Border Collie nail trimming is part of solid pet-grooming on top of bathing and brushing. Well-trimmed nails are an indication of both the owner’s and pet’s hygiene and health. Veterinarians and professional groomers are two places where you can seek assistance with this task. But if it’s done correctly, it’s actually a simple procedure.
There are pets that feel anxious about nail trimming. This is the same reason why owners are advised to do it with their pets at an early age. This way, dogs can be accustomed to it and forego of any stress and anxiety brought by the trimming.
How To Determine If Border Collie Needs Nail Cutting?
Your dog’s nails should be long enough to be visible, but not so long as to extend beyond the paw pads. But it may be a bit difficult to see your dog’s nails if they’re hairy. If the nails extend beyond the paw pad, that is an indication that you should start cutting their nails.
For example, if your Border Collie’s nails are already touching the surface or perhaps, hearing a clickity sound against the floor, then you should probably start trimming it. Other tell-tale signs that you need a Border Collie nail trimming are:
- Dog’s nails are beginning to scratch you
- Your dog seem to be tip-toeing as they walk
- The dog is sliding on the floor
- Licking of paws more than they used to
It is important that you give attention to your Border Collie’s nails early on to treat them through the process. Spending time with them as puppies and trimming their nails improves comfort in the process as they age.
Sometimes, there are dogs that are not used to people touching their nails. Perhaps, you personally are having a hard time trimming. In this case, bringing them to a professional groomer is the best path to take.
Why Is Nail Trimming Needed?
There are several real risks linked to an animal’s long nails. Some of these include but are not limited to:
- Splayed feet
- Reduced traction
- Deformed paws
- Damaged tendons
Scratches on hardwood floors, carpet snags, and claw marks on furniture are among the most common consequences people associate with nails.
Longer dog nails can make walking more difficult. In addition to that, there’s a possibility for the nails to be torn off if it gets caught on a piece of carpeting or furniture. If your dog’s nails are too long, there is a risk that it might sustain an injury due to entanglement. This might necessitate veterinary treatment if the injury is pretty serious.
Longer nails can snag carpets and get caught on fabrics. It can be stuck and cause the nails to be pried from the foot. This can cause the nail’s outer enamel to wear away. In return, it can expose the nail’s interior, known as the quick. Injuries and infections are therefore likely once it becomes exposed. There are instances in which shaving Border’s hair is essential to truly see how long their nails are.
Equipment Needed For Cutting Border Collie’s Nails
Perhaps, you’re interested to perform Border Collie nail trimming. It is a good thing as it opens an opportunity to bond with your dog as well. Before you do so, make sure that you have the essential equipment needed for trimming like guillotine-style clippers, scissor-style clippers, plier-style clippers, and nail grinders.
Guillotine Style Clippers
These clippers have a hole, letting you poke your dog’s nail through. It stays sharp for long, but may take some time to get used to.
Scissors Style Clippers
They look like small scissors, hence the name. It has divots at the end of the blade. If you have puppies or small dogs, this would serve a great purpose.
Pliers Style Clippers
These look like scissor-style clippers. The difference is, it has spring and is more durable. This is perfect for large and thicker dog nails.
Nail grinders are used for smoothening the nails. This simplifies the process of not hitting the quick.
How To Prepare Border Collie For Nail Trimming?
In just a week or so (in rare instances), your adult dog can be accustomed to nail trimming. But it takes a little while for puppies to be used to it. Stay patient, express positivity, and provide treats and praise. Use dog-safe grinders or clippers.
It does have a big impact if you often hold and touch your dog’s paws. This way, they will not be too sensitive to having their feet touched by someone.
Here’s a 7-day process on how you can help your dog adjust to nail trimming.
- 1st day – let your pup or dog sniff the nail grinder or clipper. Shower them praises and give them treats for positive behavior.
- 2nd day – gently touch the nail grinder or clipper on every paw. Once again, give praise and treats for their positive behavior.
- 3rd day – repeat what you did on day two. But this time, squeeze the clipper on every paw. Let your pup hear the clickity sound. You can turn on the grinder and let them feel the vibration. Quick note, don’t trim the nail yet right away.
- 4th day – touch again the nail grinder or clipper to their paws.
- 5th day – try to trim just the very tip of the paw nail. Just do ONE nail at this point. If they let you, make sure to give them treats and praises. This is progress you’re making. Now, try to repeat the process in the following days until they don’t mind.
- 6th day – try to trim a couple of their nails by this time.
- 7th day – keep trimming until you have cleared all their nails.
How To Cut Border Collie’s Nails?
It will be a great idea to do Border Collie nail trimming after the bath. At this time, nails are softer and easier to trim. If they’re not scheduled for bath time though, you can use wet paper towels instead to soften the nails.
When cutting your dog’s nails, there are simple steps to follow:
- Be gentle yet, firm – place your thumb beneath their toes. Use your forefinger as support by placing it above the nail. Clear your dog’s fur. This way, you have a clean view when clipping it.
- Extend those nails – push your thumb up and back slightly on the pad. As you do so, make sure that your forefinger is pushing it forward as well.
- Only the tip – make sure to clip only the tip. Declaws are on the inner side of your dog’s paws; don’t forget about this.
- Avoid the quick – never clip past the nail’s curvature. The quick is where your dog’s blood vessels are found.
What If Nails Have Dark Color?
Blood supply to the nail quick is difficult to see on black dog nails. Thus, it makes it extra challenging to cut them through. Look at the bottom of your dog’s nail after each cut to locate the quick.
When you are performing trimming on black toes, make sure to go slowly, have a firm hold on the paw but be gentle about it, cut the nails top to bottom, and only trim a small part of the nail at a time.
Once you successfully trim a nail, look head-on at the nail. If it still looks whitish, it means that you’re still good. Keep making small trims until you see the center look pinkish. It means that you have already or are close to the quick.
Be Careful Not To Cut The Quick of Your Border Collie
Quick contains nerve endings and blood vessels that run through the dog’s nails. This is almost always located above nail curvature. This structure nourishes the nails, allowing them to feel sensations and grow at the same time.
Nicking the quick while you’re trimming it could be painful. In more serious cases, it can cause bleeding. Just think of how much pain you’d feel if you cut your nails too far. That is the same feeling your dog would feel.
What To Do If You Cut Your Border’s Quick?
Say that you have cut the quick by accident, make sure to compress the wound immediately. Do it for a minimum of two minutes. Use a clean paper towel or cloth. If it’s just minor bleeding, try to rub it with a bar of scent-free soap. If it keeps bleeding, wrap it with ice using a paper towel or cloth. This will lessen the blood flow to the nails.
Conclusion: Is Trimming Border Collie’s Nails Necessary?
Border Collie nail trimming is part of your responsibility as a dog owner. Overextending nails can be the cause of certain health concerns like splayed feet, reduced traction, deformed paws, and damaged tendons. It could even be the cause of stress and anxiety for your furry friend.
What’s more, a dog with untrimmed nails may unknowingly damage furniture, scratch the fabrics of your carpet, and the like.
At the end of the day, if you can’t perform nail trims, you can always seek help from professional groomers or your trusted veterinarian. These people can help you to effectively perform Border Collie nail trimming.