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Discussion Starter #1
I took Riley for a vet visit a couple weeks ago and thought we'd try to get his nails clipped while we were there. (He has serious issues with nail trimming.) There were three of us - the vet, a tech and myself - and we couldn't do it. He went into a total panic and was so stressed that we decided not to push it. She suggested making another appointment and we'd do a reversible sedation; knock him out, clip his nails and wake him up.
My hands were a little too full at the time and I didn't think to ask exactly what she planned to use, but I'm guessing (from what some other people have told me) that it would probably be Domitor.

Do any of you know anything, or have any experience with this? I'm really hesitant to do it. I don't like the idea of sedating him unless it's an absolute LAST resort.

And what REALLY put me off is the fact that she didn't mention doing any bloodwork prior to the sedation. Riley's never had a full blood workup and sure, he appears to be healthy, but how can you know for sure without running the bloodwork?
Would that be as risky and irresponsible as it seems to me? Or am I being paranoid and overly-cautious?

I called another vet to see if his nail issues are something they'd be willing to deal with and the woman I spoke to said that if a vet suggested sedation without bloodwork, she'd run like he[ck]. She said they do not do that and would be more than happy to give his nails a try and see if they can get them done. She wants me to bring him in, as many times as I possibly can, before the actual appointment and wants me to bring some hot dog or chicken or something with me. She wants him to see the exam room, meet the vet, get all kinds of attention and great treats, and then leave. They'd like to start building a foundation with him before they actually DO anything. (Not sure that will help with Riley, but I figure it certainly can't hurt.)

I'm really leaning towards trying this approach first. The more I think about it, the more my gut is telling me to avoid the sedation. It's also telling me that I just lost faith in my current vet.

What would you think about it?
 

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I have seen domitor/antisedan used many times without trouble. But it still scares the bejesus out of me:).
They are very quiet, shallow breathing...... just makes me nervous.
What about propofol if it is an absolute neccessity?

Best thing is to start working on touching paws, holding paws, holding a nail, etc. Very slowly work up to trimming one nail. Dremel might be another option as that does not pinch the nail, and virtually guarantees no quicking.
 

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I'll have to do some checking on the propofol - I'm not familiar with that, either. She did mention that she wants him completely unaware of what's going on, so something like Ace would be out.

It just concerns me that she wouldn't have suggested pre-sedation bloodwork. :confused:

We've been working on his nails here at home for about a year now. We work on it virtually every single day - might have missed a couple days during our move - but other than that, we've been diligent. We're making a little bit of progress, but not enough to have kept up with them and now they're long and really need a good trimming.
He's so afraid of it that, in all this time, we've only made a little progress. I can handle his feet, touch his nails... I can even trim the hair on his feet once in a while... but the minute he sees or feels clippers, look out!

I do want to try a dremel, but we need to make more progress with being able to trim the hair on his feet, first. He has those Golden "grinch feet" and I'm afraid that long hair might get wound up in the dremel.
 

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Do any of you know anything, or have any experience with this?
We have had to use it with my last dog for different things but I wouldn't feel comfortable using it to get his nails trimmed. Plus you would have to use it so often to keep them trimmed :(

What about Acepromazine, have you ever tried it?

Heidi wouldn't let anyone near her ears and we had to remove sutures after surgery and I didn't want her sedated all the time with the Domitor. Maybe you could ask the vet if that would be an option.

Acepromazine

Michaela
 

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Discussion Starter #5
We have had to use it with my last dog for different things but I wouldn't feel comfortable using it to get his nails trimmed. Plus you would have to use it so often to keep them trimmed :(

What about Acepromazine, have you ever tried it?

Heidi wouldn't let anyone near her ears and we had to remove sutures after surgery and I didn't want her sedated all the time with the Domitor. Maybe you could ask the vet if that would be an option.

Acepromazine

Michaela
I did ask her about Ace, because I know someone else who uses that for nail trimmings, and she said 'absolutely not.'

She said the problem with Ace is that it can actually make a dog more hyper-aware of what's happening, they just can't respond, physically. She feels that it could really backfire with Riley and mess him up even worse.

I just hate to think about how badly our previous vet techs must have hurt him to make him this terrified of having his nails done. (I can't let myself think about it, since there's nothing I can do that won't land me in jail.)
 

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Ace is like making them drunk.... and you never know if they will be a mean drunk or a funny one!
Few things as dangerous (and upsetting to the dog) as trying to hold down a mean, drunk, terrified, dog.

Propofol is an anesthetic, not sedative. They bounce back really well as long as they have body fat. Greyhounds etc. don't do as well if I remember correctly.
 

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I did ask her about Ace, because I know someone else who uses that for nail trimmings, and she said 'absolutely not.'
I posted about the Ace before I saw your post...sorry. I hope you can figure out a solution for your boy :)

Michaela
 

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I had Gianna sedated to get her rear shaved when we were trying to get rid of her horrible hotspots. I stayed with her the entire time. They came in and gave her a shot, I asked how long it takes to take effect, and they said "not long". I pet her and talked soothingly to her as she began to get drowsy. I helped her lay down and she closed her eyes. I continued petting her as the vet and tech shaved, cleaned, and doctored the hotpots. She breathed slow, jsut a little slower than when she sleeps, but not scarily so. After we were done, another shot was given and I pet her and talked to her as she woke up. She was a little out of it but able to walk out of there slowly.

