Nail Care - Tips For The Perfect Pedicure

Anyone who cares for a Pug knows how quickly their nails grow. Most dogs, Pugs included, do not enjoy having their nails clipped. How do you accomplish this daunting task while keeping your Pug at peace? Here are a few helpful hints for giving your Pug the perfect pedicure.

If you have a new puppy this is the time to start their nail care routine. Most dogs have some aversion to having their feet handled. You need to get them used to this when they are young. This will diminish their fear tremendously.
If you have adopted an older Pug it may have unknown fears. In this case, you will have to proceed with tender loving care. Do not attempt to cut their nails by force. Try to reassure them with a calm and loving voice. Get them comfortable with you holding and rubbing their feet. Let them see and inspect the tools. You must let them go at their own pace.

Before you can begin to clip their nails you will need the proper tools. Do not try to cut costs on nail clippers. The better the clipper, the easier the task. Most people prefer the guillotine type of nail clipper. They are the easiest to use. Make sure that the blade is sharp. Dull blades cause pain. Scissor types are good for clipping the tips off of nails. So, if your Pug doesn’t need a full nail trimming, this is a good option. Nail clippers come in a variety of sizes. Take care to get the appropriate ones for your Pug. You might want to have a file too. A file is good for polishing any rough spots left by the clipping. In addition to these items, you should have a styptic pencil, styptic powder or silver nitrate applicators. These will be needed to stop any bleeding that might occur. And finally, have plenty of their favorite treats handy.

You should start with a stress-free surrounding. Any noises or activities could startle your Pug causing a mishap. If you are comfortable with placing your Pug on your lap it could be beneficial to you both. It will provide them with a safe feeling while it provides you with better control. If not, try placing them on the kitchen counter. Lay a towel or non-slip mat down so that your Pug will not slide. Try to distract your Pug. They will accept it better if they don’t see it coming. Perhaps someone can talk to your Pug while you are busy with its nails.

When it comes time for the actual clipping you may be worried. How much do I cut? Properly trimmed nails should just touch the ground when walking. You may find that the front nails tend to need more care. This is normal. The front nails get less wear than the back nails. If you are lucky, your Pug will have light colored nails. The quick is easily seen in these so there really is no question. However, if your Pug has dark nails it is not so clear. With dark nails you may have to cut small sections at a time. This way you will avoid hitting the quick. As you continue to clip the nail you will see a gray to pink oval start to appear. When you see this do not cut any further or you will hit the quick. If this does happen don’t panic. Your Pug is okay. Apply the styptic or silver nitrate until the bleeding stops.

Dogs with extra long, uncared for nails are more problematic. It may takes weeks or months of careful trimming to get their nails the proper length. After each trimming allow a week for the quick to recede further up the nail. Then you can trim again. Continue this process until the proper length is obtained.

If your Pug is still resistant to clipping there is another alternative. You could invest in a nail grinder kit. They are affordable and easy to use. They can give you peace of mind that traditional clippers can’t. The nail grinder works quickly and safely to trim your pet's nails. It helps you to avoid the quick and it will automatically cauterize a bleeder at higher speeds. The kit comes with detailed instructions for use.

Are you still uncomfortable with the thought of clipping your Pug’s nails? Well, there is a third choice. You can always let a groomer or your veterinarian do it for you. That way neither you nor your Pug will have a bad experience.

No matter who clips their nails reward your Pug for a job well done. Give them lots of praise, treats, hugs and kisses. Try to make nail clipping a pleasant experience for you both.

Have questions, comments, or suggestions about this?
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Ozzie (about 10 years ago)

I have been contemplating buying a nail grinder - does anybody have any experience with it, and do you recommend using a grinder rather than clipping?

Pugsleigh (about 10 years ago)

I have a grinder and it took too long for my pugs.
I am curious about the Pedi Paws that everyone is
raving about.

pugs4me (almost 10 years ago)

I am curious too about a grinder for my older pug, Oscar. His nails are always so long. I do my best to keep them short, but it is a huge ordeal. He bites and makes awful noises. It all seems so traumatic for him. We have to wrap him in a towel to keep him from seeing what is going on and to keep him from biting. I am afraid that the noise from the grinder will scare him too. He just doesn't want you to touch his feet. Probably something that happened to him before we rescued him, so I try to be understanding.

