Choosing the Right Pet Nail Trimmer

Select an appropriate nail trimmer based upon your pet's size.

It is important to keep your pet’s nails trimmed on a regular basis.  Failure to keep a dog’s nails trimmed will result in the nails becoming overgrown, making it difficult and uncomfortable for your dog to walk.  Most cat owners keep the sharp tips of the cat’s nails trimmed to reduce scratches. Additionally, long nails are more likely to get snagged or caught in objects such as carpeting, which may cause injury to your pet.

There are three main types of pet nail trimmers: the scissors, the guillotine, and the pliers style nail clipper. Which one is best for your pet?

Scissors Type: These look like a pair of small scissors, except the blade has a semicircular opening where you insert your pet’s nail. When you close the scissor blades, the nail is cut.  This type of trimmer usually works best for cats, as well as smaller dogs. There is no blade to replace with this sort of trimmer.

Guillotine Type: A guillotine-style pet nail trimmer has a small opening at the end of the trimmer where you place the nail through.  As you squeeze the handle closed, a metal blade slides across the front of the metal opening and cuts the nail.  The blades eventually become dull and require replacement over time, but some find this type of clipper the easiest to use.

Pliers Type: The pliers type of nail trimmer work like the scissors type, but they have heavier handles and thicker, stronger blades, and are best for large dogs with thicker nails.

It is best not to use human nail clippers on your pet, as this type of clipper is not designed for the more rounded shape of pet nails, and may cause the nail to split.  Be sure to select a type of pet nail trimmer that you will be comfortable using, and is the right size for your pet.

What type of clipper do you use to trim your pet’s nails?

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