Our black lab, Cooper has very thick claws. Some are almost as thick as my pinky finger. His quick has always been really long which doesn't give us an option to get them cut very short.
Just in the last couple of days I have realized that one has broken 1/2 way off. After looking them over, I realized another is about to do the same thing. It has been about a month and a half since we got them trimmed (Which doesn't seem all that long). You can see them split from both sides and then I guess they break off where the cracks are.
Has anyone else had this happen? Is it a mineral deficiency or something of that nature?
The more you trim the nails, it will help drive the quick back. I trim my dogs nails every 1-2 weeks.
I remember a post a while back about this but I can't find it. Are you giving him any fish oils or omega fatty acids? They are supposed to be really good for skin and nails.
As far as his long quicks I would suggest trying to dremmel them (but not until you have the flaking/breaking under control) the dremmel lessens the chance of cutting the quick and if you do it once a week at first just a little at a time it will make the quick receede. I use the dremmel on Mocha and Zeus (both have black nails) and it works great. It takes some time to desensatize them to the noise at first but it's totally worth it.
A month and a half isn't long? I regularly trim the nails on the dogs who aren't showing every 2 weeks. The dogs that are showing get them trimmed weekly.
♣ Laura ♣
Thank you bacatherine, that is very helpful. Unfortunately, with Cooper he is extremely hard to handle when we do anything that has anything to do with his claws or paws. He has never injured them, but is very scared. We have taken every avenue on making him feel comfortable. As for me, I didn't realize that every month or month and a half was a long time, everyone I have talked to thus far has always told me that was the appropriate time period.
We are taking him to the vet for a trim (And have been instructed by the vet to give him a 1/2 dose of Acepromazine) along with our other lab Ty and will be getting the splitting checked out. We are not currently giving either of them any fish oil or anything of that nature. Is there a brand you would reccomend and where would we find it?
Cooper is the sweetest boy ever, but he has some very serious anxiety issues that have unfortunately kind of been put on the back burner as we don't know how else to help him feel comfortable. Especially when it comes to his big feet!
Human fish oil is fine. A lot of people use Costco or Walmart brands.
NAIL CONDITIONS IN DOGS
I trim my dogs nails every week. They grow like crazy and I like to keep them very short. Nothing touching the ground, and a good clearance from it. Though I did have one dog who only needed them done every 3 weeks. It may have just had to do w/ differences in gait.
If they look like they're shedding or flaking, it could be because of a fungal infection. That's easily treated with griseofulvin, an anti-fungal med. Fungus infected toenails smell different than normal toenails. Can't remember how to describe it but it is distinctive.You can see them split from both sides and then I guess they break off where the cracks are.
Puff [YF, AKC field line (from competing HT/FT breeder) 62 lbs, dob: 8-'01]
Bess [BF, AKC bench line (from competing show breeder) 55 lbs., 1967-1981] "Poor Bess, the Wonder Dog":
This is what I give to Mocha and Zeus
I just put a little on their food they love it and have nice shiny coats.
Mocha used to really freak when I tried clipping her nails but with lots of treats and going really slowly (it took like 2 weeks before I even tried to do one nail) she does pretty good with the dermmel.
I hope you can find a way to get them better I would have the vet check for a fungal infection like Bob mentioned to othey shouldn't split like that.
Thanks for all of the supplement information. I do feel like they are a little supplement deprived. All I give them are glucosamine (Synovi) supplements for their hips. But being a newer lab owner (just in the last two years) I'm still going through the learning process. All the help I can get is nice! I don't think it is a fungal infection as there is no smell at all. Cooper's nails are very difficult along with his anxiety which makes working with him tough. His claws are so thick and he gets so nervous. I think my best bet is to give him 1/2 of an sedative (like the vet reccomended when I take him in next week) and get him used to the dremmel. I don't think using the clipper is the best idea since they are so thick. I will try to take a picture of them tonight to show what they look like. And I will also update after our vet visit on Thursday of next week! Thanks so much everyone and if anyone has any other ideas I would love to hear.