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  • Jeffrey Causby, ABCDT


Dog sitting

Does your dog cringe at the sight of nail clippers? Dog training has taught me a lot about caring for a dog. It is your duty to keep your dog groomed and part of that means clipping their nails. I know, us humans hate it as much as the dog does. What if I cut too deep and hurt my dog? What if he bites me? . It is your obligation to make sure they are taken care of on a regular basis. Below are a few tips to help you in the process.

* Teach your dog that you touching their paws is a great thing. Ideally you want to start this the very first day you get your puppy. If you have an older dog this is going to take a little longer.

* Log your progress from the first day so you can track your progress.

* Give a paw - Teach your dog to give you each of the two front paws.

* Hold a paw - Add duration to "Gimme Your Paw" You have to be able to hold the paw for as long as it takes to clip the nails. I would say your target goal to train is 3 minutes of allowing you to hold each paw. Don't squeeze hard on the paws when grabbing in the beginning.

* Finger Nail Clippers - Don't try to go right in and clip your dog's nails if he/she already has formed a negative association with them. After you teach your dog to give you their paw, you will need to desensitize them to being touched with the clippers before ever actually cutting a nail. This will ensure success.

* Do 3 sessions a day at 3-5 minutes each session.

* Don't waste a training opportunity by giving your dog his/her main meal in a boring bowl. Use their main meal to teach them that the clippers touching their nails is a good thing, their main meal.

* Handling - Stroke your dogs back, from the bottom of the neck to the tip of the tail, click and treat.

* Play with an ear, click and treat while touching ear. Do the other ear as well.

* Check in the mouth, have someone else click and deliver treat.

* Lift the tail, click and treat

* Gently grab their private areas, click and treat. You do want to do this, I promise you. Wouldn't you and your Vet appreciate if your dog didn't mind if he/she gets an exam?

* You have the power to teach your dog that it is safe to be examined, or groomed. All you have to do is practice.

Check out my youtube page for other helpful videos:

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