Attending to the nails of your Shih Tzu is quite an easy task. However many owners usually take their pet to the grooming team to get the nails done as they think they cannot do it themselves. The process is quite simple though. The vital thing here is that you should have a well behaved dog and you should have a basic awareness of the anatomy of the canine nail. It is a fact that you are the best person to trim the nails of your Shih Tzu because after all you are the person your Shih Tzu trusts the most. So if you want to save some precious money and save the effort to visit the groomer, then you should know these points for a hassle free nail trimming session.
The best time to trim your dog’s nails is right after the bath as the nails will be soaked in water and will be soft. Take the paw of your dog in your hand and talk in a soothing tone to it so that the dog does not panic and remain relaxed. Never grab the nails of the dog suddenly and start to trim. Not only your dog can get nervous and bite you but you may cause a wound on its nailbed because of the sudden jerky movements. When both of you are relaxed then trim the nail in a swift but smooth motion.
Trim the nails above the pulp- you can easily see the blood supply in a bright light. The pulp is usually found inside the nail and is dark reddish in color. If you hit this structure accidentally then there will be bleeding. It may not be an emergency situation but you can be pretty sure that you dog will experience pain. Just apply a clean piece of cotton over the bleeding and keep the pressure for 2-3 minutes.
After you trim the nails use a file or an emery boar to work on the pointed and jagged edges. Normally you should trim the nails of your dog every 4 -5 weeks, though it will depend on its activity- like scratching himself, floor or cement scratching or digging. You should also check if the dog is facing difficulty to walk due to the nails. Large and overgrown nails will cause infection as fungal and bacterial impurities will get in and get infested easily due to the blood supply in the nail.