Does anyone have a suggestion on a grinder that works well and doesn't cost a fortune?

Pugsleigh (almost 10 years ago)

I have a dremel, but find it too time consuming
I recently bought a Pedi Paws, but have not used it yet,
I will let you know when I do.
I have 3 pugs and only 1 of the 3 will (reluctantly) allow me to trim her nails.
I have been using the good ole' dog nail clipper.

I heard wonderful things about the Pedi Paws.

smileybugg (over 9 years ago)

I have a Pedi Paws, and it works beautifully on both of my puhs. It is cheap, and as long as the pugs get to sniff it and get used to any noises that it makes, it is alot easier than clipping.

pugme (over 9 years ago)

i have da pedi paws 2 and it works soooo much better than clipping. but i've realized dat the motor isn't dat strong. when u press harder on da nails, the pedi paws stops. but i like it a lot. raven is getting used to it 2.

tanziesmom (over 9 years ago)

When Tanzie was 4 months old, I bought the PediPaws. I began using it according to the instructions. I turned it on as I held her, I gave her pieces of her favorite treat as she allowed it to hum next to her. now at nearly 8 months old, she looks forward to having her pedicure right after her bath. Today, not only did she get a bath, ears and wrinkles thoroughly cleaned, pedicured, but she also had a bit of color added to her neatly trimmed nails. She loves being a girl!!!!!!!!!!

devonator (over 9 years ago)

A great tip I learned from another member is to smear the inside of a bowl with peanut butter (crunchy works best for mine) and as they work on licking the peanut butter, you can trim the nails. I was able to trim at least 75% of the nails snipped. That's the most I've been able to get at once. Usually, it's just two at the most!

predatorpug (over 9 years ago)

I just bought the pedi paws from petco(and made sure I could return it if it didn't work) It seemed to take a long time, but Haumea and Kamoku's talons were pretty long. Haumea is staying with us while her mommy and daddy are out of town. Neither one of them were cooperative. Although this is not But their nails aren't as sharp as they would be with the guillotine trimmer. We're going to do them again in a few days and see if it's quicker now that they are shorter and I'll let you all know if it's easier once the nails are at a manageable length.

Snook (over 9 years ago)

I got a pedi paws @ Ocean State Job lot for $3 if anyone is from the area i suggest you buy one there. If you dont like it, it was just $3. I have had no luck w/snook using it, but i have seen some good ideas on here to try.

pugsly (over 9 years ago)

Once the nails are shorter they are easier to trim. My boys can multi-task, they can lick peanut butter and pull away at the same time. I use the Dremel grinder but any grinder will do the same job.

olliegus0607 (over 9 years ago)

Ugh the dreaded nail clipping. I had to get a sedative from the vet (which doesn't really seem to work) so I could use the clippers/pedi paw on both of mine. They hate either one. I have tried giving the treats to distract them and all is just a plain nightmare no matter what we do! None of us look forward to nail clipping day and we all come out with the battle wounds to prove it!

milosmom (over 9 years ago)

I was paying the vet to clip Milo and Sampson but they both just hate it so much. I got the pedi paws and that was worse than taking them to the vet. So I finally got some dog nail clippers and my son will hold the dogs and talk to them and give them a treat and it works so much better doing it at home. They still get squirmy but they both know it has to be done after bath time.

lexidad (over 5 years ago)

I tried a Pedipaw on our two pugs, it thought it was a good idea but a peice of junk and clumsy to use. So a bought a cordless dremel mini-mate great quality and it takes different rotary tools. I use the small sand paper drum style about 1/2" diameter. The pugs don't mind it at sometimes I'll do just the front then the back later. Never have to worry about cutting too short or bleeding and smooths off any rough edges. Creates a bit of nail dust though, the Pedipaw would have caught the dust but just too big to work on little dogs.