A chihuahua looks curiously up at a pair of dog nail clippers.

We’ve talked extensively about nail trimming on our blog. Nail trims are the most common type of grooming out there, especially for short hairs. If you plan to groom your dog at home, it’s important to have access to the best nail trimming tools for chihuahuas.

Before I started All Things Chihuahua, I was a dog groomer. These are my favorite tools and why I liked them. (Affiliate links are part of this post. If you do decide to purchase one of these products, please consider doing so through one of our links. It costs nothing extra for you, but helps us grow.)

Dremel 7700

I almost never actually clip my dog’s nails. Nail clippers do have the benefit of being quieter, but they can’t cut as precisely as a Dremel can, and often squeeze the nail. This means even if you don’t make your dog bleed, you may still cause them pain.

A Dremel helps you avoid that. My favorite Dremel for nail trimming is the Dremel 7700. It’s upright, lasts forever, and is easy to find replacement parts for. Don’t forget to pick up some extra sanding sleeves, as these can wear out.

If you decide to find a different grinder, avoid getting the kind that is wired. Nothing makes cutting nails more difficult than being tied to the wall. (Amazon)

Kitten Clippers

If you know your dog absolutely won’t stand for a Dremel, kitten clippers are the easiest for tiny dog nails. The small size makes it easier to see where you are clipping, so it’s hard to make mistakes. Although these are much more manageable, they don’t have the guard like bigger dog clippers, which help stop you from taking too large of a cut.

I personally don’t like the guard since it obscures my vision of the cut I’m about to do, but for those who are worried about quicking their dog, the guard may help you avoid quicking your pup. (Amazon/Chewy)

Kwik Stop

Kwik Stop is the golden standard in most grooming salons and veterinary clinics. Kwik stop is a yellowish powder that when applied to a bleeding nail, helps stop the bleeding quickly. The powder not only stops bleeding, but also has ingredients to sanitize the wound and block pain.

This is a great resource to have on hand even if you don’t plan to cut your dog’s nails, because it can be used on broken nails and minor cuts as well. We pop this in our first-aid kit, even though the doggy canine first aid kit we bought didn’t come with it. (Amazon/Chewy)

Miller Forge Nail Clippers

Some dogs dislike clippers because they squeeze the nail too much, but also dislike the sound of the Dremel. The red handled Miller Forge nail clippers cut through tough nails like butter, making it more comfortable for your pet while clipping.

For small dogs this comes at the price of being a little awkward. These are large dog nail clippers, so it can be hard to wiggle those clippers between their tiny toes. (Amazon/Chewy)

A Licky Mat

There is no reason to make things more difficult for nail trims than they have to be. If your dog is comfortable enough to take treats while getting their nails clipped, a licky mat with some meat flavored baby food on it can keep them busy while you do their nails.

I am a big fan of motivating dogs to be good, and this is one of the motivators I use regularly. (Amazon/Chewy)

Tools for Difficult Dogs

Some dogs love having their nails done. Some dogs hate it. If your dog is in Camp Hate, a licky mat probably isn’t going to convince them to let you cut their nails. Here are a couple of tools I have found useful for cutting difficult dog nails, without harming the dog or causing undue stress.

Grooming Hammock

My dogs are great for nails, but in the past I’ve worked with dogs who are very difficult. A grooming hammock makes dealing with wiggly, angry dogs easier. Grooming hammocks are essentially a hammock with holes for your dog’s legs to go through. The dog is than hung up in the hammock on something sturdy. (You’ll have to figure that part out yourself.

When dogs are unable to see what you are doing and can’t push off anything to escape, they tend to relax and just let you do the work. (Amazon/Chewy)

 Scratch Board

Sometimes clipping nails without sedation is impossible. It can take months or even years to change a dog’s feelings about being groomed, but in the meantime, those nails still need cut. If you’ve tried everything and your dog just won’t let you do it, the scratch board is your answer.

Scratch boards let your dog do their own nails. It’s easy to teach dogs how to do it, without ever having to touch their body at all. One of our dog’s, Tank, is good with nails but not the brightest bulb. We taught him to do his nails on both front feet and back to make sure any dog can do it.

If he managed it, your dog totally can. Here’s our instructions on how to get started.

As far as the scratch board, we found out through trial and error that a curved scratch board gets the side nails better, and the larger it is the easier for your dog to target it. This one is a great example of a good scratch board.

These are great tools for dogs. If you are ready to start cutting your dog’s nails at home, a good dremel or nail clipper is essential. You may or may not need these other items.

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By Andrea

Andrea is a dedicated dog mom of three chihuahuas. She has over a decade of experience as a dog groomer, chihuahua owner, and more recently as a dog trainer. She loves all things canine, particularly chihuahuas.

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