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I feel terrible

Discussion in 'Dog Chat' started by Nellybelly, May 12, 2010.


  1. Nellybelly

    Nellybelly PetForums VIP

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    When I got Bella she was very very very afraid of being bathed, dried, groomed, clipped, but we have worked on all of the above and she is fine with all of thema nd does not get stressed out. However, the one thing we have yet to crack is nail clipping. At all.
    I usually do one nail,a nd she flips, so I stop, do the next one the next day etc etc. She gets so stressed she wont even accept.
    Today I decided to just clip all her nails. Maybe this would be less stressful than doing 1 or 2 a day for a few days until we're done. Well it wasn't. I ended up having to physically restrain her and I could see she was stressed, but I kept at it:( I feel unbelievably mean now, although for a change we have all nails clipped.

    She is very fond of our vet, but when he tried to clip her nails the other day she got really stressed and we decided together with the vet to leave it, as she had already ahd her earns cleaned and paw examined and we didn;t want to stress her out.

    I don't know what to do in the future. We walk a good 3 hours a day, but we do minimal road walking so her nails dont get worn down enough, but apart from the dew claw do not grow long enough to cause a problem either. Maybe I could cut only the dew claw?

    Any suggestions ?

    I don't want to get told that what I did today was wrong. I knwo it was. I feel awful:( BUt this is the 6th time I try to cut her nails. I have tried feeding her treats while showing her the clipper. I ahve tried just touchig it to her nails without cutting. She just doesn't seem to get used to it. I felt terrible holding her down while doing her nails, I felt so cruel...but I just didn;t want to draw it out over the period of a few days again.
     
  2. katiefranke

    katiefranke PetForums VIP

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    I know this might sound silly, but does she know 'paw'? maggie used to hate the clippers but after teaching her 'left paw', 'right paw' and then 'left foot', right foot' as cues, she is much better about it.

    I just taught the cue completely separately to any nail clipping and would always make a huge fuss of her for any tiny step and give treats. Then when she was used to this, when she gave me her paw I felt all around it and poke my finger gently up between her paw pads to feel for grass seeds etc. I taught it with really smelly sausage treats as the reward.

    I also bought new clippers so she didn't know what they were - they were different shape etc and worked in a different way.

    Then once she knew the cues really well, I asked her to give her paw and felt it etc and then had the clippers in my other hand and didnt do anything, but treated her. Then I did it with the clippers touching her. Then I did it putting the clippers round her claw. And then finally clipping one. Then two etc etc. And literally just built it up gradually...in between times I did quite a bit of lead walking on the road too as I was practicing her loose lead walking too so it kept her claws relatively well worn. And I also did loads of training with the 'paw' and 'foot' cues in between as well - with loads of treats to keep it a really high value and fun 'trick'.
     
    #2 katiefranke, May 12, 2010
    Last edited: May 12, 2010
  3. Nellybelly

    Nellybelly PetForums VIP

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    Yes, she does know paw:)
    But the minute she sees the clippers she freaks out. I have tried doing it without holding her paw so as nto to freak her out, but it's too risky that I will cut too deep if she moves, so I cant.

    she is fine with me trimming between her paws with scissors. Maybe new clippers would help. I think the problem started because a groomer she went to one cut too deep and the nail bled....and she has been damaged by this. I do all her grooming myself now, and we manage fine apart from the nails.
     
  4. Freyja

    Freyja PetForums VIP

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    Have you tried using a dremel and grinding her claws rather than cutting them. William used to hate having his claws cut but would happily sit with his bum on the edge of the sofa whilst I did them with the dremel.
     
  5. Nellybelly

    Nellybelly PetForums VIP

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    Sounds like a great idea.
    I have never heard of a dremel before...but I assume it is like a nail file? I will see if they sell it here, if nto I will order it online. Nothing is worth the stress for Bella with clippers. SO I will glady use a different method.
     
  6. katiefranke

    katiefranke PetForums VIP

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    The dremmels are quite expensive i think - they are like electric nail file type things - I was thinking of getting one for maggie but couldnt decide!

    Actually that reminds me, in the mean time if you want something - when maggie was going through a particularly bad patch of not wanting her nails cut before we taught the cues fully, I used a metal dog nail file and I think this would at least work if bella's nails are not getting mega-long.
     
  7. Freyja

    Freyja PetForums VIP

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    Its electric and is I suppose like a nail file. Mine has a spinning thing which has a file over it the grinds the claws away they can be noisy but I think you can get silent ones.
     
  8. Nellybelly

    Nellybelly PetForums VIP

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    Thank you both, have given me some great ideas.
    I just don't like stressing Bella out, and i am still upset over it.

    I will look inot both the nail file and the dremel, I dont mind how much it costs. Anything to make nail clipping stress free for Bella!
     
  9. Mum2Heidi

    Mum2Heidi PetForums VIP

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    What about something like this

    YouTube - Pedipaws Instructional Video

    I bought a cheap one from ebay for Heidi and it works well. However, I find clipping is quicker and easier so have gone back to that.

    There are 2 types a standard and deluxe (I think). The standard grinds to a hault (pardon the pun) if nails are substancial but was fine for Heidi, bigger dogs with more robust nails would need the deluxe version.

    Hope you manage to sort something.
     
  10. Nellybelly

    Nellybelly PetForums VIP

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    That looks good too;)

    Basically anything that is not clippers. I am glad I have a months time until she is due her next nail clip...
     
  11. Mum2Heidi

    Mum2Heidi PetForums VIP

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    Whatever you choose I think you are going to have to desensitise her really slowly to have a chance of it working. I would leave it lying around for a few days, pick it up yourself and play with it. If it makes a noise, after a few day of leaving it around and messing with it yourself, I would switch it on and off for a few days, pretend to use it yourself. All this before even trying to get it near her and then introduce it to her equally slowly. It will probably drive you bonkers but if you rush it - it will all be over in seconds :lol:

    You have probably already decided to do this and I dont mean to offend but my arab was the typical "lead a horse to water" critter and I used to spend half my time doing the slowly slowly touch, but once I had - we never looked back. The trust he put in me was amazing and people used to watch in awe as we conquered situations that their cobs wouldnt even think about - oh how I miss my boy x
     
  12. Nellybelly

    Nellybelly PetForums VIP

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    On Saturday it's a year without my Nelson, and I really miss him so unbelievably. The endless memories are with me forever, but I would give anything to actually do all those things with him again.

    You haven't offended me in the slightest. I appreciate the advice. I have gone slow and stready with all other aspects of her grooming and it has worked wonders, but I just think the nails are going to be our everest:( I will take it ridiculously slowly with the new nail clipping tool which I will decide to buy... I just hope the fact that it isn't going to be the conventional clippers will help her to be less stressed.
     
  13. kazschow

    kazschow PetForums VIP

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