Are Your Dogs Nails Peeling? 4 Possible Causes and treatment .

As a devoted pet owner, you always want the best for your furry friend. Regular grooming and care are crucial to keeping your dog healthy and comfortable. Among the essential aspects of canine grooming is nail care. Just like humans, dogs nails peeling can experience issues, and one common problem dog owners may encounter is peeling nails.

Peeling nails in dogs can cause concern, as it may indicate an underlying issue that requires attention. This article will delve into the causes behind dogs nails peeling and explore potential solutions to alleviate this problem. By understanding the root causes and implementing appropriate care measures, you can help your beloved canine companion maintain healthy and strong nails.

The following sections will discuss common causes of peeling dogs nails peeling, including environmental factors, nutritional deficiencies, underlying health conditions, and improper nail care practices. We will also provide insights into identifying peeling nails and offer practical tips for prevention and treatment.

Remember, while this article is an informative guide, it’s essential to consult with a veterinarian for a proper diagnosis and tailored advice specific to your dog’s needs. Now, let’s explore the various factors contributing to peeling nails in dogs and discover the steps you can take to ensure your dog’s paws remain healthy and comfortable.

Possible Causes and How to Treat Dogs Nails Peeling:

  1. Environmental Factors: Rough surfaces, abrasive materials, or excessive scratching can lead to dogs nails peeling. To address this issue, ensure your dog has access to soft and safe walking surfaces, provide appropriate toys to satisfy their chewing needs, and regularly trim their nails to prevent excessive length and vulnerability to damage.
  2. Nutritional Deficiencies: Nutritional imbalances, notably lacking essential vitamins and minerals, can weaken a dogs nails leading to peeling. Consult with your veterinarian to ensure your dog’s diet is well-balanced and contains nutrients crucial for nail health, such as biotin, zinc, and omega-3 fatty acids.
  3. Underlying Health Conditions: Dogs nails peeling can be a symptom of an underlying health issue. Conditions like fungal infections, autoimmune diseases, or hormonal imbalances can affect nail health. If you suspect an underlying health condition, it’s crucial to consult with a veterinarian for a proper diagnosis and appropriate treatment options.
  4. Improper Nail Care Practices: Improper nail trimming techniques or using dull or inappropriate tools can cause nail damage and peeling. Ensure you use high-quality, pet-safe nail clippers or grinders, and trim your dogs nails carefully, avoiding cutting too close to the quick. For more clarification on proper nail trimming, seek a professional groomer or veterinarian.

Treatment and Prevention:

  1. Regular Nail Trimming: Regularly trim your dogs nails  maintaining an appropriate length. This helps prevent nails from becoming too long, brittle, or susceptible to peeling. If you need help trimming your dogs nails peeling safely, seek professional assistance.
  2. Dietary Supplements: Consult your veterinarian about adding nail-supporting supplements to your dog’s diet. Biotin, omega-3 fatty acids, and other nutritional supplements can help strengthen the nails and promote overall nail health.
  3. Address Underlying Health Issues: If peeling nails persist or are accompanied by other symptoms, a veterinarian must thoroughly examine your dog. Treating any underlying health conditions can often resolve the nail peeling problem.
  4. Paw Protection: Use protective dog boots or paw balms when your dog is exposed to harsh surfaces or extreme weather conditions. This can minimize nail damage and prevent peeling.


Dogs nails peeling can indicate various underlying causes, ranging from environmental factors to nutritional deficiencies and health conditions. By identifying the root cause and implementing appropriate measures, such as regular nail care, a balanced diet, and addressing any underlying health issues, you can help your furry companion maintain strong and healthy nails.

Consulting with a veterinarian is vital for a correct prognosis and tailored remedy plan primarily based on your dog’s needs. With proper care and attention, you can ensure your dog’s paws remain cushy and in the choicest situation.

What Happens When A Dog’s Nail Peels?

Dogs nails peeling

When a dogs nails peeling, the outer layer of the nail, called the keratin sheath, comes off or separates from the underlying nail shape. This can expose the sensitive tissue underneath, called the quick, which can cause discomfort or pain for the dog. Dogs nails peeling can occur for several reasons, including:

  1. Excessive Wear: If a dog frequently walks or runs on rough surfaces like concrete or asphalt, the nails can become worn down, leading to peeling.
  2. Trauma or Injury: Accidents or injuries, such as catching a nail on something or getting it caught in a door, can cause the nail to peel or become damaged.
  3. Fungal or Bacterial Infections: Infections can weaken the nail structure, leading to peeling or flaking.
  4. Nutritional Deficiencies: Poor nutrition or imbalances in essential nutrients can weaken the nails and make them prone to peeling.

