Nails. My arch nemesis.

Discussion in 'Dogs - General Dog Chat' started by Dizzy, May 5, 2013.

  1. Toller_08

    Toller_08 Active Member

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    Dance is absolutely awful with nails. She squeaks and yelps and jerks and is just an all around brat, even before the dremel turns on. Honestly, the only thing that worked is laying her flat on her side, pressed against the back of our livingroom couch so that she feels like she can't squirm her way out as easily, and then I have my own way of stretching her legs so that they're not as mobile and jerky (works well, but hard to explain). It's still hard, and she hates it, but no amount of treats made even a bit of difference. And it's a fact of life that needs to be done, so we just get it done regardless of how she feels about it. Which might make me sound mean, but sometimes things just have to be done whether they want it to be or not. I can do anything else with her feet and she's perfectly fine. So forcing her to get her nails done certainly didn't make her foot shy in any other way. She just doesn't like nail clippers or the dremel.

    So, I'd try to find a way to hold him so that he can't jerk away as easily and reinforce himself, and feed him lots as you go.

    The Dobermans aren't a fan of nail time either, but they tolerate it. They jerk a bit and I have to watch for the kangaroo kick of the back legs sometimes, but they lay nicely overall and I feed them treats intermittently. And then there's Journey who just lays there like jello for the most part, super relaxed. Thank goodness.
     
  2. Upendi&Mina

    Upendi&Mina Mainstreme Elitist

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    Nails are not an option here. I always used clippers, but when I did start with a dremel I got them used to the noise and then not staying still for it wasn't an option. Cara is the best about this, I also lay her on her back in my lap (a position that she loves anyways and can be used to calm her in other situations anyways).
     
  3. Dizzy

    Dizzy Sit! Good dog.

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    There is just no way to pin Fred down and hold him still. He will not be held like that. We've tried him on his side, on his back and even being held (he's too heavy. And still flails). And not to mention he's too strong to forcibly hold.

    He is happy to lay on his back, his default behaviour is bang (lay still on side). But he does not lie still for nails.

    I don't think it just not being an option is an option for us!

    If it was as easy as holding him still and telling him NO, then he'd have his nails lovely right now!

    I think the force treats down him and do one nail a day is the only option for the moment.
     
  4. Southpaw

    Southpaw orange iguanas.

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    Handling/grooming procedures are not optional here. Juno & Happy are fine with nail trims - Juno lays on her side, Happy sits. It's a piece of cake. Happy was not so cool about it when I first got her, but it was a matter of too bad so sad... I had to have someone hold her who would NOT give in to her struggling or trying to get away. Because as soon as you give in, they're just gonna keep on trying. She gets the rules now and I can trim her nails on my own, with her just sitting there.

    Lucy is the only one that still puts up a fight... because you know, little dogs are brats :) I flip her on her side and hold her down with my forearms while simultaneously clipping her nails. She's small enough that it works.

    If she were bigger I'd sit on her lol seriously, I have to sit on Juno in order to clean her ears. :rolleyes: We're not really all roses and butterflies here, for these things I really am not going to take the time to "properly" desensitize them and get them to enjoy it... it needs to be done and I'm doing it now and they just have to deal.

    But I hold down flailing dogs that weigh more than me on almost a daily basis, so it's no biggie for me. I probably just wouldn't clip them if I really could NOT do it.
     
  5. Kirsten&Gypsy

    Kirsten&Gypsy New Member

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    Tough love was what worked best with Gypsy. When she was a pup, I just kinda held her down matter-of-fact, until she quit wiggling. Still behavior got treats. Misbehavior/wiggling/kicking got a tighter grip until she knocked it off. I talked to her in a gentle, happy way through the clipping. We finished up the nail trim with a game of tug or a trick session. Nowadays, she's very cooperative. Occasionally, she'll kick at me while I trim and I'll interrupt her and rearrange her so she can't continue. She still gets a few treats.
     
