Trimming your dogs nails may seem like a daunting task, but is easier that you would think. Plus, if your pets let you cut their nails, it means you don't have to spend money paying someone else to do it.
The biggest thing to remember is to take things slowly. You won't be able to go from a dog that doesn't like his/her paws touched to a calm, complacent pup overnight. Prime your pet for nail trimmings by touching their feet and paws gently during play time and relaxation time, to help them associate your touch with good things.
Familiarize yourself with canine nail anatomy by watching the above video from Drs Foster and Smith. Knowing what you are cutting and what to watch out for is important. The quick on a dog's nail is like the pink portion of your own nails; it is where the blood supply runs and it is very unpleasant if this gets damaged/nicked.
Treats, treats, treats! Both training and distraction aide, treats can make difficult spa clients into happy, and calm pups. Try distracting your dog with peanut butter in a kong; they love the motivation, and you don't have to try and hit a moving target.
Enlist assistance. Family members and friends can really help relax an anxious pet, and prevent the pet from moving all over the place.
Do not yell at your pet if he/she is "misbehaving" or not cooperating. Doing this will only make your pet feel worse and increase the likelihood of bad behavior in the future.
If your pet becomes too much too handle, rememver your veterinarian and groomer have more experience, and are always there too help. The smartest owners are the ones who recognize and acknowledge their own limits, knowing when and who to ask for help.