When a dogs nails peeling, it may experience discomfort or pain, especially if the sensitive quick is exposed. This can result in limping, reluctance to walk or put weight on the affected paw, and increased sensitivity when the paw is touched. Sometimes, peeling nails can lead to bleeding or infection if the nail bed becomes damaged.

If you notice that your dogs nails peeling, it’s essential to sift through them and assess the severity of the issue. It’s advisable to consult with a veterinarian for a proper diagnosis and appropriate treatment. The veterinarian can determine the underlying cause, provide pain relief, and recommend measures to promote healing and prevent further peeling.

What To Do If A Dog’s Nail Is Coming Off

If you notice that your dogs nails peeling is coming off, it’s essential to take the following steps:

  1. Assess the Situation: Carefully examine the nail to determine the extent of the damage. If the nail is partially detached or hanging, avoid touching or pulling on it, as it may cause further pain or injury.
  2. Provide Comfort and Prevent Further Injury: If your dog is experiencing discomfort or pain, try to keep them calm and limit their activity to prevent additional stress on the affected nail. Avoid allowing your dog to lick or chew at the pin, which can lead to further irritation or infection.
  3. Stop Bleeding: Apply gentle pressure with a clean cloth or gauze to the affected area if the nail is bleeding. Elevating the paw can also help reduce blood flow. If bleeding persists or is excessive, contact a veterinarian for guidance.
  4. Clean the Area: If dirt or debris surrounds the injured nail, gently clean it with mild antiseptic or warm water. Avoid harsh chemicals or alcohol, as they can further irritate the wound.
  5. Seek Veterinary Care: It is crucial to consult with a veterinarian when a dog’s nail is coming off. They will be able to assess the situation, provide appropriate treatment, and offer guidance for care at home. Depending on the severity of the injury, the veterinarian may recommend trimming the loose nail, applying an antibiotic ointment, or prescribing pain medication.
  6. Follow Aftercare Instructions: Your veterinarian will provide specific instructions for caring for the affected nail at home. This may include keeping the area clean, applying prescribed ointments, using a protective bandage, or administering any medications. Follow their advice closely to promote healing and prevent infection.

Remember, every situation is particular, and it’s crucial to visit a veterinarian for the correct prognosis and guidance tailored to your canine’s specific desires. They could provide appropriate treatment and help ensure the proper being and comfort of your bushy associate.

Is it normal for dogs to shed nails?

Dogs nails peeling

Yes, it is normal for dogs to shed their nails. Dogs’ nails grow continuously, and as new nail growth occurs, the older portion of the nail is gradually pushed forward. This process allows the more aged, worn-out nail to shed or be naturally worn down.

Shedding nails is a gradual and ongoing process that may go unnoticed. Dogs naturally maintain their nail length through regular activities such as walking, running, scratching, and digging, which can help wear down the nails and contribute to the shedding process.

However, if you notice excessive or sudden shedding of nails, it may indicate an underlying issue that requires attention. Trauma, injury, nutritional deficiencies, fungal infections, or certain health conditions can lead to abnormal or excessive nail shedding. Suppose you have concerns about your dog’s nail shedding. In that case, it is best to consult a veterinarian for a thorough evaluation and appropriate guidance.

How do you fix brittle nails on a dog?

If your dog has brittle nails, there are several steps you can take to help improve their condition:

  1. Evaluate Diet: Ensure your dog receives a balanced and nutritious diet. Proper nutrition, including essential vitamins and minerals, is crucial for nail health. Consult your veterinarian to determine if any dietary adjustments or supplements are needed.
  2. Regular Nail Trimming: Keeping your dog’s nails at an appropriate length can prevent them from becoming overly long and more susceptible to brittleness and breakage. Regularly trim your dog’s nails, careful not to cut too close to the quick.
  3. Moisturize the Nails: Moisturizing the nails can help improve their flexibility and reduce brittleness. Regularly apply pet-friendly nail oil or balm to your dog’s nails. Check with your veterinarian for recommended products suitable for your dog.
  4. Protect Paw Pads: Rough or abrasive surfaces can contribute to brittle nails. Use paw protectors or booties when walking your dog on such surfaces to reduce the wear and tear on their nails.
  5. Provide Paw Pad Care: Dry or cracked paw pads can affect nail health. Keep your dog’s paw pads moisturized using a pet-safe paw balm or moisturizer. This can help maintain overall paw health and indirectly benefit the nails.
  6. Monitor Environmental Conditions: Extreme heat or cold can impact nail health. Minimize your dog’s exposure to extreme temperatures and avoid walking them on hot pavement or icy surfaces.
  7. Seek Veterinary Advice: If your dog’s nails remain brittle despite your efforts or if you notice any other concerning symptoms, it is best to consult with a veterinarian. They can assess your dog’s overall health, conduct necessary tests, and provide specific recommendations or treatments tailored to your dog’s needs.

