To take care of the pet rabbit’s nails, it is very important to periodically trim them or offer the pet the opportunity to dig into the ground.
Animals that live in captivity with us and have no way to dig into the ground or grass can suffer from nail problems, especially rabbits. Therefore, the masters will have to cut them. In this article, we will give you some tips for trimming your rabbit’s nails the right way.
When to cut rabbit nails?
If your pet lives in an apartment in the city and doesn’t go out to the park or garden, you will probably need to cut their nails yourself, or get help from a professional. This will prevent them from hurting themselves, walking the wrong way or scratching other family members, both animals and people.
Rabbits have four nails on their hind legs, and in addition, on the front of the legs they have a spur, which is located on the inside of the limb. All nails grow in a “slanted” shape and have a white section known as “live flesh” where the blood vessels are and which does not need to be cut. It is very painful for the animal and can even bleed!
Although it all depends on the growth and habits of the rabbit, in general it is recommended to trim the nails every 4-6 weeks . Be very careful if your nails bend or feel them hit the floor as they walk.
Trim the rabbit’s nails step by step
First, you should purchase a special nail clipper for your rabbit. They sell it in pet stores and it can usually be used with cats as well. After, proceed to cut paying attention to the following steps:
1. Choose a well-lit place
It can be the kitchen, the terrace or the garden, what matters is that it is a place that receives direct lighting. This way, you will be able to see how far you have to cut your nails. If your rabbit has dark nails, it will also be helpful to use a lamp to identify the raw meat area, which is like a reddish spot.
2. Reassure your pet
Rabbits can get very stressed during unusual situations and, if they feel threatened, they can react by kicking with their hind legs . It is advisable to start cutting his nails from an early age so that he gets used to it.
Likewise, we recommend that you calm him down throughout the process with cuddles and kind words. Also, it is better not to be nervous, because you will pass on your discomfort to the animal.
3. Ask for help
If you can’t do it on your own because the rabbit is moving too much, or you don’t have the courage to cut its nails, you can ask someone to hold it. We recommend that you place him face up on your lap, as this position will calm him down.
In case you live alone or no one can help you, the best thing to do is take him to the vet, who will take care of cutting his nails.
4. Cut carefully
Take a paw, move the fur and identify each nail. Then rest the scissors on the edge and make a diagonal cut , neat and forcefully (they are quite hard). If you can, next time cut a little higher. Repeat the process on the nails of each paw and the spur.
5. Be ready for anything
Make sure you don’t cut the blood vessel area, but an accident could happen. Don’t worry: apply a blood thinner right away to stop the bleeding. If you can’t, take him to the vet urgently.
More tips on your rabbit’s nails
Prevention and good habits are very important to keep your rabbit’s claws from getting too big. One of the best techniques to naturally file them is by rubbing them with earth, stones or logs.