How To Find The Quick On Black Dog Nails (Best Guide)

Following guides on the internet is easy enough when they used white nails with pink quicks that are easily identified, but what do you do if your dog has black nails?

Will will show you How To Find The Quick On Black Dog Nails. Continue Reading to learn more

What Is A Quick?

The quick is the soft cuticle in the center of the nail that is surrounded by the hard outer shell.

The quick has nerves and blood vessels inside it because it is used to supply blood to the nail bed which can bleed and be painful if cut with nail trimmers, this is why it is important that you avoid it when you are trimming your dog’s nails.

If you do not trim your dog’s nails frequently, and they are not being worn down naturally by pavements and roads, then the quick can grow quite long within the nail which leaves you a lot less room to trim, and thus more likely that the quick will be cut accidentally.

If this is the case, it can either bleed just a drop or will bleed enough to need quick powder to be applied which is specially designed to stop the bleeding.

If you suspect that your dog’s nails have gotten too long and the quick is almost at the tip of their nail, then you will need to take them to the groomer or vet. They will have the experience and tools that will allow them to cut to the quick as close as possible without cutting it.

Once you get on top of trimming the nails, the quick should receive and will make it much easier for them to be trimmed in the future.

How To Find The Quick On Black Dog Nails

With light-colored dogs, the quick is relatively easy to see as the nail is white, and the quick has a pinkish color, but on black dogs, it is impossible to see it all together.

The secret to finding the quick in black dog nails is to first find what is called the ‘pulp’.

The pulp is the soft tissue that is located just in front of the quick and can be identified in black nails as it is a slightly darker shade. Make lots of little cuts at a 45-degree angle until you reach the pulp.

Within seven days, the quick should have reseeded enough to allow you to trim the nails more.

Another trick you can try is to look at the bottom of the nail to figure out how deep into the nail bed you are trimming.

You should be able to see a small oval shape in the center of the nail bed. Keep an eye on this because when you get closer to the quick, the oval will get larger until it is almost the same width as the nail, use this a sign to stop trimming as you will hit the quick soon.

What To Use To Trim Dog Nails

clipping dog nails

Trimming your dog’s nails is very important, and it is important that it is introduced to them as a puppy if you are able to.

Being used to their feet being handled will make it much easier for their nails to be clipped in the future.

There are a few different tools that you can use to trim your dog’s nails that will suit individual needs.

Whatever you do, do not use things such as normal scissors or human nail clippers because they are not designed for dog nails which can cause them to tear, and the nails will not be cut at the correct angle.

Instead, you can use traditional dog nail clippers which are a popular choice because they are very affordable and can be found at most if not all pet stores.

There are two different types of dog nail clippers which are the guillotine-style nail clippers and scissor-style nail clippers.

The scissor-style nail clippers are said to be easier to use than the guillotine-style nail clippers especially if you have a dog with large, thick nails.

However, the guillotine-style nail clippers have a longer shelf life as they stay sharper for longer, allowing for a cleaner, more accurate cut.

If you think that your dog’s nail clippers have gotten dull, you should stop using them straight away because they can crush the nail instead of cut it which causes pain, discomfort, and can even lead to infection and bleeding.

If you have a small dog with delicate nails, you should use a different tool such as a Dremel-type dog nail trimmer.

This is a relatively new device but has earned its place on the market as it works well for small dogs and those who are nervous about traditional nail clippers.

The tool consists of a small rotating file that grinds down the nail instead of cutting straight through it. You can get better control when using it and decreases the risk of cutting through the quick.

For this reason, if you have a dog with black nails, using this Dremel-type dog nail trimmer might be best.

It also eliminates the need to file down the sharp edges after the dog’s nails have been cut as they will already be smooth and rounded.

As with the other tools, there are some disadvantages that come with the Dremel tool as it is more expensive than traditional dog nail clippers and some dogs might not react well to the sensation of the vibration on their nails.

Some of these Dremel tools will emit a noise that will also scare some sensitive dogs but with plenty of treats, positive reinforcement, and patience, then they should adjust to it.

As mentioned earlier, sometimes the quick is accidentally cut and can start to bleed quite a lot.

Having some styptic powder or corn starch handy will work wonders for stopping the bleeding just by applying some of it onto the tip of the nail.

If the cut was particularly nasty and your dog is showing signs of pain and the wound is very exposed, then twice a day you should wash and disinfect the sore nail for about a week.

Bandaging the injury will also help prevent infection and stop bleeding.

Why Do You Need to Trim Dog Nails?

Dogs’ nails grow continuously so if they are not trimmed regularly, they can end up curling into their paw pads and causing a lot of pain.

Even before it gets to that point, having nails that are longer than they should be can make dogs walk on their paws incorrectly, causing joint problems all the way up the leg.

Having nails that are too long can also cause them to splinter and break which is very sore and difficult to walk on.

Walking on surfaces such as hardwood floors with nails that are too long will make your dog much more cautious as they will not be able to get proper traction.

Dogs’ nails can also be trimmed down naturally by covering a lot of distance on roads and pavements as they file them down over time.

However, if your dog spends most of its time on carpets and grass then you will need to trim its nails to prevent issues.

Having long, sharp nails can lead to a greater increase in injuries, especially if the dog is energetic and boisterous as they tend to jump all over people if they have not been trained otherwise.

Sharp claws and skin is not a good combination and if you have a young child, it can lead to some nasty scratches.

Signs You Need to Trim Your Dog’s Nails

clipping dog nails

It is advised by professionals to trim your dog’s nails once a month, but it’s worth knowing other indicators that they are due a trim.

Visually, you should be able to see the nail clearly, but it should not extend past the paw. If you feel that you are getting scratched every time your dog puts their paw on you, its nails are too long.

You may also notice that your dog is licking and biting its paws a lot, this could be a sign that the nails have been pushing on their nail beds as they walk.

If this is the case, it is common to see redness and irritation around the nails beds as well.

As your dog walks on hard surfaces, hearing their nails clack loudly against the floor is another sign that they are too long.

Hearing the nails touch the floor sometimes is normal but if you hear the nails hit every time they step, it means that they are taking on a lot of pressure.

In more extreme cases, a dog may limp in pain or discomfort when the nails are too long, and they can even curl up and dig into their paw pads, sometimes breaking the skin, but this is usually evident in cases of neglect.

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Trimming your dog’s nails is very important, especially now that dogs are less wild and not walking on as many rough surfaces for hours a day as they used to.

It makes them comfortable, and much less dangerous as long nails can lead to nasty scratches even when they don’t mean to.

There are a few things that you can do to help you locate the quick in a dog with black nails.

One of these tricks is to use a dermal dog nail trimmer which will gradually trim the nail instead of cutting it all at once, giving you more control.

This will also cause less damage to the quick if you do come into contact with it because your dog will make it clear that it’s getting uncomfortable.

The other thing to try is to use the shape of the nail to gauge how close you are getting to the quick, keep an eye on the oval shape of the nail bed and if it reaches the same width of the nail, stop because this means you are almost at the quick.

Finally, remember that the pulp is the tissue that comes just before the quick and is identified by being a slightly darker shade than the rest of the nail.

When you get to the pulp, it means you are almost at the quick, and you should put down the nail clippers before you hurt your dog.

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