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How Long Should A Greyhounds Claws Be?


Guest greyfiend

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Guest greyfiend

My Greyhound had long claws from foster home. I learned how to use a Dremel tool from a professional dog groomer. I do them weekly and of course, stop before the "quick", but get as close as I can. I understand that the quick will slowly recede and that I can get the nails shorter & shorter until they are at a functionally appropriate length (not causing the toes to twist when they walk, etc.). Right now, on a hard level surface they do not touch the ground, but when he walks I hear the "clicks" lightly.

 

So my question is: How does everyone else determine the "right" length for their dog's claws? I just want to make sure that they're still not too long.

 

Thanks :)

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Off the floor (ie. no "clicks"). I would say if anything these guys need to have shorter nails than other breeds, who often rely on walking on the ground to grind their nails down. In the case of greyhounds, you can have other foot problems develop if nails are left too long. Sounds like you're on the right track with the dremeling, I would just keep at it, maybe 2-3 itimes per week until the quicks have receded and you have them the length you want, then you can switch to weekly for maintenance.

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Jen, CPDT-KA with Zuri, lab in a greyhound suit, Violet, formerly known as Faith, Skye, the permanent puppy, Cisco, resident cat, and my baby girl Neyla, forever in my heart

"The great thing about science is that you're free to disagree with it, but you'll be wrong."

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Personally, the clicks are fine as long as they aren't walking on the nails (ie: when standing still, the nails aren't touching). Also, I rely on the clicks to know when they're moving around in our house. Miss Echo asks to go pee by pacing back and forth down the hall, without her clicks, I wouldn't know she has to go pee.

IMHO, they need their claws to dig in when they run, it stabilizes them. If you go too short, they don't have that traction.

Jennifer and Beamish (an unnamed Irish-born Racer) DOB: October 30, 2011

 

Forever and always missing my "Vowels", Icarus, Atlas, Orion, Uber, and Miss Echo, and Mojito.

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CRRG says short enough so that you can slide a couple of pieces of newspaper under them. One of our volunteers, who is also a DVM candidate, did some research that determined 1/8 to 1/4 inch off the ground is best to prevent toe dislocations and breaks. Turbo's are all over the place. Some are really short, some are medium, and those dang outside back toenails are longer than I'd like 'em.


Meredith with Heyokha (HUS Me Teddy) and Crow (Mike Milbury). Missing Turbo (Sendahl Boss), Pancho, JoJo, and "Fat Stacks" Juana, the psycho kitty. Canku wakan kin manipi.

"Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities." - Voltaire

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I read somewhere once that you should be able to slide a quarter under their nails and they will be at the correct length. I use this guideline for mine, and it seems to work well. I don't think you can go by the clicks, either, as greyhounds have a gait like a horse rather than like most other dogs. That's also why they really don't wear their nails down much naturally.

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I read somewhere once that you should be able to slide a quarter under their nails and they will be at the correct length. I use this guideline for mine, and it seems to work well. I don't think you can go by the clicks, either, as greyhounds have a gait like a horse rather than like most other dogs. That's also why they really don't wear their nails down much naturally.

 

And I have always heard that you should be able to slide a playing card under the nails. There's a whole lot of difference between the thickness of a quarter and the thickness of a playing card. I think the longer length gives them better traction -- so maybe that is the standard for racing & lure coursing. My dog's activities are limited to walks and backyard runs, so maybe he doesn't need the length.

 

I have never trimmed my dog's nails. We do a lot of sidewalk walking and I think that keeps them short. My dog's nails clear the floor when standing, but always click when walking.

 

I have had other dogs that did the same amount of pavement walking, but still needed trimming. So I guess it depends on the dog. Mine always does the pee victory dance -- on the grass, not on pavement. I wonder if that keeps them short?

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I'm sure those folks actually involved in racing on this board can give a better answer, but it seems highly unlikely that LONG toenails would be desireable in racing. The risk of toe injuries would no doubt increase a lot.

 

I've noticed in a lot of the pictures people post here nails I consider way too long. A lot of people have trouble doing it themselves I think. The vet clinic I go to offers "tech" appointments for $15, and they take the dog off your hands for two minutes, clip 'em up nice and short for you, and off you go! The dog doesn't hate YOU, and the problem is taken care of!

 

I'm not sure which wonderful Greyhound Welfare person clipped George's nails before I got him, or if they were still short from the track, but I just follow the group's advice and tend them once a week. I got a Dremel "MiniMite" on Amazon.com (cordless, but rechargeable!) and I'm just following the shape they were in.

 

So much easier to do it regularly than to have a big fuss once they're too long!


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Susan,  Hamish,  Mister Bigglesworth and Nikita Stanislav. Missing Ming, George, and Buck

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I try to keep them so I can slide a couple pieces of paper underneath-- a bit more than 1/8 of an inch. They still do click some when they walk, but the nails are not touching the ground when they are standing.

 

Sully has the world's fastest growing nails... I'm always trimming his.... :rolleyes: He can be a drama queen about it, but overall he isn't bad, but then he knows he'll get a treat, and some snuggle time on mama's lap. :lol (he's The Love Sponge, so any form of attention, petting is a huge positive reward for him. Works about as well as good stinky treats)

 

Diesel's don't grow so fast, so he's ok with every other week. I swear they are made of iron though! They are HARD!

 

Sebau is the only one that fights (not aggressive, she just yanks her feet away and gives the "woe is me" look) I go for her first, since she "disappears" as soon as the clippers come out. :rolleyes: Her nails also grow very fast.

In vino veritas
Rachael with Rook, missing Sully, Sebau, and Diesel

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