I asked for her to be out during this procedure because of how traumatized she got at the vet before when we tried to shave the area without anything. It made brushing or even touchign her rear a anxious thing. I didn't want any more trauma associated with it. So anywho that is my experience. Only you can decide what you feel is right for your dog.
 

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I had Gianna sedated to get her rear shaved when we were trying to get rid of her horrible hotspots. I stayed with her the entire time. They came in and gave her a shot, I asked how long it takes to take effect, and they said "not long". I pet her and talked soothingly to her as she began to get drowsy. I helped her lay down and she closed her eyes. I continued petting her as the vet and tech shaved, cleaned, and doctored the hotpots. She breathed slow, jsut a little slower than when she sleeps, but not scarily so. After we were done, another shot was given and I pet her and talked to her as she woke up. She was a little out of it but able to walk out of there slowly.

I asked for her to be out during this procedure because of how traumatized she got at the vet before when we tried to shave the area without anything. It made brushing or even touchign her rear a anxious thing. I didn't want any more trauma associated with it. So anywho that is my experience. Only you can decide what you feel is right for your dog.
I do like the fact that it would just completely remove the stress for him. He really panics and I just hate to see him going through that.

Did they do bloodwork ahead of time, or did they just do the sedation without it?

Heidigsd said:
I hope you can figure out a solution for your boy :)
Yeah, me too! I wish he'd just get over it and stop being such a neurotic little nutball, but I don't see that happening. :crazy:
 

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I am just know starting to try to dremel Dakota nails... they need it bad. But so far I am getting him comfortable with everything and clicking and treats for small stuff like me touching the turned off dremel to his nails, adn me holding his toes....so far so good. Natalie, on the board gave me a link to a website that tell you step by step how to introduce it and how to actually dremel. She has dobbies, but I know she shaid for dogs with long hair, to use stocking with a little hole for the nail to poke out of....that way the nail is isolated and your pup is beautiful. lol
 

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Ace is like making them drunk.... and you never know if they will be a mean drunk or a funny one!
Few things as dangerous (and upsetting to the dog) as trying to hold down a mean, drunk, terrified, dog.

Propofol is an anesthetic, not sedative. They bounce back really well as long as they have body fat. Greyhounds etc. don't do as well if I remember correctly.
I had a horse that had an injury to his rear hoof. It required 2 months of treatment some of it was painful to the horse. After the first two weeks the horse wouldn't allow me to touch his hoof - refused to pick up his leg. The vet gave me some Ace to give him to take the edge off. As this horse was 16'2 but always required VERY LITTLE sedation, we gave half of the requested amount. Allowed him ample time for the medication to work, and as I picked up his rear leg, he promptly fell over. And laid there. A very happy drunk indeed. Hubby swore he was grinning.
 

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I wouldn't use Ace, (what if your dog is an mdr1 dog and you don't know it? ace could kill them),, I'd opt for propofol.
 

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Totally out of left field here, but does your neighborhood have sidewalks? I've never had to trim my dogs' nails because they walk several miles a day on sidewalks and it keeps them worn down.
 

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I am just know starting to try to dremel Dakota nails... they need it bad. But so far I am getting him comfortable with everything and clicking and treats for small stuff like me touching the turned off dremel to his nails, adn me holding his toes....so far so good. Natalie, on the board gave me a link to a website that tell you step by step how to introduce it and how to actually dremel. She has dobbies, but I know she shaid for dogs with long hair, to use stocking with a little hole for the nail to poke out of....that way the nail is isolated and your pup is beautiful. lol
We've been following a step-by-step desensitization program that was given to me by a trainer. We've never tried it with a clicker, though. That might just be something to think about. I think that might improve our timing and make it easier to mark any sign of relaxation (or at least tolerance!) He gets treats for it now, but I think our timing might be off just enough that he doesn't really understand why he's getting the reward. I know I've caught myself moving just a second too slow, to where he ends up getting the treat just as he's about to pull his foot away. So yeah, a clicker is an interesting thought. Thanks!

And using a stocking is a fantastic idea... and one I've never thought of!

Emoore said:
Totally out of left field here, but does your neighborhood have sidewalks? I've never had to trim my dogs' nails because they walk several miles a day on sidewalks and it keeps them worn down.
Yes, we do have sidewalks and they do help. A lot! But they started getting a little long again over the winter, when the sidewalks are often snow-covered and they got ahead of us. My being able to take a sliver here and a sliver there (which is all I can do without losing my hand) wasn't enough to keep up with them. So they're in desperate need of a good trim, now.
 

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Kaiser is an absolute idiot about getting his nails done. He's horrible. Our old vet told us not to bring him back there again for his nails because he turns into a monster - and he's never been hurt, quicked or anything during nail trims!!

