Ever trim your guineas nails?


9 Years
Oct 27, 2010
Cement, OK
This evening as my guineas were coming in for the night I noticed 1 cock had LONG nails. I am talking scary movie type long.... They are curled out to the side & look awful. I know I have handled this bird @ the end of summer & was shocked to see his nails.

Should I attempt to trim them? None of the other birds have bad nails, guess this guy doesn't scratch in the ground??? I know I have 1 dog that has to have his nails cut bt my other 3 keep their nails filed away without any human help.
I figured the biggest challenge will be catching him! DH will be thrilled to know we have to trim the birds nails. I can already hear the objections! Chickens are much easier & catch & handle. Why are guineas so darn strong? I never have a hard time holding a chicken, guineas are another story! I now cover their heads with a towel if I need to hold them for any tlc.
I do love using my chicken net! However, I had one get their nail stuck in the net & the whole thing ripped off, never grew that nail back.

When I wrap them in a towel I stick them under my arm tightly. Works well & the towel calms them.
Yes you can........ But last time i tried to trim this mean rooster's nails, he attacked me and injured my leg so badly i couldn't walk for two days.

Any guinea is easier to handle than that roo. I sold him.... hope he becomes soup.
I have a few older GUineas that grow the unruly toenails like that, sometimes they break off naturally, sometimes they get ripped off and there's blood everywhere

Catch them off the roost at night, tuck him under your arm like a football (with his head facing to the back,and downward a little so they go docile), then grab both feet and have hubby trim the toe nail. Be careful not to cut too much off at once, or it will bleed. If something happens (like a squirming, kicking bird not cooperating well) and it does bleed, I use cornstarch or Wonder Dust (for horses) to get the bleeding to stop.

Super glue can work too if it's just a little blood, but doesn't do much good if the bird's toe is dripping pretty fast, plus add in the drying time and the risk of getting glue everywhere... not the best fix, lol but I have done it.

Worst case scenario if the bird is really bleeding, and I don't recommend this unless you have a real good firm grip on the bird and both of it's feet, good lighting and a steady handed helper is to heat up a flat blade screw driver on your stove or with a small propane torch and carefully and quickly touch the red hot screwdriver tip to the end of the toenail to cauterize the dripping toenail, it will sizzle, smoke a little and you will actually see the toenail melt a tiny bit. (A stained glass soldering iron with a wide tip works good for this... I've done it several times, just be quick).

Hope that helps!

ETA: It's a good idea to dip the toe in some antiseptic once you cauterize it, or dab some on witha Q-tip... Blu-Kote works good, just don't get any on you, it STAINS everything a dark purple, lol.
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LOL hutzpah ... I had to look that one up

I actually learned how to deal with bad toenails back in my teenage years from an older friend of mine that raised Amazon Parrots and Macaws. She also took in unwanted/rescued birds from people that were too loud, too destructive or self mutilating themselves etc. Most of the rescues or unwanted birds she took in had badly neglected toenails, so bad they could not even grip the perch or the nails were spiraling around and digging into flesh of other toes and injuring the birds. I helped her with the toenails quite a bit using the cauterization method, and we were pretty efficient at it. A quick snip, sizzle and a dab of antiseptic and they were good to go. We even took down some spurs on a couple nasty game fowl roosters she had so they'd stop beating her dogs up so bad, lol.

So... I just applied all that experience to Guinea nails when needed
Might be a little painful to the bird, but if you think about how much pain and bloodloss is involved with them getting that nail caught in something and ripping it completely off...
They are way better off if it's taken care of by the owner, whatever the method. I trim if I can, but sometimes you just need to cauterize.... or you can always run the bird to the vet so he/she can cauterize it and charge you $100 for it
Got the nails trimmed. I caught him, held him DH trimmed away. We will have to trim them more in the up coming wks. I didn't want to take too much off, but was prepared to stop the bleeding in case we did.

I always have the stop bleeding stuff you find in the bird section. I have had to use it on my dogs nails, works really well if the nail starts bleeding. The only real bad bleeder I had was the bird whose nail was ripped off when I caught it with the net. Seemed to bleed for days, but think she just kept injuring it again.

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