Many pet owners agree that clipping dog nails is one of the most dreaded grooming tasks. The worry of accidentally clipping the quick keeps many pet parents from handling this pet grooming responsibility at home. The truth is, with the right tool, you can easily trim your dog's nails without spending money on a pet groomer. This best pet nail clippers for dogs comparison and review explains the different types of pet clippers and how each works.
There are two different styles of pet nail clippers for dogs. The traditional style looks like a pair of scissors and works the same way. The second option is a guillotine clipper. Instead of two blades that come together to clip the dog's nail, these clippers have one blade that slides down to trim the tip of the nail (much like a guillotine used in the past for beheading, hence the name).
You can also use a Dremel, which is like an electric nail file for dogs. I discuss all three of these products in this pet nail clippers for dogs comparison. Personally, I prefer the traditional pet clippers (and I'll explain why), but the choice is really about your personal preference and the nail trimmers that your pet likes best.
I tried out some pet nail clippers for large breeds from Epica, as well as a pair for smaller breeds from Safari (a very well known manufacturer of dog grooming tools). I've also tested a Dremel with our dogs over the last few weeks. Find their separate reviews here:
I've always used traditional scissor-style pet nail clippers for dogs, so that is what my dogs and I both prefer over the electronic Dremel tool. However, some dog owners may disagree with take a Dremel tool over the traditional pet clippers. That's just personal preference, but I'll show you why you may or may not pick one over the other.
Dremel vs. Safari vs. Epica: Best Pet Nail Clippers for Dogs Comparison & Review
Similarities of these top 3 pet nail clippers for dogs
As I explain in my video, the two traditional pet clippers are almost identical aside from their size. When purchasing nail trimmers, you really need to select the size that is appropriate for your dog. Small clippers will make it really tough to clip a large breed's thick nails. Large pet clippers will easily cut through dog's small nails, but they also make it much easier to take off more of the nail than you should.
If you're looking for traditional pet nail clippers for dogs (either scissor-style or guillotine clippers) there are a few features that you should be looking for. As you'll see, both of these clippers feature stainless steel heads and blades. This is a MUST when shopping for the best pet nail clippers for dogs. Not only are stainless steel blades more durable, but they are also much easier to clean and won't rust.
You'll also want to purchase a set of pet clippers with a spring-loaded handle. This makes the process of trimming your dog's nails much easier and faster. When you squeeze the handle together to clip the nail, spring-loaded trimmers will pop back open by themselves. You'll experience hand fatigue much sooner if the clippers you buy aren't equipped with this feature.
In my video I also show you an up-close view of the Epica and Safari dog clippers. I make a point of addressing the importance of a safety guard – this is a MUST HAVE on any pair of dog trimmers that you buy. This ensures that you can't stick the dog's nail too far through the blades. It doesn't guarantee that you won't clip the quick (and if you do, make sure you have styptic powder or gel), but a guard definitely makes it less likely.
Another safety feature that you'll want is a lock. Both the Epica and Safari pet nail clippers for dogs are equipped with an easy-to-use lock that slides down to keep the blades from opening. This will keep anyone from accidentally getting cut and will also protect the blades from damage when they aren't in use.
Guillotine style clippers are very similar to these scissor-style clippers. I didn't include a pair of these in my pet nail clippers for dogs comparison, because the only difference is the motion of the blade sliding up and down as you squeeze the handles together. Obviously, the Dremel is completely different. The rotating nail file gets the same job done in a much different way.
RELATED: 6 Tips for Cutting Your Dog’s Nails
Differences between the 3 pet nail clippers for dogs
In my opinion, a good pet nail clippers for dogs comparison and review should not only tell you the similarities between the products, but also the differences. As I mentioned, the Epica clippers and the Safari clippers are very similar. The only difference between the two is their size, and it's very important that you buy the appropriate size for your pet. If you have multiple dogs, then you should buy multiple clippers.
Epica Best Professional Dog Nail Clippers
As stated earlier in this dog nail clipper comparison, this product offers all the features that you want when selecting a pair of clippers for your pet. If you have a large breed, this is a great choice. They are comfortable and lightweight with a spring-loaded handle and stainless steel blades.