I've tried desensitizing him, I've tried the dremel and countless other things, but have only been able to get one or two nails done in a long period of time - like weeks.

We've since changed vets and "luckily" he's needed to be anesthetized twice within the past year for two different procedures, so the vet trimmed them down as short as possible, but he's due for another trim. During the summer he keeps them filed down by getting into and out of the pool on the concrete steps. I walk him everyday on the sidewalk and the middle two nails are ok, but the two side nails are pretty long.

We're taking him in next week and are trying Acepromozine ahead of time. We've used it before prior to his surgeries and it makes him mellow. If it doesn't work for his nails he will likely have to be heavily sedated or anesthetized again, which I hate doing but don't have much choice!

Glad to hear there is another nail demon out there! ;)
 

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I've had Onyx aced a few times, she is fear aggressive and it didn't ramp it up,but did relax her enough to have blood drawn and ears swabbed. It took her a really long time to come off it, and the first time she didn't feel it til we were in the clinic exam room(2 hrs dosed beforehand). I have to ace her, unfortunately.
Karlo had the reverse sedation when he had a growth removed from under his tongue. It went fine and I picked him up within a couple hours of the procedure. He had no signs of groggyness, the only thing that was quirky was when I brought him to the vet no snow on the ground, brought him out and two inches had fallen~he'd never seen snow!
So I bet his mind was reeling, then he wouldn't go potty outside, came home and he pee'd right by the door within a couple minutes. He never had an accident in the house since he was 9 weeks old!
Another option on the nail trim would be get the dog use to a muzzle beforehand and then muzzle during the trim-time.
 

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This type of sedation is used frequently, also for emergency surgeries when the dog has eaten before and the 'common' sedation cannot be used. Most of the time the dog comes out of it OK. Like with any sedation, the dog can have an adverse reaction or allergic reaction and not come out of it. This can happen to a healthy animal (or human for that matter) as well, even if the bloodwork and liver values are normal. Bloodwork will not predict a sensitivity reaction. Some years ago someone posted here about losing a young, healthy dog after a minor surgery. They were not able to wake him up. It is very rare but not impossible.
 

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Call around different vet offices, animal places and ask for groomer recommendations. Then call and interview the groomers. The groomer I would take Nina to could do any of my dogs' I've taken to her without any issues, like magic! Nina at the vet would take about 10 minutes - no restraint - that made it worse. It was just chatting and clip, chatting and clip. The groomer however, had them done in seconds. I don't know for Nina if it was being on the table with the noose around her neck or what, but this groomer can clip nails!
 

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Another option on the nail trim would be get the dog use to a muzzle beforehand and then muzzle during the trim-time.
We have used a muzzle before, even here at home. It worked great the first time. Second time, not so much. I mean, he obviously can't bite me (which is a really nice benefit) but he won't hold still and neither mom nor I can hold him. He's too big, too strong and I swear this dog moves as if he has no bones. I've never had a dog as "slippery" as this guy is!
At the vet, he's muzzled. No question about it. I'll put it on him even if they're just drawing blood. He's okay with that, but if their hand would get a little too close to his foot, he'd nail them. No point in taking the chance.

RebelGSD said:
This type of sedation is used frequently, also for emergency surgeries when the dog has eaten before and the 'common' sedation cannot be used. Most of the time the dog comes out of it OK. Like with any sedation, the dog can have an adverse reaction or allergic reaction and not come out of it. This can happen to a healthy animal (or human for that matter) as well, even if the bloodwork and liver values are normal. Bloodwork will not predict a sensitivity reaction. Some years ago someone posted here about losing a young, healthy dog after a minor surgery. They were not able to wake him up. It is very rare but not impossible.
No, that's true - it won't predict a bad reaction. That's always a roll of the dice. But I'm still stuck on the fact that she didn't suggest checking his liver and kidney values ahead of time. I've always thought that was a standard precaution. Especially in Riley's case, since he's never had bloodwork done. I don't know, maybe I'm just being paranoid?

JeanKBBMMMAAN said:
Call around different vet offices, animal places and ask for groomer recommendations. Then call and interview the groomers. The groomer I would take Nina to could do any of my dogs' I've taken to her without any issues, like magic! Nina at the vet would take about 10 minutes - no restraint - that made it worse. It was just chatting and clip, chatting and clip. The groomer however, had them done in seconds. I don't know for Nina if it was being on the table with the noose around her neck or what, but this groomer can clip nails!
I really think I'd be more comfortable going that route. I'm going to continue working on it here at home, but I'd like to find a groomer that can handle him in case they need a good trim here and there, if our progress continues to be slow and we can't keep up with them.
He's only 2 1/2, so the thought of sedating him once or twice a year, every year, bothers me. I don't know about the longterm effects of that, and it just doesn't seem like a viable option. Not at this point, anyway. It may come down to that if I just can't find anyone who can do it. But I think I'd rather try every vet and every groomer within driving distance before going with sedation.
I know the vet's office that I'm taking him to next week has a groomer who's been at it for 30 years. She's probably dealt with some attitudes in that amount of time, so she might be a good place to start.
 
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