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Nail grinders are a fantastic way to cut your dog’s nails at home while minimizing the risk of going too deep and hurting your pup.
But if your dog has had a traumatizing nail grooming experience in the past, especially with a nail grinder, just the sound of the machine can put them on edge.
This makes it almost impossible for you to catch them and pin them down for essential grooming.
But, luckily, the market is ahead of you here, and you can now get surprisingly quiet nail grinders that won’t send your pup running.
Read on for our reviews of the five best quiet nail grinders for dogs currently on the market.
We’ll also take you through our top tips for how best to use a grinder to keep your dog’s nails trimmed and groomed.
Product Quick Links
- Dremel 7300-PT Dog & Cat Nail Grinder Kit
- Hertzko Electronic Dog & Cat Nail Grinder
- Wahl Ultimate Corded Pet Nail Grinder
- FURminator Nail Grinder For Dogs & Cats
- Oster Gentle Paws Premium Dog & Cat Nail Grinder
5 Best Quiet Nail Grinders
Dremel nail grinders are so good that dog nail grinders, in general, are sometimes called dremels (just like you’d call tissues Kleenex), so it should be no surprise that a Dremel is our top choice.
While the name might make you think of a loud home power tool, this machine is surprisingly quiet.
- Two speeds
- Cordless and rechargeable
This tool allows you to work at two different speeds of 6,500 or 13,000 RPM, which means you can power through tough, thick nails, but then slow down for more detailed work near the quick.
You might think this speed seems quite slow, but unless you are a professional who has a lot of experience working on dogs’ nails, you probably don’t want to be working with anything faster.
The tool is cordless, so you don’t need to worry about your dog getting caught up in the chord while you are working, and it has a removable and rechargeable battery that will save you money in the long run.
It also comes with a variety of sanding cylinders included, so you probably won’t need to buy any extras, though they are available.
While this Dremel is not the absolute quietest model you will come across on this list, its low buzz is unlikely to upset any but the most sensitive pups.
- Multiple speeds
- Rechargeable battery
- Relatively quiet
- Trusted brand
- Moderately expensive
- Not the quietest model on the market
This Dremel grinder is a high-quality product from a respected brand, so you shouldn’t expect it to be cheap.
But, while it is more than twice as expensive as some of the options on this list, it also comes with a two-year warranty, so you can be sure of your investment.
OUR EXPERIENCE: We’ve personally used the Dremel 7300-PT and really liked that it had a removable rechargeable battery. While great for the first year of use the battery gradually lost strength until it was unusable. As for how quiet it was? Our sensitive dogs Linus and Raven tolerated the Dremel.
The Hertzko combines a diamond-bit grinder with a quiet motor to produce one of the best options for anyone looking for a low-noise nail file.
- Diamond-bit grinder
- USB charger
The Hertzko is cordless, which means you can focus on the task at hand without worrying about power sockets and cords. Recharge your battery with the convenient USB charger; they work just like your phone charger.
The grinder has three different sized openings, which are appropriate for different sized paws. This means a single machine can work well in a multi-pet household.
One of the more expensive options on the list, it is worth it if you have a dog that is easily spooked, because this model is blissfully quiet.
- Adjustable sizing
- USB rechargeable
- Replacement bands not included
- Slower than some other options
Some people may think this isn’t a great option because it doesn’t give you multiple speed options, but with the diamond-bit head, you can work through the nail quickly without the need for fast rotation.
If you are happy to invest in a professional style grinder, then you won’t find much better than this premium product from Wahl.
- Multiple speeds
- Multiple sanding surfaces
This is a lightweight and ergonomic model designed to be comfortable to use, perhaps by a professional who is going to spend the day grooming dog nails.
The machine has a lot of options including multiple speeds up to 13,000 RPM, a standard sanding drum with three different sanding wheels, and a small drum with another three choices of sanding surfaces.
This means you always have the right tool for the job at hand.
The main downside with this model is that it is corded, so you need to find a good working space in your hand. But you’ll have short work of grinding your pup’s nails with this powerful but quiet machine.
- Ergonomic design
- Multiple speeds
- Multiple sanding surfaces
This model is really designed for the professional rather than for home use and has a price-tag to match. But there is no reason your dog can’t get the professional treatment from you at home.
The most affordable grinder on our list, this is still one of the safest grinders on the market, and it is pretty quiet.
- Two speeds
- Nail guard
- LED light
This grinder also has a two-speed design, giving you options for working through tough nails and around finer points.
But the thing that really stands out about this grinder is its safety features. It has a nail guard to ensure your dog’s fur doesn’t get caught up in the grinder and an LED light so you can always clearly see what you are doing.
The main drawback with this grinder is that it is powered by AA batteries. It comes with the required set of four so you can get working right away, but they will need replacing regularly, which adds to the expense of the grinder in the long term.
- Adjustable speeds
- LED light
- Nail guard
- Relatively quiet
- Uses AA batteries
- Not as quiet as other options on this list
This grinder will appeal to new users who don’t want to invest a lot without knowing if they will continue to use the machine and who will find comfort in the various safety features.
OUR EXPERIENCE: We used and loved our FURminator Nail Grinder. The big, big downfall for this nail grinder was the AA batteries. It takes 4 and they’d only last a few trimming sessions. By the way, in our arsenal we used the FURminator for our quiet grinder and a regular (not pet) Dremel once our dog’s got used to the sound of a nail grinder. Because we don’t like constantly replacing batteries we’re testing other quiet grinders.
The Oster is probably the quietest of all the grinders on this list, and it is also affordable, so it is a great choice for anyone with a jumpy dog at home.
