Our most prescribed and requested treatment is nail trimming. Out of all the holistic and conventional options available at Riverside Animal Clinic & Holistic Center, who knew that nail trimming would be such a needed, wanted and medically necessary treatment.  Not just an everyday service, appropriate nail trims can make a major difference in your dog’s posture, walking ability, paw wear and even your home’s flooring.



The class will be taught by Dr. Jim Carlson and Avery Carlson.  Avery and Dr. Carlson will walk you through the key points of effective nail trimming, how long nails affect your pet’s life and longevity, how to handle behavioral issues and the different types of tools used for trimming. We will experiment with all types and have professional nail trimming tools at a deeply discounted purchase price.  The class fee is $25 and comes with a laminated at-home guide to nail trimming and anatomy.

Learning how to trim your pet’s nails can be confusing and intimidating. But we hope to coach you along with individual time spent on your dog.  This can save you money in the future and keep you from the need to bring your dog to Riverside Animal Clinic & Holistic Center for regular nail trims.  At this time, we are going to keep this session to dogs. We are happy to help you learn about cat nail trims and the different tools used at another time.  We feel the mix of pets would be a little worrisome and stressful for the animals.  This is not a great setting for a dog that has behavioral problems, anxiety or fear of getting nails trimmed.  Those dogs are best left to an appointment where we can gently work with them.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I really need to trim my dog’s nails?

Yes, you do.  There isn’t a dog out there that won’t need a nail trim at some point.

How often should I trim my dog’s nails?

Maintenance goals are once a week for your dog’s regular nail trim.  It seems frequent, but the nail grows quickly on most dogs and if you wait to trim once a month or longer, there is an issue with the quick.  A lot of people know what the quick is the blood vessel that supplies nutrients to the nail.  The quick can extend past the normal length of the nail, making it difficult to return the nail back to its normal position.  Which means, long nails, long quicks and the nail trim becomes more difficult. Keeping short nails regularly allows the quick to stay in it’s normal position.  The biggest fear of pet owners is “quicking” the dog, which means nicking the quick causing it to bleed.

How much does it cost to get a dog’s nails trimmed?

The cost for nail trimming depends on where you go, if your dog experiences behavior issues and whether your dog might need sedation for a nail trim.  There are many factors.  Some groomers will trim a dog’s nails for $5. This might work well for dogs that don’t have a problem with nail trims.   If your dog needs two people to hold and trim, that may effect the price and if your pet needs extensive recovery for postural or medical reasons the price might go up.  Some groomers and animal hospitals use Dremels to grind the nails to a smooth finish and that price is more expensive than a traditional nail trim.  In fact, the price might be $25 or more.

How do I cut my dog’s nails if they are black?

You should really look at an anatomy chart to familiarize yourself with a what a quick looks like and what a nail looks like.  Even then, it’s very hard to determine where the quick is on a black dog.  It’s important to look below the nail and locate the quick.  It’s solid and chalky looking.  Around that is the nail which extends out toward you. You’ll be able to see the portion of the nail that needs trimmed.  Go slow and be patient. Better to trim a little than a lot to avoid quicking the dog.

Behavior Problems with Nail Trims

One of the biggest complaints from owners is that their dogs don’t like to have their nails trimmed.  Most dogs who don’t like to have their nails trimmed have either had a bad experience, don’t like the sound or the restraint.  Talk to your veterinarian about sedation if your pet has such a serious issue.

To register, please email riversidemchenry@gmail.com