Nail trims are an essential part of your pets health. It’s an easy thing to overlook primarily because it’s not something new pet owners usually think about when getting a new pet. Most new owners know that they need to get their pet vaccinated and have regular veterinary check ups to maintain their pets health. But the more regular maintenance like teeth brushing and nail trimmings often go unnoticed.
What You Need to Know
The importance of having your cat or dogs nails trimmed to a healthy length usually becomes apparent when one of two things happens. Either you or a family member are injured by the overgrown nails, or the pet themselves are injured. For the most part, nails that are a little too long won’t be very noticeable. You may be able to hear some clicking sounds when they walk on certain surfaces but other than that, there’s not very many signs. But in the event that they catch a long nail on human skin, a carpet, or any other surface, you’ll soon realize why it’s so important to have them properly trimmed.
A nail that gets caught can be ripped out completely. If you’ve ever experienced this in your lifetime, then you know that it is extremely painful. To make matters worse, they can also become dirty and infected much easier than ours because they’re often touching more surfaces with the open wound. This means the a vet trip is usually in order. Sometimes the nails will partially break, requiring local anesthesia to numb the area and in some cases they can end up needing the remaining nail pulled out.
Prevention is KEY
Although these are scary scenarios to have to picture, the good news is that it’s all completely preventable! Keeping up with their regular trimmings will immensely decrease the risk of injury. Most vets recommend about 4-6 weeks in between trims. A great way to tell if it’s time for a trim is by examining your pets nail yourself and looking at the distance between the quick and the end of the nail. You’ll want to keep this as short as possible.
You should also check with your vet to ensure that you’re feeding a high quality diet for your pet. Just like with humans, what they eat affects their overall health. Vitamins and minerals are what forms health nails and without these nutrients in the adequate amounts, you may notice brittle nails that are easily split or broken. If your pet have issues with brittle nails, you can ask your vet about potentially adding fish oil to their diet as this will help with their coat and nails.
Know Your Specific Pet’s Schedule
Whether you have a cat, dog, or guinea pig, they’re likely to develop a pretty regular grooming schedule. Once you know what it is, it’s up to you to stick to it. We recommend putting a reminder on your phone or calendar to help prompt you to successfully follow the schedule. You can easily trim their nails at home or hire a cat or dog trimming service to help you get the job done! In either case, maintaining a regular schedule should always be a top priority.