Clipping your dog’s furry (feathered) paws is generally for hygienic, safety, and aesthetic purpose. It prevents too much dirt from clinging onto the paws’ fur when your dog walks around. Well-trimmed paws also give your dog a better traction when walking on smooth and polished floorings (i.e. granite) or slippery areas in the bathroom and poolside.
Most owners tend to overlook and allow their dog’s furry paws to grow incessantly until the next grooming session some time between two to four months later. It only takes 2 to 3 weeks to grow about half an inch, and that’s enough to cover the whole paw pad.
Think of it this way, would you be able to walk comfortably wearing a pair of shoes where the sole is made of cotton yarn—the material used on a mop head?
Very Important Note:
Do not attempt to clip your dog if you have never handled a clipper before, let alone clipping your dog’s paws now—an area where most dogs do not like to be touched. Remember, home grooming is not without its risks especially for amateurs and if in doubt, always seek professional groomer’s help.
Clipper Blade Tips:
The ideal blade size to use when clipping the paw is no.10 (1.5mm) or no.15 (1.2mm) either Andis or Oster. I use no.15 for this job because I like getting it as close to the skin. For clipper, I much prefer using Andis to Oster as it is lightweight, has “cooler” motor, and durable. As for blades, both are just as efficient as they can be.
Should the blade get warm, stop clipping. Either change blade or take a break.
Steps To Clipping The Furry Paws
Place your dog on a non-slip table or workbench. Lean your dog against your body with his face on the opposite direction of your clipper. Suppose you use your right hand to hold the clipper, your dog’s head will be on your left. So you will have your left forearm to restrain your dog should he be fidgeting. To open up the paw pad, you have to hold the paw firmly with your forefinger and thumb, and gently apply downwards pressure on the sides to spread open the pads for a better clip. Hold the clipper at an angle (as you would be holding a pencil) against the paw while clipping. Do not clip with the blade at a right vertical angle to the paw. The sharp teeth of the blade can punctuate holes into the skin.
Clipping And Scissoring The Furry Feet
Reposition your dog (facing the clipper) when you want to trim the top and side of the paw, and between the toes. If your dog is not used to clipping, you may need some one to restrain your dog while trimming those areas.
If you are not going for a close clip, use a no.4 or no.5 blade or you could use a thinning shear instead of a clipper. The length of feathers on the feet should not be shorter than a quarter of an inch and trim no higher up to the first joint. For illustrations on how to use thinning shear to trim the feet, here’s the site.
Top and side of the paw: Place your thumb a few inches away from the top of the toes and the rest of your fingers below the pastern. Clip it against the hair growth.
Place your thumb a few inches away from the top of the toes and the rest of your fingers below the pastern. Clip it against the hair growth. Between the paw: Place your thumb a little above and between the webbed (apply gentle pressure to spread open the toes to allow the clipper entry) and the rest of your fingers around the paw pad and pastern areas. Use only the side of the blade to clip the fur. Do the same for the other two webbed.
Place your thumb a little above and between the webbed (apply gentle pressure to spread open the toes to allow the clipper entry) and the rest of your fingers around the paw pad and pastern areas. Use only the side of the blade to clip the fur. Do the same for the other two webbed. Use a small blunt-tipped scissors and trim the hairs that extend beyond the outline of the foot. What you want is a tidy appearance and a rounded outline of the foot. On top of that, make sure to give your dog cbd for dogs to relive his stress and anxieties.
I won’t deny it is a tough job clipping furry paws especially if you are new to clipping moving things! It does take a lot of practice and patience. If there is any consolation, I started out working on human heads! I still find it easier to shave heads than to clip dogs who aren’t used to being touched.