Why Does My Dog Like to Eat My Nails

Why Does My Dog Like to Eat My Nails?

Why Does My Dog Like to Eat My Nails
Why Does My Dog Like to Eat My Nails

Why Does My Dog Like to Eat My Nails?Dog behavior can be quite bizarre, especially when you think about all the weird things they do that we humans don’t even think about doing—it’s almost as if they don’t think anything of it at all. 

For example, if you get up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom, why do you think your dog suddenly decides to follow you? And what would lead them to jump on your back and start licking your face as soon as you sit down on the couch?

Signs Your Dog Might Be Eating Your Nails

Not all dogs eat their owners’ fingernails, but those that do tend to focus on one particular finger—the pinky. If you have a puppy and you notice him gnawing at an extremity with great intensity, it might be because he’s bored or simply curious about what that thing is. 

But if you’ve ruled out these possibilities and noticed that your dog has been chewing off pieces of your nail, then there could be something else going on. 

First of all, make sure it isn’t a medical issue; many illnesses can cause dogs to chew on themselves (and often their owners), so if your pet seems lethargic or weak in any way, take him to see his vet immediately. 

Also, consider whether your dog is teething; puppies are notorious for chewing on things when they first get teeth, as well as when they’re getting ready to shed them. So, if you just got a new puppy or recently had her spayed/neutered, check in with her vet just to be safe. However, even though these are common reasons for dogs eating their owners’ nails, sometimes it doesn’t mean anything at all. It could just be your dog being weird! 

And that’s okay too. Dogs will do some pretty strange things from time to time, like rolling around in dead animals or barking incessantly at nothing, and nail-eating is just another example of how different our pets are from us. As long as your dog doesn’t seem ill and she isn’t hurting herself by chewing excessively, then don’t worry too much about it—it may just be a habit she picked up along the way.

ALSO READ: Why Does My Dog Sit in The Corner? 8 Possible Causes + Remedy

Why Do Dogs Eat Nails

You might think that dogs eat their own nails or yours out of boredom, but that isn’t always true. Some dogs will chew on their paws as a way to self-soothe when they are stressed or in pain. 

So, if you notice that your dog is chewing on his paws and he doesn’t have any obvious injuries, it could be a sign of something more serious going on inside his body. 

It could also be a sign that he is bored and needs more exercise and mental stimulation. If you notice that your dog has been chewing on his feet excessively, talk to your vet about possible underlying causes. Your vet can help rule out other medical conditions and give you advice on how to best manage your pup’s behavior. He may recommend some different types of toys or extra playtime outside so your pup can burn off some energy and reduce stress. 

He may also suggest using a bitter spray on your dog’s paws to deter him from chewing. Ask your vet what options would work best for you and your dog! 

If you suspect that your dog has an underlying medical condition causing excessive paw chewing, schedule an appointment with your veterinarian. 

Your vet can perform a physical exam and run blood tests to check for internal problems like hypothyroidism or kidney disease. These conditions often present with symptoms similar to those of paw chewing (including hair loss), so it’s important to get them ruled out by a professional before making any changes to your dog’s diet or routine.

Why Are Nails Hard For Dogs To Digest

Dogs eat everything they can get their paws on, but if you’ve noticed some of what they’re chewing is distinctly harder than most food—like your fingernails—chances are pretty good that he’s snacking on them. 

Why do dogs crave human nails so much? It all comes down to chemistry and behavior, a California veterinarian says. 

The chemical composition of dog nail polish (and human nail polish) contains ingredients called formaldehyde resins, which are sweet-tasting to dogs and help prevent fungal infections in pets’ paws. 

The hard part of your nails (the keratin) isn’t easily digestible for Fido; it requires more time to break down than other foods, making it an ideal snack for pooches with lots of time on their hands—or rather, lots of time between meals. 

As for why dogs go after human nails specifically, it may be because we pick at our cuticles and trim our nails regularly. If there’s one thing dogs hate, it’s being left out of anything humans are doing… including filing our nails! Of course, there could be other reasons, too: Maybe your dog has a favorite color or pattern on your manicure that she just can’t resist!

How To Stop My Dog From Eating My Nails

Before you get too worried about whether or not your dog is eating your nails, think about it for a second: he might just be trying to help. 

If you have long fingernails and hate to trim them, he may simply be nipping at them because they’re protruding from your fingers and look like tasty treats to him. In fact, some dogs are drawn to nail clippings because of their smell. So, if you find that your dog has eaten part of one of your nails—or all of one—don’t worry; there’s probably nothing wrong with him. Just keep an eye on his behavior and make sure he doesn’t eat any more. 

And if he does start gnawing on your digits, take steps to protect yourself. For example, wear gloves when you know he’ll be around.


It’s common for dogs to be drawn to human body parts for a snack, but it’s not just toes or fingers they’re after—sometimes it’s fingernails!

Sources on Why Does My Dog Like to Eat My Nails?