  6. BlackPuppy

    BlackPuppy Owned by Belgians

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    Nails! Yes, the bane of my house, also. It doesn't help that all my dogs have black nails and sometimes I hit the quick. I swear the quick grows with the nails.

    Anyway, the worst by far was my female Malinois. At 10 weeks old she would scream bloody murder if she even saw the clippers. I hate to think what my neighbors were thinking I was doing in there. (Everything was difficult back in the puppy days. I have been comparing notes with others who bought a dog from this breeder, and it seems we all have the same problems.)

    Well, Malinois are smart, and she is no exception. Today she jumps on the table when she sees me get my reading glasses and clippers and waits for her pedicure. I mostly use a clipper, sometimes a dremmel. But food was her great motivator. And since she also understands English, we struck a deal. Food for clipping.

    I started out with one cookie per nail. And I told her that. It talk her through the entire routine, even now at 8 years old. But now it's one cookie per foot. It's still not easy with her, she has a neurotic, OCD termperament. But the deal works for us. If she has a nasty day it goes like this.

    "Okay, you can have a cookie if I cut these 4 nails, 1, 2, 3, 4, Good Cookie Girl!" She can count. Trust me.

    I know it sounds silly, but my dogs do much better when I tell them what is going on. I narrate at the vet, in training class. When I leave for work or the store I tell them when I'm coming back and not to worry.
     
  7. joce

    joce Active Member

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    I have never had to do blitzs nails. He wears them down and I am so thankful for that!

    Now my corgi gizmo will chew on my hands while I do hers. I have given up and just let her do it.

    Byron used to be fine with dremel or clippers. All of a sudden about a year ago he hated it. he will back into the corner and shake. So his nails are long now because I worry about him scaring himself to death, literally. I just get the ends every once in a while when he is lying on the couch and doesn't catch what I am doing. I never would have let him get away with that before but he is so old I don't want to stress him.
     
  8. lizzybeth727

    lizzybeth727 New Member

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    Actually, it does! It also receedes when you cut the nails really short, right up to the quick. That's why a dremell is so nice for doing nails, you can grind them down all the way almost to the quick and then they'll continue to receede.
     
  9. kaykay21

    kaykay21 herder brain & drool face

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    i wait for jayson to fall asleep then i do all for paws. he doesnt realize im doing them and im done by the time he wakes up. laika thats another story. i have to hold her down and clip all at the same time so it consists of me having laika lay on her side on the bed me kneeling on the floor puting my arm around her to hold her down and with that same arm grabbing a paw and clipping. she likes to pull away still though lol
     
  10. SpringerLover

    SpringerLover Active Member

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    Both of my dogs had terrible experiences with nails before I learned how to do them so it took a TON of desensitization work to get them comfortable with it. Bailey is still petrified of the sight of the big orange handled clippers being out. We have a very stable routine for dremeling her nails though and she's gotten very very good about it. Buzz lets me do just about anything to him these days.

    I taught Amber, a lab I watch, to lie on her back with her head down in order to earn dremel cookies. She apparently flails considerably when her owners try to clip them.

    I haven't done Dixie's (new name Dani/Dany!) nails yet because I keep forgetting when I DO have help, aka, someone to feed!
     
  11. meepitsmeagan

    meepitsmeagan Meagan & The Cattle Dog Crew

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    If they are bad with it, definitely best to start with two people, one to feed awesome foods, and one to handle the foot/trim a nail at a time.

    However, before that even, I always work on just the restraint. I start with no food, no clicker, just me and the dog. Take the foot, and just hold it until they sit still, release. Repeat. Spread toes and such, as well. I tend to pair it with a stay once they have that down. Just keep at it, and the release itself is a good reward. Just keep lengthening the duration of the hold from there.

    When they are getting better about holding the feet, then I bring in food and clippers. I will hold the foot, say "stay", bring clippers up to nail, c/t. I just kind of snowball from there making the crackle sound of the clippers next to their nail, then just take off the tip, then another little bit, then move to the next toe. If you act like you have all day, it will take 15 minutes; if you act like you have 15 minutes, it will take all day. :)
     

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