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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My rat (and also my gerbils and hammies) are getting some really long (and painful for me) nails. How do you guys recommend keeping them at safe lengths for both you and your pets? In the past I've tried clipping them myself but its a thankless job and usually my pets don't appreciate it. I've been savaged by a gerbil who wasn't about to let me hold him still in any way shape or form. I've also heard of putting sandpaper in wheels but I can't think that would be good for a dragging tail and I highly doubt my rat would use a wheel as she views running in place or in a ball as an affront to her intelligence.
 

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I've heard putting a rock or brick in the cage helps wear them down.

I was advised by my vet to put a piece of sandpaper on a flat surface and drag the rat along it - I tried once and decided it was too cruel to do (I'm a soft touch)

Now I tend to just leave their nails unless they're a health problem for the rat then trim with nail scissors - usually though they scratch me to pieces but I'm a hardass and take it lol
 

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For my ratties, I use a human nail trimmer, and just trim the sharp long tips off. It usually helps if you can get a friend to hold your rat. You can generally see the pink blood vessel in there, and as long as you don't cut in to that, you should be fine.

For the teeny rodents, I think the brick would be the best way to go. Their nails are so small and they don't deal as well with being contorted like rats do.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I've got plenty of experience trimming nails - I do my cat regularly and I had rabbits for years. I think I'm slightly allergic to the rat as her nails leave horribly red welts all over my skin so I prefer to keep them trimmed somewhat. I just wanted to make sure that wouldn't be too overly stressful. I'll definately have to see about getting a brick for my little ones.
 

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i, just successfully clipped my rats nails for the first time with no squeaking or bleeding. i hold them against my chest with one hand, which ever foot im working on i put between my pinky and finger beside pinky finger, so it isnt as easy to move, i also do it while they are sleeping (i wake them up, yes i know, bad mommy!) then they dont move as much. dont cut the pink part of the nail or they will bleed. every time they move i say "you gonna be okay" in a weird baby-ish voice. and try to make it fast or it will be hard for you and the rat, some websites say give a break between feet, dont, that just takes longer and then they are rowled up again, offer lots of treats at the end. if they get really long so will the quick (pink part), so gradually cut it back and the quick will grow smaller aswell. i do tihis once a week, or every 2 weeks
 

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i put my rats in my hand in a comftorable position and only clip the tip to make sure they won't scratch eachother.
 

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I have my fiance hold the rat in question, and just do all four feet in a row, clipping of the sharp ends. We do it once a week or so. Peapoepoe is a giant drama queen, squeaking her head off as soon as the trimmers come out. Such a baby. My other girl, Sprinkles, I swear chews her own nails down. She never has sharp nails and since there isn't anything rough in her cage, she must take care of them herself.
 

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That's the rat for me! One that chews it's own claws down to a good length. XD

Back when I had my parakeet, her nails rarely grew very sharp. It was something to think about, because she did not have a sand-paper perch in her cage.... I wonder if rats would like one of those? They make huge sand-paper perches for Maccaws and Cockatoos and birds like that... Do you think a rat would enjoy climbing on it, and would wear it's own nails down that way?
 

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Sami said:
That's the rat for me! One that chews it's own claws down to a good length. XD

Back when I had my parakeet, her nails rarely grew very sharp. It was something to think about, because she did not have a sand-paper perch in her cage.... I wonder if rats would like one of those? They make huge sand-paper perches for Maccaws and Cockatoos and birds like that... Do you think a rat would enjoy climbing on it, and would wear it's own nails down that way?
Sand paper perches and liners are actually very bad for birds. They are very abrasive and can be pretty hard on the feet. If you want a perch that can blunt the nails a bit there are concrete perches that are less abrasive. Basically you just make sure the concrete perch isn't the highest perch in the cage (usually the most used perch) so it doesn't cause feet problems. It still wouldn't replace the need for nail trimming though.

Same goes for rats, don't put sand paper anything in their cage. Some people will put a brick (make sure to clean it very well) under the water bottle to dull down the nails.
 

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rat feet are very sensitive and before i cut too short winkie squeked so i let go immediatly and put her back in the tub with pooks. i usually get their feet wet befor cutting because it shows you how long the nail really is like when you put your hand in the water for 5-10 minutes.
 

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Darksong17 said:
Sand paper perches and liners are actually very bad for birds. They are very abrasive and can be pretty hard on the feet. If you want a perch that can blunt the nails a bit there are concrete perches that are less abrasive. Basically you just make sure the concrete perch isn't the highest perch in the cage (usually the most used perch) so it doesn't cause feet problems. It still wouldn't replace the need for nail trimming though.

Same goes for rats, don't put sand paper anything in their cage. Some people will put a brick (make sure to clean it very well) under the water bottle to dull down the nails.
Well there goes that idea. :)
That's ok though, I can clip their nails with help from my love when they need clipping.
 
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