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Owner of Lucy (july 2015)
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Discussion Starter #1
Hi there. Our Golden Retriever Lucy is 15 months, and we have been training her for search and rescue / mantrailing for about half a year now. When trailing on concrete, however, she wears her nails down to the quick, which results in a small bloodbath on all four of her paws. The last time this happened was a number of months ago, and ever since we have been looking for solutions. We tried Ruffwear dog boots, which were not a succes. They kept flipping over (even when properly sized and while wearing boot liners), and severely irritated the dew claws on her front paws. We have now moved on to Neo Paws, but are still figuring out sizing, and also putting them on is a tedious process. I really think trailing without boots altogether would be best, so another solution we are hoping could work are Soft Paws nail caps. These will arrive shortly and I am very eager to see whether they survive Lucy's enthusiasm long enough to be useful.

My question to all of you is whether you recognize this problem, and which solutions have worked for you. Also, could it be that as Lucy matures, her nails will become harder / less prone to wear and tear?

The problem only occurs when mantrailing as she is allowed to pull on te leash then, which she does frantically. On regular (long) walks on pavement, there are no problems.

Thanks a lot!
Guido (Maastricht, The Netherlands)
 

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Hi Guido.

I know many working dog handlers who use Ruffwear boots. If your dog is in between sizes, always size down. That being said, I have a friend that had a similar issue with keeping the boots on with liners (assuming you have the grip trex), she uses vet wrap instead just around the dew claw area and a little into the boot. Vet wrap is more tacky, not smooth and thin like the liners. You may want to give that a try and see how it works out for you.

Best of luck, I hope you find a solution.
 

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Owner of Lucy (july 2015)
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51 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for your response. We have tried vetwrap as was also advised by the people at Ruffwear. The dewclaw problem remained, however. The problem does not seem to be abrasion, but the pressure of the velcro wrap immediately on the fleshy part of the dewclaw. Do you happen to have any experiences with Soft Paws nail caps?
 

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Thanks for your response. We have tried vetwrap as was also advised by the people at Ruffwear. The dewclaw problem remained, however. The problem does not seem to be abrasion, but the pressure of the velcro wrap immediately on the fleshy part of the dewclaw. Do you happen to have any experiences with Soft Paws nail caps?
Hi Guido,

I'm sorry to hear that it didn't help you. I haven't personally used the nail caps but I know of a service dog handler who uses them on her GSD. She used them for a few days but unfortunately they didn't hold up well after a few days. I'll post below what she said:

"Well. . . It's a nice idea. I'll add more detailed review tonight or tomorrow but in short I'm thinking @softpawscom claw caps won't be making the cut for our active life.

The bottoms have worn off in only a few days just from our daily work and recreation so they aren't protecting the tip of the nail, which is why I wanted them at all and two have entirely fallen off.
They did offer some positives and we're VERY cute but I'm just not thinking they can hold up to our lifestyle enough for them to be worth while."
I'll be sure to contact you if I find any other product that may work. I heard Neopaws are great, the store is located in Toronto. Many of my friends have had a good experience with the product and company.
 

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Hey Guido.

I tried a new style of boot called Canine Equipment Ultimate Trail Boots for my golden. They seem to hold up well against the pavement, salt and snow. You may want to check out the Polar Trex by Ruffwear as they have a new design which may help you.

Hope all is well.
 
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