How do I use styptic powder?
Just dip the injured area into a container or small bowl of the powder.
Always pour some styptic powder out into a separate bowl; do not dip any injured claws directly into the main styptic container, as this could cause all of the powder to become a bit dirty. It is also easier if using a separate container.
You only need to lightly cover the affected area – don’t overdo it. Bleeding should stop immediately, but if not, apply some light pressure and dip again.
If bleeding still doesn’t stop, see a veterinarian ASAP.
How does styptic powder work?
As a tiny blood vessel (the ‘quick’) is found running through the centre of the claw, cutting too short can cause bleeding. It can be surprising just how much blood is drawn, too. Styptic powder or gel will stop this, though.
Styptics cause hemostasis by contracting blood vessels and stopping the blood flow. It is essential that this is done ASAP, as bleeding can be painful and upsetting for your pet, and could also cause infections if left as an open wound.
It isn’t only a clotting agent, but also an antiseptic.
Can I use styptic powder on other animals?
Styptic powder is commonly used on cats, dogs, and rabbits, whose quick is found in the centre of the nail.
It can also commonly be used for injuries involving bird beaks.
How do I avoid cutting too short?
An obvious way would be to take your pet to the vet or groomers to get this done. Accidents can still occur, but they will have everything needed to hand.
If you must do this at home for whatever reason however, a pair of nail clippers with a guard on them which will prevent you from going too short, too.
But at the end of the day, as all claws are different, there is no telling just where the quick is. Some claws are also dark, so the quick is not at all visible. Because of this, always have the styptic powder to hand before cutting and keep your pet calm.
Don’t be put off by hearing that accidents can happen – it is possible, even for the professionals. Just be well prepared.