Remember, each dog is unique, and the causes of brittle nails can vary. Working with your veterinarian will help ensure that the underlying cause is addressed and appropriate measures are taken to improve your dog’s nail health.

How do you know if a dog’s nail is infected?

Dogs nails peeling

Detecting an infected nail in a dog requires careful observation and attention to specific signs and symptoms. Here are some typical indications that a dog’s nail may be infected:

  1. Swelling and Redness: An infected nail may appear swollen, inflamed, or reddened around the affected area. The surrounding skin may also show signs of irritation.
  2. Pain or Discomfort: Dogs with infected nails may exhibit pain or discomfort. They may limp, favor the affected paw, or be hesitant to put weight on it.
  3. Increased Sensitivity: Infected nails can be tender to the touch. Your dog may react negatively when you attempt to handle or examine the affected nail.
  4. Discharge or Pus: You might notice discharge or pus around the nail if an infection occurs. This can be a sign of an underlying bacterial or fungal infection.
  5. Foul Odor: An infected nail can emit a foul smell. If you notice an unpleasant odor coming from your dog’s nail, it could indicate an infection.
  6. Changes in Nail Appearance: An infected nail may appear abnormally. It could be discolored, develop cracks or splits, or show signs of crumbling or brittleness.
  7. Excessive Licking or Chewing: Dogs may exhibit compulsive licking or chewing behavior in response to an infected nail. They may try to relieve the discomfort by constantly tending to the affected area.

If you observe any of these signs, it is essential to seek veterinary attention promptly. A veterinarian can examine the nail, assess the severity of the infection, and provide appropriate treatment, which may include cleaning the wound, prescribing antibiotics or antifungal medications, or performing necessary procedures like nail trimming or removal if required.

Note that these symptoms are general indicators, and a veterinarian can only make an accurate diagnosis. They can determine if the nail is infected and provide the necessary guidance and treatment options for your dog’s situation.

Do unhealthy dogs shed more?

Unhealthy dogs sometimes experience excessive shedding, which is not a universal rule. Shedding in dogs is a natural process influenced by various factors such as breed, season, and overall health. While some health conditions can contribute to increased shedding, others may cause a decrease in coat quality or abnormal hair loss.

Here are some examples of how specific health issues can affect a dog’s shedding patterns:

  1. Nutritional Deficiencies: Inadequate nutrition can result in poor coat condition, increasing shedding, or dull, brittle hair. A well-balanced diet with proper nutrients, including essential fatty acids, can help maintain a healthy coat.
  2. Allergies: Dogs with allergies, whether food allergies or environmental allergies, may experience skin irritation, itching, and excessive shedding due to their immune system’s response to the allergens.
  3. Hormonal Imbalances: Hormonal imbalances, such as thyroid disorders or Cushing’s disease, can impact a dog’s coat and cause excessive shedding or changes in hair growth patterns.
  4. Skin Infections or Parasites: Skin infections, fungal infections, or infestations of parasites like fleas or mites can lead to itching, irritation, and subsequent hair loss or shedding.
  5. Stress or Anxiety: Dogs experiencing high stress or anxiety levels may exhibit increased shedding. Stress can disrupt regular coat growth cycles and contribute to excessive hair loss.

It’s important to note that shedding alone does not necessarily indicate poor health. Dogs naturally shed their hair as part of the regular hair growth cycle. However, if you notice excessive or abnormal shedding patterns in your dog, it is advisable to consult with a veterinarian. They can evaluate your dog’s overall health, identify any underlying issues, and recommend appropriate treatments or interventions to address the cause of the excessive shedding.

Do dogs have feelings in their nails?

Dogs nails peeling

Dogs do not have feelings specifically in their nails. Nails in dogs, just like in humans, are composed of keratin, a hard protein material. Keratin is not innervated with nerve endings that can sense pain, touch, or other sensations.

However, it’s important to note that the area around the nails, called the quick, does contain blood vessels and nerves. The quick is a sensitive part of the nail that supplies nutrients and allows for nail growth. If the quick is injured or trimmed too closely, it can cause pain and bleeding.

When dogs experience discomfort or pain related to their nails, it is typically due to issues involving the surrounding tissues, such as the nail bed, nail matrix, or the quick. Infections, injuries, ingrown nails, or trauma to the nail area can cause pain and discomfort for dogs.

