Just like us, our dog’s skin and nails can take a beating in the colder winter months. Unattended nails that grow too long can break, cause discomfort or even do damage to a dog’s foot. Nails that are too long can lift your dog’s paw off the ground and can cause issues with the tendons in their feet and the bone structure to weaken.
Here are some tips from our experienced Groom Team at the Company Store on how to take good care of Fido’s nails.
Keep your dog’s nails trimmed. How often you need to trim your dog’s nails depends on the dog and their lifestyle. For most dogs it is recommended they get trimmed every 4-6 weeks. Dogs that get a lot of exercise on pavement, may need to have their nails trimmed less often.
For those of us in colder climates, dog’s feet touch pavement less in the winter and this could be why their nails seem to get longer in these colder months.
If your dog doesn’t like to have their nails trimmed, you also may want to try an electric file.
Keep an eye on the nails for breaks and splintering. Dog’s nails seem to break often in the winter. It could be from the ice and debris on the ground and roads or that their nails and skin are more brittle during the winter months. Regularly check the nails for any breakage.
If there is a break, make sure to clean the area around the nail. If a nail breaks, the quick can be exposed. Salt and debris from the roads and walkways can get into the wound and can cause an infection. If the quick is exposed, rinse the area thoroughly. If the quick is bleeding, you can put styptic powder on the area to stop it. If you do not have access to styptic powder, you can use cornstarch too.
By making Fido’s feet and nails a priority, you can help prevent the hassle and pain of broken nails.