Pet nail clippers for dogs aren't usually expensive. That's one of the reasons cutting your dog's nails is such a beneficial skill to learn. You can pick up these clippers on Amazon for $10. All the tools in this dog nail clipper comparison can be used for many years. You'll save hundreds of dollars in professional grooming costs in that time.
Safari Dog Nail Clippers
If you've got a small or medium breed, these pet clippers from Safari are a great choice. They also have stainless steel blades, a spring-loaded handle, a safety guard and a safety lock. Small dogs have very thin nails, and these clippers will slice through them like a knife through warm butter.
You only need to use slight pressure to quickly clip the tip off your pet's nail. You can get these clippers in a bigger size for large breeds as well. You can purchase the small size for less than $7 on Amazon, which is a great deal!
These are very lightweight clippers, which is perfect if you have multiple small dogs. The rubber grip allows you to keep control of the clippers and helps to prevent hand fatigue. I love using these clippers for our little beagle mix, Molly. In my video you'll see that Molly isn't completely used to having her nails clipped yet, but this tool is small enough for me to hang onto and keep control of her at the same time.
Dremel Dog Nail Trimming Tool
Clearly there is one tool in this comparison of the best pet nail clippers for dogs that isn't like the other two. The Dremel is a much different tool, but it gets the same job done. Think of a Dremel as you would a nail file for humans, except that it's battery powered.
The file on the head of the Dremel spins rapidly. When pressed gently against your dog's nail it files the tip down. Some pet owners prefer to use Dremel over traditional clippers because they feel there is less of a risk of injuring the dog.
Actually, you can still file the nail too short with a Dremel. If you apply too much pressure against the nail, it may cause your dog pain. I will say that this rotary tool does take some of the guesswork out of dog nail trimming though.
If you're interested in purchasing a Dremel, you want to find one with a rechargeable battery. Not only does a rechargeable battery offer more power, but it will also save you money because you won't have to continue to buy replacement batteries.
Aside from its function, the biggest difference you'll notice with this tool is the price. You can pick this particular Dremel tool up on Amazon for $24. It's more than double the price of traditional pet nail clippers, but it's very affordable in terms of the product that you receive.
In my video I explain why I don't care for Dremel tools. First of all, they scare my dogs. Yes, I probably could work with my pets to help them feel comfortable with the noise and feel of the Dremel. I've always used a traditional pair of clippers, so why waste the time training my dogs and getting myself used to a new product?
Regular pet nail clippers are also much faster than a Dremel tool. I can clip every nail on all four of my dog's feet with a set of nail clippers in the same amount of time that it would take me to do all the nails on one paw with a Dremel.
Of course, if you're more nervous about using dog nail clippers and your Fido isn't used to them, you may have the opposite problem. As I said, this review of pet nail clippers for dogs is meant to show you the pros and cons between each type of tool. You need to decide for yourself which tool will be best for you and your dog.
LAST COMPARISON: FURminator vs. DakPets vs. Magic Pro Deshedding Tools
Now, onto my pick as the best pet nail clippers for dogs out of all three options…
My Personal Favorite Pet Nail Clippers for Dogs
Through the process of making this dog nail clipper comparison, I used all three products. What you may not realize is that I actually tested all of these products with our dogs for about 8 weeks. Each week I used them on our dogs to make sure that I had enough experience with each tool to give you guys an overview of their similarities and differences.
I wasn't surprised that the Epica Professional Dog Nail Clippers turned out to be my top choice.
I've been trimming my own dog's nails for many years, and I'm very comfortable with this type of clipper. These are well made and have all the features that you want in a quality pair of pet nail trimmers.
Clippers are much faster than a Dremel, and you don't have to deal with the noise of the motor that scares most dogs. I can't stress enough that choosing the right set of pet nail clippers for dogs is a personal choice. You need to choose the tool that you're comfortable with and the one that your dog is most comfortable with as well.
CHECK OUT MY VIDEO GUIDE: How To Cut Dog's Nails 101
Now that you've chosen your pet nail clippers for dogs, you may need advice on how to clip you dog's nails. Watch my step by step guide on how to cut dog's nails below: