How I Do a Nail-Quick Prick on My Dog


I developed this technique on Cinder, my Elkhound puppy. She has juvenile onset diabetes and it manifested when she was about 8 weeks old.  Since she is so young, it is very important for me to keep her diabetes as well controlled as possible. This means frequent BG testing -usually four times a day.   

I use a nail grinder to keep her nails short.  I grind the nails down to but not into the quick.  Even on dark nails you can see the color change between the nail and the quick.  Sometimes you will grind into the quick and a drop of blood will appear, but that's ok.  Holding a kleenex against the nail for a minute will stop the bleeding.  Nail grinders are easy to learn to use - but may present some problems for dogs that are noise sensitive. 

Before starting the BG test, gather all the supplies together: lancet, meter, test strip, kleenex or cotton ball.

I hold the lancet in my hand and pick the quick until it starts bleeding.  Use your meter as instructed and obtain the BG sample.  After you have obtained the sample, press some kleenex against the nail until the bleeding stops. This should just take a few seconds, but if the bleeding continues, hold the tissue there until it stops. 

There are 18 nails and I have used every one with good results. 

Cinder is a wonderful little girl and because she associates testing with eating she is very good about letting herself get tested. You can read more about Cinder's diabetes management

--Contributed by Majie and Cinder 

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Updated October 2000
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