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How to Stop a Dog’s Nail from Bleeding – Tips if You Clip a Dog’s Nails too Short

January 09, 2010 By: admin Category: All Sick Dog Blog Posts, Dog Injuries, Dog Nail Clipping, Dog Nail Injuries and Broken Nails, General Dog Health, Home Remedies for Dogs, Pet Products, Stop a Dog's Nail Bleeding, Styptic Powder for Bleeding Nails

Click to Learn More – Kwik Stop Styptic Powder

When clipping a dog’s nails, it’s easy to accidentally cut the dog’s nail too short. Sometimes, the dog will move at an inopportune moment, leading to a bleeding nail. In other cases, dog owners accidentally cut the nail too short, cutting into the quick – the “live” part of the dog’s nail.

When a dog’s nail is clipped too short, it will bleed profusely and it’s difficult to control the bleeding with the normal methods (i.e. applying pressure.) So before clipping a dog’s nails at home, you’ll need to have something on-hand to help stop the nail from bleeding because accidents can and do occur.

How to Stop Bleeding if a Dog’s Nail is Clipped too Short

There are three substances that can be used to stop a dog’s nail from bleeding:

Styptic powder is something every dog or cat owner should have on-hand. This will quickly stop bleeding in a dog’s broken nail or an over-clipped nail. Some styptic powders also have anti-bacterial properties to prevent the dog’s nail from getting infected.

Styptic powder is the first choice – it’s, by far, the most effective method to stop bleeding in a pet’s nail. But there are a couple household items that can be used in a pinch.

Corn starch is the second choice; flour is the third choice.

Dog Nail Injuries – How to Stop the Bleeding

To stop the bleeding, pour a little bit of the styptic powder/corn starch/flour in the palm of your hand. Cup your hand slightly and dip the dog’s bleeding nail into the powder.

If using styptic powder, one or two dips is usually all that’s required; flour and corn starch are a bit less effective and multiple dips are usually required.



Styptic Powder Uses and the Best Brands of Styptic Powder

Notably, styptic powder can also be used on birds in the event of bleeding during beak trimming or in the event of a broken blood feather. Owners can also use styptic powder to stop bleeding that occurs due to minor cuts.

In my experience, the most effective styptic powder brand is Kwik-Stop Styptic Powder (pictured above), available at PetSmart for $26.99. It’s a bit more expensive than other brands, but it’s more effective than the other brands I’ve tried and unlike most other styptic powders, it contains benzocaine for pain relief.

A dog’s broken nail (or clipped-too-short nail) is very painful and limping often results due to the pain (and this makes dog owners like myself feel even more guilty if the pain is due to a nail that was clipped too short!) The benzocaine in Kwik-Stop Styptic Powder reduces the dog’s pain to the point where most don’t even limp.

Click to Learn More – 21st Century Styptic Powder

Remember, you can’t give ASPIRIN® to a dog who is bleeding – ASPIRIN® thins the blood, worsening bleeding! So the pain medication in Kwik-Stop Styptic Powder makes it a valuable tool in this regard.

If you’re looking for another good styptic powder, 21st Century Styptic Powder is a good product (available for $8.99 at PetSmart).

21st Century Styptic Powder is also really effective in stopping the bleeding from a broken or over-clipped nail, along with minor cuts. It’s less expensive than Kwik-Stop because it does not have a pain relieving component. But it’s definitely effective and like Kwik-Stop, it does not have a tendency to clump (many of the cheaper styptic powder brands clump due to moisture in the air, so one day, you’ll open the jar to find that the powder has transformed into a rock! That’s the last thing you need while you’re dog is bleeding!)

Related Articles on Nail Injuries in Dogs and Cats

To learn more about how to prevent infection in a dog’s broken nail, read this related article. The second portion of this article discusses how to clean and treat a dog’s nail injury at home.

Pet owners may also want to learn more about the different types of nail injuries in dogs and cats.

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How to Give a Pill to a Dog Who Bites

January 03, 2010 By: admin Category: All Sick Dog Blog Posts, General Dog Health, Greenies Pill Pockets for Dogs, Pet Medications, Pet Pill Shooters

Learn tips and tricks to give a pill to a dog who bites and nips. (Daniel Andres Forero Photo)

Some dogs will do anything to avoid taking a pill. Some dogs will bite when the owner tries to give a pill. These dogs will often struggle violently and in the process, some dogs will spit out the pill, bringing the pet owner back to square one.

For these resistant dogs, there are a few tricks for giving a pill to the dog.

Giving a Pill to a Dog Who Bites

If your dog bites when you try to give a pill, there are a few solutions that pet owners can try. If possible, get the dog to take the pill voluntarily. If this is not possible, the key is to avoid placing fingers or hands inside the dog’s mouth when giving a dose of medicine.

  • Use a Pet Pill Gun – Also known as a pet pill shooter, pill guns enable the owner to place the pill inside the dog’s mouth without losing a finger. Read this article on The Sick Dog Blog to learn more.
  • Hide the Dog’s Pill in a Treat – Pet owners can get the dog to eat the pill voluntarily by placing it inside a food like cheese or a bit of hot dog. Read this article on The Sick Dog Blog to learn more.
  • Hide the Pet Medication in a Greenies Pill Pocket – Get the dog to take the pill voluntarily by using a Greenies Pill Pocket for Dogs.
  • Use Peanut Butter and a Spoon to Give Pet Medication – Place the pill in peanut butter or cream cheese, then place the dab on the tip of a butter knife (or on the tip of the handle). Open the dogs mouth and place the peanut butter/cream cheese (containing the pill) onto the roof of the dog’s mouth (just behind the dog’s upper front teeth). Using the cutlery will help owners avoid placing a finger inside a nippy dog’s mouth. This method is also effective for dogs who spit out pills.



Notably, when a dog bites an owner, this suggests a very serious underlying behavioral problem. A dog who bites his owner does not view the human as the alpha. So the human must make some immediate changes with the assistance of an experienced dog trainer. The dog owner must begin acting and speaking like an alpha and he must work to reclaim his role as the pack leader. Once the dog owner reclaims his rightful role as the alpha, behaviors like biting will disappear.

Preventing a Struggle When Giving a Pill to a Dog Who Bites

Preventing a struggle is key when trying to give pet medication to a dog who bites. Dog bites occur when the pet becomes agitated and the situation becomes chaotic. So by keeping the dog calm, the owner can maintain control over the situation (and the dog.)

To learn more about how to prevent a dog from struggling when giving pet medication, read The Sick Dog Blog’s article titled Pet Medication Tips – How to Prevent a Struggle When Giving a Pill to a Dog.

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