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Monday, July 21, 2014

Nail Trims. Part 12. Finding the Quick.

One of the reasons that many dogs find nail trims so scary is because they have been "quicked" before.  The vet staff or groomer might have cut into the fleshy part of the nail.

We want to get close to the quick (to train back the quick and keep the nails short) but we don't want to cut into the quick (and cause pain and bleeding)

If our dogs have white or clear nails, the quick is fairly easy to see.  For darker nails we might need help:

Note: share these resources with your vet or groomer to get guidance before trying this on your own.
Also note: Some of the videos might have a good visual of where the quick can be found, but they might not provide good examples of how to cut or dremel.

See these pictures: Where's the Quick

See approximately 2:28 in this video

Approximately 2:45 in this video

Approximately :52 in this video

Third and fourth pictures from the bottom in this article

See figures 4 and 5 in this article

This article has some good pictures, but I would not follow some of the advice listed
- I would NOT recommend putting the dremel next to the dog's food bowl
- I would ask the dog to rest in a voluntary comfortable position for nail trims
and I would double check with vet or a groomer before using the grinding advice (exposing the quick)

A flashlight might help pet guardian find the quick

I've been experimenting with this. And so far this is what I have found to be the best way to facilitate seeing the quick using a flashlight:
The flashlight beam needs to be tiny. The tinier and more focused the better. Think pen light. The best position is between the toes. Start the beam at the base of the toe then move the beam towards the end of the toe nail.
The order goes flashlight, dog toe, human. So the human is viewing the toenail with the flashlight behind.
This worked well with my dog who has brown toenails and my dog who has very dark brown toenails.
Still trying to figure something out on my dog who has very black toenails. (pictured)

Note that some dogs might appear to have black nails, but once you use the flashlight, you might discover that the nails are only partially black and you still might be able to see at least part of the quick.

The video below shows how well the light works on Puddin's brown/tan nails.

See more on nail trims here

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