- Multiple speeds and coarsenesses
- Safety guard
As well as being whisper quiet, this grinder is designed for safety. It has a fully adjustable safety guard that not only prevents you from cutting too deeply, but also catches grindings for easy clean-up.
Choose from two speeds and also choose your level of coarseness, as the model comes with a coarse stone, fine band, and two coarse bands.
Our main complaint with this model is that it uses disposable batteries, which adds to the expense of the product, and it isn’t overly environmentally friendly.
Also, unlike the previous option, the batteries you will need to get started aren’t included.
- Easy clean-up features
- Safety feature
- Multiple speed
- Multiple coarsenesses
- Uses batteries
- Initial batteries not included
While the batteries add hidden expense to this option, the fact that it is quiet and comes with lots of features that will help nervous trimmers mean it is still a fantastic option.
Why Choose Nail Grinders
Nail grinders are a great alternative to clipping when it comes to grooming your dog’s nails.
Grinders, also sometimes called dremels after the most popular brand, allows you to file down the nail rather than cutting straight into it with clippers.
Clipping can be challenging if you aren’t very experienced with dog nails. It is so easy to cut too deep and cut into your dog’s quick (the dark part of the nails), which causes them a lot of pain.
It can also leave them with trauma, which means they will put up a fight the next time you come after them with the clippers.
Grinders are also great if your dog has extra thick nails, which means they are just too hard to cut into with clippers.
Anyone who is nervous about cutting their dog’s nails or doesn’t have steady hands will probably prefer a grinder to clippers.
Grinders also allow you to smooth out and round the edges, ensuring your dog isn’t left with sharp claws that cut into your floors or your skin.
But grinders come with challenges too. First, they create quite a bit of odor and dust while working, which can result in a clean-up job (which is why most of our recommendations also have features to manage this).
The other big challenge is the noise of the grinder. Some dogs don’t like this loud whirring noise on principal, much like they don’t like the sound of the vacuum cleaner. And if they have had a bad experience with a grinder, you can expect that fear to be quadrupled.
This is why it is worth investing in a quiet grinder. Not only is it good for your ears, but it will go a long way toward reducing your dog’s fear of the situation.
Tips For Grinding Your Dog’s Nails
But even if you go with a quiet nail grinder with a nice feature for catching and cleaning up dust, you need to use the grinder properly. Here’s what we recommend.
First, as with any new toy, you should get your dog accustomed to the tool before you dive in and start using it.
Start by showing them the grinder, and give them a small reward for spending time with the tool. You can also place treats near the grinder, encouraging them to have a sniff around the tool.
Once they seem happy with the inert tool, you can hold it in your hand and turn it on and off quickly.
When they manage to stay close to you and stay calm, they deserve a reward. Gradually keep the grinder on for longer periods of time until they become more or less happy to be around the sound of the tool.
Bear in mind that this might take a few weeks.
When you are ready to start grooming, go slow. Don’t expect them to stay for a long nail grinding session.
Start by just removing a small amount of the nails so they can get used to the experience and realize it isn’t that bad. And, of course, always reward them for their cooperation after.
While you are grinding, you need to hold your dog’s foot firmly so it doesn’t move around, but don’t grip it too tightly as to cause them discomfort.
Start by grinding across the bottom of the nail, and then carefully work in from the tip of the nail.
Only hold the grinder against the nail for a second or two at a time. Both the grinder and the nail can get hot very quickly, which can be another source of discomfort for your dog.
Also, remember to be careful of their hair; if it gets caught in the grinder, it is going to cause them a lot of pain. Try covering the hair on the foot with old pantyhose to act as a barrier between the hair and the grinder.
While grinding, be careful of the nail dust flying around. You especially don’t want to breathe it in or have it go into your eyes.
Many grinders come with features that capture most of the nail dust while you work for you to dispose of later.
If you feel the nail getting hot while you are working, it is time to stop and take a break. This can cause major discomfort to your dog.
For more general information about keeping a labrador well-groomed, read out guide.
Are Dog Nail Grinders Better Than Clippers?
Grinders are often a better choice for dealing with dog nails, especially if your dog has thick nails that are difficult to cut with clippers or dark nails that can obscure the quick.
However, grinding is time-consuming, and the process can be unnecessarily drawn out if your pup has fine nails that can be dealt with quickly with a few snips of the clippers.
If you do prefer clippers to grinders, check out our recommendations for the best ones.
Does Grinding A Dog’s Nails Hurt Them?
Grinders are designed to function at a slow enough speed that they don’t hurt your dog when vibrating against their nails. But you need to be careful to use them properly to not hurt your pup.
This means protecting the rest of their foot, going slow, and not doing too much at any one time.
Do Long Nails Hurt Dogs?
It can be painful for your dog if you let their nails grow too long. Walking around on long nails can do damage to the tendons in your dog’s feet, which can, in turn, lead to deformities if left unchecked.
Can You Use Human Nail Grinders On Dogs?
It is best not to use human nail designed products on dogs because they are the wrong shape to work with dogs’ nails.
This means it is easier for something to go wrong, such as cutting the quick or accidentally pinching their skin.
How Often Should Your Grind Your Dog’s Nails?
Most dogs need to have their nails cut once or twice a month. You will know when it is time to get to work on them as you will hear them clicking against the ground while they are walking.
Nail grinders are a great tool for safely and effectively keeping your dog’s nails groomed, but the loud noise that many of them make can send some dogs running.
But, many companies have started to produce grinders that are quiet, which means it is easier to keep your dog at ease during a process that is rarely fun.
Do you use a grinder for your dog’s nails?
How do they react?
Share your experiences with the community in the comments section below.
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