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Hi, I’m not a groomer but I’m a licensed cosmetologist with a hatred for humans and a love for animals. I have a basset hound that I rescued and she shakes and screams when I try to trim her nails. She’s terrified of strangers, like she will NOT deal with strangers, so I can’t take her to a groomer. Is there a way I can trim her nails at home? Most of her nails are black so it scares me and there have been times before where I guess I’ve gotten to close to the part of the nail that hurts and the noise she has made makes me tear up just thinking about it. I have both nail clippers and the electric nail grinder. I’ve looked at hammocks on Amazon but they’re all designed to hang from the shower curtain rod and she’s way too heavy for that. Please let me know if there’s a solution!
 

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Cat-dog, GSD spayed female and Tornado-dog, JRT mix, neutered male
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Talk to your vet. They can prescribe a sedative for when you clip her nails.
 

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While sedative to get going is a good idea, you still need to give training a try.

The object in training is teaching the dog to allow you to handle her feet. Try making it an incremental game (tiny increments) using a clicker. The end game is to allow you to hold any foot for a period of time and to never have a struggle. In some cases the dog may even offer you a foot if the training goes well.

After holding feet is easy I desensitize the dog to the Dremel and the sounds it makes using positive association with food. I do not handle feet with the Dremel running until the dog has that positive association.

Then I put the two together.

The process takes time and patience.

When an animal allows you to handle it's feet it gives up control and requires that the animal completely trusts you.

I use the same calm, incremental formula teaching a horse to give up it's foot for cleaning, trimming and shoeing. Force absolutely does not work with a 1200 (or more) pound animal. Cooperation is all that works. That is the goal regardless of the species.
 
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