail clipper works well with slightly larger puppies, but a regular nail clipper will need to be used for large breed dogs. Get the tip between the blades and just take of the tip, where the nail begins to curve.
Some puppies will not mind this at all and others will protest. Learn to do this quickly by holding the puppy in your lap and talk to him gently to distract him while quickly taking off the tips.
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There are two basic styles of nail clippers for dogs: a scissors type and a guillotine type. They work equally well, so choose the design you’re most comfortable with. Be sure to buy the correct size for your dog, too-for example, you don’t want to use huge clippers on a tiny toy dog.
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A guillotine trimmer is a type of nail clipper made for dogs. It has a circle on the end to hold the dog's nail and a blade the slices up through the circle when you close the handles. It's usually is easier on a puppy's small nails than the scissors style, and it normally has a guide that helps you trim only a small amount off the end of the nail to help prevent cutting to the quick. Some scissor-style trimmers have a guide as well. Scissor-style trimmers resemble short-bladed scissors and work the same way, by compressing the nail as they cut through it. Nail grinders are the power tool of nail cutting, and normally they are unnecessary for puppies. The noise and the vibration of the grinder can scare puppies who are unused to having their nails cut.
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