Dew claws - removal from breeder or not? - Golden Retrievers : Golden Retriever Dog Forums

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Old 02-09-2013, 02:37 PM
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Dew claws - removal from breeder or not?

I don't think our breeder does this, although I do plan to ask her about it. A lot of what I have been reading says that beeeders often have the dew claws removed.

Our last dog had dew claws - I never knew people removed them. So what are your thoughts on te subject?
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Old 02-09-2013, 02:41 PM
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I prefer they be left on. My pet theory is dogs who have them removed can be a bit more phobic about having their nails trimmed right from the beginning.

Only 2 of our dogs (Jacks and Danny) had their nails removed. And even though we did everything the same way with them as far as getting them used to having their nails done, etc... they still would get hysterical about getting them clipped.

Bertie (still has his) is a lot like our past goldens with dews. He will even switch paws for you.
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Old 02-09-2013, 02:45 PM
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I have heard that they may be more useful in agility, such as on turns. Don't know how much truth there is in this.
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Old 02-09-2013, 03:43 PM
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Of the ten Goldens I have had only two had their dewclaws removed. I have never had a problem either way... But I have also heard a current theory that it affects the front legs by removing them. I have never removed them on my own pups. And when I have done tails and dewclaws on pups at work, taking off the dewclaws makes them scream more than taking off tails.
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Old 02-09-2013, 03:53 PM
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More and more Golden breeders are leaving them on. Especially performance breeders, although some field breeders still take them off--he theory being that they get snagged in brush etc. I do not remove them on my puppies, and my MH bitch and her kids all have theirs and we have never had a problem. My eldest two had theirs removed as wee babies, and I find that neither of them is as stable through the wrist as mine who still have theirs. There is a ligament attached to it, so it makes sense that the joint would not be as tightly knit with that part of the structure missing. The only reason I would remove one now is if it were protruding and causing a problem for hunting. Chris Zink's article on how dogs use them is pretty compelling to me, as is video of dogs actually using them when corning, climbing, and pulling themselves out of water.
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Old 02-09-2013, 04:56 PM
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While there probably are compelling reasons to leave the dew claws on, nail cutting probably isn't one of them, as my Tito is by far the best of my guys when it comes to that, and he's the only one who had the dews removed.

I'm glad Tito doesn't have his when I see the stuff he gets tangled up in out in the field. I picture torn dew claws on a regular basis.

That said, I've read Chris Zink's article and it makes lots of valid points for leaving the dew claws on. Also our acupuncture vet has mentioned that there are a lot of nerves and points there, another compelling argument for leaving them on.
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Old 02-09-2013, 05:11 PM
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Barb - that's what I've heard from other people. But going by the dogs I've had - the ones with the dews were/are the easiest for clipping toenails. They will actually lounge around looking relaxed while I go clip-clip-clip.

Danny would act like I was trying to amputate his leg and Jacks scarcely less so.... o_O

The dews grow very fast, so if you aren't trimming them at the least every 2-3 weeks, they will start curling around because they don't touch the ground and wear evenly like the other toenails.
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Old 02-09-2013, 05:28 PM
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Jack had his dew claws and he was the absolute worst at nail clipping. Must have been the stubborn Border Collie in him. Rose has her dew claws and I am banging my head on the wall every-time I have to do her nails reminding myself why I did not ask the breeder to remove them when she was a couple days old.
Trooper had his removed and he was by far the easiest.
Honestly I do not think the dew claws has anything to do with nail clipping, as Barb said. Each pup is different and they all trust you on different levels.
IE Tito trusts Barb with nail clipping but is quite suspicious of her dog biscuit cooking abilities!
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Old 02-09-2013, 06:20 PM
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There was a recent story posted by a Golden owner on a group I belong to that told us how lucky she was that her Golden still had her dew claws. The pup was out on a frozen body of water and it fell in. Apparently the pups dew claws were what helped save this dog from certain doom.

I've seen my own dog, with intact dew claws, use them to climb steep embankments. She runs fields almost every day ~ no issue with them getting caught. Hers are fairly tight to her leg though. I've heard some dogs have loose, floppy dews. Those I'd consider removing maybe. I've read the merits of dew claws for agility too.

I do hate trimming them though, ugh, such a pain. My girl still hates to have her nails trimmed (I dremel). It's always a comical event. She'll let anyone handle her paws all day long, so it's not a paw manipulation issue. My first golden didn't like nail trimming either, and her dews were removed.
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Old 02-09-2013, 06:36 PM
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Nice video: Interesting Video and article on the importance of Dew Claws

Other link on page doesn't work, sorry.

Zink article on dew claws: http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j...,d.dmQ&cad=rjt
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