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Can Dog Nail Clippers Be Sharpened?

Person sharpening a knife on a grinding wheel

Blades are blades, the more you use them the duller they get. When it comes to dog nail clippers this is very true. Dog nail clipper blades will stay sharp if you are rarely using them, for example trimming one dog’s nails once a month.

However, if you do more than that or trim more than one dog each month, expect those blades to get dull fairly quickly. The question is do you have to buy a new pair every time those blades go dull, or can you sharpen them and save some money?

Keep reading to find out the answer to that question.

Do Dog Nail Clippers Get Dull?

Yes, they do, and it does not matter if they are top-quality nail clippers or cheap ones. Eventually, all the different styles of dog nail clippers will get dull on you.

The only difference between the best and the worst nail clippers is that the former style will stay sharper longer than the latter. That means you do not have to sharpen them as often as you would the cheaper brands.

One of the keys to knowing when it is time to sharpen those blades will be when you find it very difficult to cut your dog’s nails. Also, if the nail is bent during the process or the edge is not smooth then it is time to sharpen those blades.

Also, check the blade out. If you see a little chip out of it, then it is time to sharpen the blade and remove that chip. One way to remember to sharpen those blades is to make a schedule and not wait till they are dull.

Just give them a few strokes with the sharpening tool and keep them sharp all the time.

Need to know when to replace your dog’s nail clippers? Click here to learn more.

How to Sharpen Dog Nail Clippers

Sharpening stone resting on a wooden table

There are different ways to sharpen a dull dog nail clipper blade. The method you use will depend on the tool you use. The first step is deciding on which tool you will use. Those options are as follows:

  1. A sharpening stone
  2. A grinding stones
  3. A diamond tapered file
  4. Regular file (ceramic & circular)

The next step is to take your clippers apart. While some can be sharpened intact, in most cases the way to sharpen is to separate the blades. Some of those tools will require that those blades be sharpened one at a time and not in one piece. Usually, only the scissor style needs to be separated.

Step three is to do the actual sharpening. You do not need a lot of strokes to get the blade nice and sharp. You are not sharpening a knife to cut the turkey or some tough beef.

You want the blade so sharp that your dog does not feel a lot of pressure when those blades do their work. When you are done, just put the clippers back together again.

The good news is that grinders come with extra tough grinding stones and never need sharpening.

What are the best nail clippers for small dogs? Click here to find out.

Some Tips to Sharpen Your Clippers

person clipping dog nails with dog nail clippers

1. If you are using a ceramic rod or a file, make sure to cut along the natural edge of the blade. Any other direction will just make the blades duller than they already are.

2. Hold the sharpening rod at an angle and pull it towards you.

3. Always pull the blade towards you and only go in one direction. Other directions just waste your time and ruin your work.

4. Always wipe the blades clean. This will get rid of any shards, slivers, or other debris that comes with sharpening a blade.

5. Create a schedule that has you regularly sharpening those blades even when they do not need it. You do not have to wait till they get dull before you make them sharp again.

There Will Come a Time

Black and red dog nail clippers isolated on a white background.

Metal blades, especially nail clippers, are only so thick. That means that there are only so many times you can sharpen them before you cannot sharpen them anymore.

When you get to that point, you have to replace them. But before you do, make sure you get the best clippers possible. You do not want to subject your pet to cheap clippers as they cause more stress. And they do not last long.

Some Final Words

Person cutting nails on a large brown dog paw.

Sharpening your dog’s nail clipper blades is a smart move. It will help those clippers last longer. Plus, this task will save you some money. You won’t have to run out and get a new pair any time soon.

If you frequently cut your dog’s or dogs’ nails, expect the sharpness to last about 6 months approx. (maybe less if you trim a lot of nails). The best thing to do is sharpen those blades once a month or every two months.

That way they are always ready for when you need them.

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Please note: We are not veterinarians and you use our advice at your own discretion. We always recommend that you consult your veterinarian whenever you have health-related conditions your furbaby is facing. With that in mind, as pet parents ourselves, we wish nothing but the best for your pet and their healthy and happy lives.