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Discussion Starter #1
I'm going to have to give her a trim and I'm not sure how to go about it. She's still fearful about everything and I'm just getting to the point that she will let me handle her feet. She will let me hold her foot in my hands, but anything more than that still sends her into a panic. Plus, when she is nervous, you couldn't treat her with Filet Mignon - she's just not interested.
how do I keep her calm while I try to do this? I had been hoping to have advanced far enough to at least do one nail by now
 

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You have to build up to it slowly. I would start with handling her feet and treating her (no clippers). Then build up to touching her nails while you have the clippers (without clipping) and treat her. Eventually you'll be able to clip and treat. That's what worked for Mayzie anyway and before I did this, she would not tolerate nail clipping at all.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
well, since Oct we have managed to build up to touching her feet. if you try to even touch the pads she panics. and if you dare to put any pressure (even a light touch at top and bottom) it takes over an hour before she will even come near you again.
sadly, that is an improvement over her freaking out if you touched her at all.....
 

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Discussion Starter #4
want to add this in.. having someone help me won't work either. She panics if more than one person is "surrounding" her. She stays on the outer edge of a crowd, the better to make a quick get away....
 

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Hmmm did anything happen that caused her to be this way? A lot of folks on here find using the dremel is easier on the dog than clipping - would she tolerate that? I haven't tried it but some dogs supposely hate clipping but don't mind the dremel...
 

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Discussion Starter #6
until we got her in Oct she had lived her entire life in a kennel. Had only met the immediate family of the woman who owned her. was only ever handled by that woman.

so we have been working really hard to get her over her issues. I just don't know how to manage to clip her nails without undoing the progress that we have made so far.
 

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She was a kennel dog I think? Just not used to anything people-ish.

Do you have a gentle vet? One that doesn't force things? If you do (and I know this is also stressful) I would take her in and have it done there. I couldn't cut Nina's at first (she would bite me-lol) so the first time, they restrained her at the vet office and they got bitten, the next time I had another vet try and he gently worked with her while I held her mouth. She went there and to a groomer that she loved for her nail trims until she passed, it was just easier.

I have Anna who is terrified, I have had to leash her in the house, take her outside (cuz she poops) and clip there, then we go for a ride as a reward. She's gotten to the point where I can do them indoors, but nail clipping doesn't happen as often with Anna as with the others because it stresses her out.

Mariele, also terrified of nail clipping, has it done at the vet and occasionally I can do it if I have help and elevate her (put her on a bookshelf) so that basically that terrifies her more.


So you can see I've had to do trial and error until I found methods that work. For her, if you have that kind of vet it really takes the win-lose aspect out of it, which is nice. I do know that the more force I've used on any of them, the worse it is, but a pro allows you to use your head better (as long as they use theirs).
 

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Discussion Starter #8
our vet is awesome.. I just wanted to avoid the hold her down method if possible.

she is pretty attached to my 14 year old. don't know if it would be possible to have her hold her head and then clip her nails. we do have a muzzle that we bought just in case....
 

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My second vet didn't hold her down, that's what I am saying. The first one did, then the next one did it a whole different way. Sidling up next to her like a crab, holding her leg, me holding her head...all very gentle and very slow. It must have taken 20 minutes the first time he did her nails, each time faster (unless she was in a mood)!

I would try it at home with your 14 year old if you can clip a nail but see it's not going well, stop and try the vet (talking to them first of course of no restraint). If you can't clip any, give what you were doing a name and say good leg or whatever, so the act of touching her leg/foot is rewarded with verbal praise. I always make sure with them, when I fail to succeed (and that's okay) that we make whatever we did do a success.
 

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Alot of it is demeanor. I had a vet (not my vet) cut Ava's nails and it was very traumatic. Took her and 3 vet tech's to get the job done.

My vet...sits on the floor and I sit with him...and we chat away while he's examining Ava. I remember asking him...if he would cut her nails...and he said...I already did. I was stunned. Neither I nor Ava even realized he did it. He wasn't focusing on her...it was so casual ...I think that is the key.....

My vet is the best Jean!
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Well, that was easy

she just laid with her head in B's lap while I cut her nails. took less time than it does to do Rayden's. All she needed was a snip of the tip since her's have always been naturally short from living outside.

As soon as I finished she got some cheese, which is her favorite treat.
 

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Re: Well, that was easy

I am so happy for you


(from the owner of one scaredy girl to another)
 
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