Why do I need to clip my dog's nails? What happens if I never clip my dogs nails, will they naturally stay short? It is a large breed.

1 Answer 1


This heavily depends on the dog's breed and activities.

For most dogs, it's enough to trim the dewclaw (i.e. the thumb nails on the front legs) in case they get too long. This is mainly to avoid the dog hurting itself by getting stuck with it for example.

Some people opt for a minor surgical operation to get them removed, but I wouldn't recommend it. Clipping them once every few months takes literally minutes and just some practice (special pliers for this are rather cheap and available at most pet stores). If you take your dog to a groomer and are unsure about this, just let them look after these as well. It should hardly make any difference regarding prices.

The remaining nails usually shouldn't need any special attention and will wear naturally just by having the dog walk and run around on harder surfaces such as rock, dirt, wood or concrete.

You can clip their tips in case the dog stays inside most of the day and/or doesn't have opportunities to wear them just by playing or running around (and they're getting too sharp/long).

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