To trim your dog's nails, get a pair of canine nail trimmers and a container of clotting powder, then hold the dog's toe firmly but gently. Position the clippers so that they trim the nail but do not hit the quick, then squeeze the handle.
It is best to get your dog accustomed to having its feet handled before trimming. Hold the toes, play with them and reward your dog for quietly accepting this behavior. Start by doing it for a very short time and gradually increase the length of time. When you start trimming, continue giving the dog treats after every toe is done to make the process enjoyable.
There are two types of nail trimmers. One is essentially a small pair of scissors, while the other uses a guillotine-like action. Both are effective, so choose whichever is most comfortable for you.
To identify the quick on a dog with light-colored nails, simply look for a dark vein running through the nail. If the dog has black nails, using a flashlight to light the nail from behind can help. You can also trim very slowly and check the nail after each trim. When you start approaching the quick, an oval-shaped spot of pink or gray in the center of the nail becomes evident. If you do accidentally cut the quick, use clotting powder to stop the bleeding.