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Labrador multiple spilt nails
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Labrador multiple spilt nails

I have a 9 1/2 year old black lab who is mostly an indoor dog and has had both rear knees repaired in the
last two years.  Now we are having problems with him splitting nails and constantly licking (probably because they hurt)  A dew claw already split and fell off, and just a few minutes ago, he lost a rear toe nail. When  Igot down to look at it, I see that he has a nail on each front paw that is lifted up, exposing what looks like a bird claw.  It's just a tiny claw that was probably inside the bigger one.  Dakota is generally an indoor dog, or runs on grass.  Could the nails simply not get enough wear to keep them short? Fungal infection?  He is well cared for and gets only a few table scraps when my wife gets soft, always on Frontline and Interceptor, and basically eats Nutro food and Milkbone treats.  
I am taking him to the vet in the morning and he is thinking trimming the nails or sedating Dakota and removing the nails completely... THoughts?????????
Thank you
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Your vet will probably suspect Lupus, which is an autoimmune disease that can affect claw growth, and skin, and can occur in any age dog, but generally surfaces in middle age and older dogs.  A treatment of tetracycline, and Niacin may help.  There may also be secondary bacterial or fungal invaders that will also have to be addressed.  If Tetracycline and niacin or niacinamide are ineffective, than a stronger medication may be necessary.
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