So while dogs don’t have feelings specifically in their nails, they can experience pain or discomfort if issues affect the nail and surrounding structures. It’s essential to handle and care for a dogs nails peeling, ensuring proper nail trimming techniques and seeking veterinary attention if there are signs of pain or injury.

Does Vaseline help brittle nails?

Vaseline, a brand name for petroleum jelly, can provide some moisture to the nails and cuticles. Applying a thin layer of Vaseline to the nails and cuticles may help temporarily improve their moisture levels and reduce dryness. This can be beneficial for brittle nails to some extent.

However, it’s important to note that Vaseline alone may not address the underlying causes of brittle nails. Nutritional deficiencies, excessive exposure to water or chemicals, certain health conditions, or poor nail care habits can influence brittle nails.

To improve the overall health of brittle nails, it’s recommended to take a comprehensive approach, including:

  • Proper Nutrition: Ensure your dog’s diet includes essential nutrients such as biotin, zinc, omega-3 fatty acids, and protein, which support nail health. Consult with your veterinarian about appropriate dietary adjustments or supplements if necessary.
  • Regular Nail Care: Trim your dogs nails to an appropriate length, careful not to cut too close to the quick. This can help prevent nail breakage and splitting.
  • Moisturize the Nails and Paws: Use pet-friendly nail oils or balms containing jojoba oil or vitamin E to moisturize the nails and prevent them from becoming too dry and brittle. Additionally, moisturizing the paw pads can indirectly benefit nail health.
  • Protect the Nails: Limit your dog’s exposure to rough or abrasive surfaces that can cause excessive nail wear and tear. Consider using paw protectors or booties during walks on such surfaces.
  • Consult a Veterinarian: If your dogs nails peeling continue to be brittle despite your efforts, it’s advisable to consult a veterinarian. They can evaluate your dog’s overall health, assess the specific condition of the nails, and provide tailored recommendations or treatments.

While Vaseline may offer some temporary benefits, addressing the underlying causes of brittle nails for long-term improvement is essential.

What vitamins help dogs split nails?

Dogs nails peeling

Several vitamins and nutrients can support the health of a dogs nails peeling and help reduce splitting. These include :

  • Biotin (Vitamin B7): Biotin is crucial for maintaining healthy nails. It helps strengthen the nails and promote overall nail health. Biotin-rich foods include liver, eggs, salmon, sweet potatoes, and spinach.
  • Zinc: Zinc is an essential mineral that plays a role in nail growth and strength. It helps produce keratin, the protein that makes up nails. Zinc-rich foods include beef, lamb, pumpkin seeds, and lentils.
  • Omega-three Fatty Acids: Omega-three fatty acids, particularly EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), are beneficial for promoting healthy skin and coat, indirectly supporting nail fitness. Sources of omega-three fatty acids for dogs include fish oil, salmon, sardines, and flaxseed.
  • Vitamin E: Vitamin E is an antioxidant that helps protect cells and tissues, including the nails, from oxidative damage. It can support healthy nail growth. Foods rich in vitamin E include sunflower seeds, almonds, spinach, and broccoli.
  • Protein: Adequate protein intake is essential for nail health and strength. It provides the building blocks for nail growth and repair. Good protein resources for puppies encompass lean meats, fowl, fish, and eggs.

It’s essential to be aware that while these nutrients can contribute to healthy nails, it is first-class to talk with a veterinarian before including any dietary supplements in your dog’s weight-reduction plan. They can assess your dog’s specific needs, recommend appropriate dosages, and guide you on the best approach to address splitting nails in your dog. Additionally, ensuring a balanced and nutritious diet will provide a good foundation for optimal nail health.

Final thought

Taking care of your dogs nails peeling is vital to their overall well-being. Brittle nails, splitting, or other nail-related issues can be uncomfortable and potentially lead to further complications if left unaddressed. You can support your dogs nails peeling health by providing proper nutrition, regular nail care, and consulting with a veterinarian when needed.

Remember to be patient and consistent in your efforts. It may take time to see improvements, and each dog’s needs may vary. Your veterinarian can provide personalized advice and guidance based on your dog’s specific condition and health status.

In addition to addressing any underlying health concerns, maintaining a loving and stress-free environment for your dog can also contribute to their overall health, including nail health. Regular grooming sessions and positive associations with nail trimming can help reduce anxiety and make the process more comfortable for your furry friend.

By paying attention to your dogs nails peeling, providing appropriate care, and seeking veterinary guidance, you can help keep their nails healthy, strong, and comfortable.