In a rush and just want my recommendation?  I think the Mighty Paw Dog Nail Clippers are a great choice.

Cutting your dog’s nails can be stressful, for both of you. It’s especially harrowing if your hound has had a painful experience in the past. They do not forget. 

This essential aspect of grooming can be a whole lot easier with good preparation and  the right tool for the job. You need good quality, easy to use clippers that cut the nails cleanly and safely.

In this article, I’m reviewing the following dog nail clippers.

Why Do Dog’s Need Their Nails Trimmed?

When their nails are too long, they make contact with the ground when the dog is walking or running. This causes the nail to be pushed back against the nail bed, and is painful. Dog’s can be very stoic, so this may not be obvious at first as it may not result in a limp.

Overgrown nails can also split and tear, or curl round to pierce the pad underneath. Long term damage to the foot and leg can occur, due to changes in weight distribution and gait, as your dog tries to alleviate the pain.

How Often Should I Trim My Dog’s Nails?

The more often you trim your hounds nails, the easier it will become. You’ll both get used to it and will develop a routine. If your dog is likely to become stressed, start out slowly. First of all, let your dog get used to their feet being handled.

When they’re comfortable with that, and it may take a few days, try touching their feet with the clippers. Again, take your time. You should definitely use some treats, or praise for success.

Finally, I would clip a small amount from an easy to reach nail. They need to get used to the sound of the clipper snapping the nail off. After a time, and with lots of patience, you will be able to trim the nails without stressing your hound, or yourself.

How Short Should My Dog’s Nails Be?

Your dog’s nails should not touch the ground when they are standing. Older, or more house-bound dogs may need their nails cutting more often than very active dogs.

Is It OK To Use Human Nail Clippers On Dogs?

No. Human nail clippers are not powerful enough to cut through thick dog nails. Using cutters which are insufficient will cause splintering and pain. The other issue with human clippers is they are designed for flat nails. Dogs nails are rounded and much thicker.

Anatomy Of A Dog’s Nail

A dog’s nail consists of the living pink cuticle, or ‘quick’, which contains nerves and blood vessels. This is covered by the hard outer material called the shell. If you accidentally cut the quick, bleeding and pain will occur.

What To Look For In A Dog Nail Cutter

Scissor trimmers

These have a curved blade to cut the round nail. Simply line up the blade with the nail at the appropriate spot and make the cut. These trimmers are only useful for smaller nails, as they are typically not strong enough for the larger nails. They will need sharpening after a few uses.

Guillotine trimmers

These have an internal blade, and a hole at the end, through which the dog’s nail is inserted.

When the handle is squeezed, the blade moves forward to trim the nail. It’s important to know how to hold the trimmer in the correct manner so that it works properly. The blades can usually be replaced.

Pliers-style trimmers

These have a spring-loaded cutting mechanism, and a built-in blade guard to prevent over cutting. They are a little like garden pruners.

Nail Grinders

These are fairly new to the world of dog nail trimming. They are like rotary sanders. Some models have a protective sleeve over the grinder, with a hole to put your dog’s nail into. Others are external grinders, like a Dremel tool.

How Do I Cut My Dog’s Nails?

Clipping your dog’s nails properly takes patience, and practice.

Find a place where you and your dog are comfortable, and get set up before you begin. You need to be sitting down with your dog, in a stable position. This will keep you both safer throughout the process.

Have a good look at the nails, and see if you can identify the quick. On light-colored nails, it is easy to see the quick. Many dogs have black or darker-colored nails, making it impossible to see the quick. The nail anatomy is still the same. Start with a small trim, and check the end of the cut nail to see if you can see the quick appearing.

You may find it worthwhile to see your vet, and ask them to show you how it’s done. You want to feel completely confident, and for your dog to trust in you. The more often you trim your hound’s nails, the easier it will become. 

BOSHEL Dog Nail Clippers

These Boshel, pliers-style cutters are extremely popular. I’m usually a little skeptical about the ‘recommended by professionals’ claims. However, there’s no denying that there are thousands of satisfied customers who have bought these trimmers.

I like the comfortable, easy grip, non-slip handles. The 3.5mm stainless steel blades are good quality, and should stay sharp for a long time.

The safety guard works well for medium to large dogs, and there is a bonus nail file tucked into the handle.

Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Easy to hold
  • Durable
  • Good safety features

Cons:

  • Safety guard too bulky for small dogs

>>Check Price on Amazon<<

Casfuy Dog Nail Grinder

Firstly, it’s rechargeable and portable. Cordless tools are an absolute game-changer. You can cut your dog’s nails wherever suits you, without being chained to a power-outlet. There is a built-in battery which lasts for two hours when charged. There is also the option of using AAA batteries.

This grinder is extremely quiet, which means your hound won’t be frightened of noise. It has two speeds, so you can adjust this to trim or smooth the nail. If your dog is a little nervous, start with the low speed. It may not feel so aggressive.

I like the choice of three grinding ports, although for the largest port you simply remove the protective sleeve.

Pros:

  • Well made
  • Good quality components
  • Well tolerated by dogs
  • Easy to use, and hold
  • Has a warranty

Cons:

  • Struggles with large, thick nails

>>Check Price on Amazon<<

Mighty Paw Dog Nail Clippers

These pliers-style cutters are slightly lower budget than some other, similar cutters.

The Mighty Paw clippers feature 3.5mm stainless steel blades, non-slip, ergonomic handles, a safety guard, and integrated nail file in the handle.

Mighty Paw is a USA family owned business, which has an excellent ethos. They test their product on their own dogs, and if you’re not happy, they’ll refund 100%.

Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Good quality
  • Smooth operation
  • Sturdy
  • Comfortable
  • Ease of use
  • Guarantee

Pros:

  • Some customers report nails chipping

>>Check Price on Amazon<<

Millers Forge Steel Pet Nail Clipper

Pliers-style cutters with red plastic grips. Classic styling with almost a retro look. The spring-loaded cutting mechanism is robust, and the built-in guard can be moved into position to prevent the over cutting of the nails. 

Quality-made of stainless steel to withstand years of use. These trimmers have the same features as most others of this style, but at a lower price point.

Pros:

  • Value for money
  • Easy to use
  • Comfortable to hold
  • Clean cut
  • Gentle action due to large spring

Cons:

  • Several customers report the guard being loose when purchased

>>Check Price on Amazon<<

GoPets Nail Clippers

High quality, pliers-style cutters with large non-slip handles, which are molded to make them easy to grip. These clippers have strong, stainless steel blades which do stay sharp for a long time. 

The smaller model doesn’t have the cutting guard, but the blade is angled so you can see where you’re cutting. A great feature, because the blade guards are often too bulky for small dogs. The large cutters have the usual guard.

The company offers a replacement tool or refund if you are unhappy with your purchase, and there is a lifetime money back guarantee.

Pros:

  • Good design
  • Comfortable to hold
  • Easy to use
  • Excellent guarantee
  • Good customer service
  • A portion of all profits go to animal charities, no-kill shelters, and animal rescues

Cons:

  • Some customers report quick dulling of blades

>>Check Price on Amazon<<

Conclusion

The winners for me are the Mighty Paw Dog Nail Clippers. It was a tough choice, but in the end I really like the look and feel of these trimmers. They are a great all-round tool, with very few reported problems. They’re razor sharp, so that means a clean cut. Pliers-style cutters are much easier for me to use, and the Mighty Paw brand is great value for money.

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