Dogs spend half of their lives on their paws and nails! As such, maintaining good nail health is essential for overall health and happiness. Damaged nails can make it extremely uncomfortable for your canine to go on walkies and enjoy other daily activities. Besides, dogs’ broken nails tend to bleed excessively. The open wound is prone to infection and can lead to other health complications. Therefore, although dog broken nails might not sound like a big deal, you must work hard to avoid them. In this article we run through the causes, symptoms, and treatment of broken nails.
Causes of Broken NailsDogs break their nails for all kinds of reasons. They might snag overgrown nails on the carpet when playing, or land with a lot of force when running and jumping. Broken nails also tend to be more problematic in older dogs with brittle nails. Or perhaps your dog’s nail split during trimming and now their quick is exposed. Here is a look at these reasons in more detail.
Overgrown nailsLike human nails, dog nails grow continuously at a very slow rate. They are often worn down through running and walking, and regular nail grooming helps to keep them at a good length. However, overgrown nails are common if you don’t keep on top of trimming. Longer nails are much more prone to snagging and catching on surfaces. If your dog ripped its nail off when playing, there is a good chance its nails were too long.
Brittle nailsAs dogs get older, their nails become drier and more brittle. Some skin diseases such as lupoid onychodystrophy can also cause dry, brittle nails. Likewise, nutritional deficiencies can inhibit proper nail formation and cause brittleness. Regardless of the cause, brittle nails are more prone to breakages. This can cause dogs’ nails to split frequently. If you’re dealing with constantly broken dog nails, this is a likely explanation.
Trimming accidentsEstablishing a Nail trimming routine is a must for any pet owner. Keeping your dog’s nails short and trim can help avoid breakages caused by overgrown nails. However, trimming accidents can happen. Unintentionally cutting too far down means the dog's nail quick is exposed and your canine’s nails will start bleeding. We recommend using a dog nail grinder instead of regular nail clippers. A grinder gives you more control over the trimming process and can help avoid unnecessary broken nails.
Dog Broken Nail SymptomsMinor broken nails and snags aren’t a major cause for concern. However, more serious breaks that happen nearer to the base of the nail won’t stop bleeding. Bleeding from the nail is the most obvious sign that your dog has injured itself. Other symptoms of broken dog nails include:
- Visible breaks or cracks in the nail
- Excessive licking and chewing of the paw
- Limping and whining in pain
- Swelling and other signs of localized inflammation
- Dog nail quick exposed