You know, I’ve got no problem with someone trying to make a buck. I also don’t mind receiving an email about a new product for pets (and I get zillions). But I definitely draw the line when someone tries to sell me a product over and over again. It’s just not cool anymore—it’s spam.

You know the emails I mean…the ones about penile implants (as if I could accommodate one) or about Viagra (puh-lease!). I don’t know what I ever did to receive these—except maybe hitting the site a few too many times by accident (way back when it was a porn site and not the site for the American Animal Hospital Association).

I kind of expect this kind of tacky hard sell (pardon the pun) from sellers in the sex trade—after all, they have no squeaky clean reputations to preserve. But when it comes to pet products and services we expect a little softer treatment, don’t we?

Such has clearly not been the case with the PediPaws product. It’s been so ubiquitously foisted upon my clients that I’m constantly bombarded with questions about this nail-grinding tool’s efficacy.

In case you’re one of the few who’s managed to live thus far free of the Pedi-Paws propaganda, let me inform you: The PediPaws is a device marketed as an easier-than-ever way to trim our pets’ toenails. It works just like the all-purpose, cordless Dremel tool you can get at any hardware store (and on Amazon for $21.88)—with fewer features (sans plastic guard that supposedly makes it “foolproof”).

Here's the Dremel version as seen on Amazon:

And here's the PediPaws from their official, "As Seen on TV!" website:

Apparently, it’s advertised heavily on TV. PediPaws ads are plastered liberally within periodicals. The Web is crawling with it. And if you happen to be on their email list…you’re in trouble. You’ll get lots of emails touting the revolutionary nature of this product—I promise.

Because I was so barraged with questions from my clients on the incredibly well-marketed PediPaws, I decided to cough up $19.99 and have the thing delivered. Here are the questions I was now able to answer after using it for a week:

Q. At this price, the PediPaws is almost two bucks cheaper than the Dremel product, but is it any better?

Nope. I still prefer my Dremel for its versatility. But then, I’m a crafty girl with a penchant for power tools that serve multiple purposes.

Q. Is the Pedi-Paws any safer than the Dremel?

Ummm…you sort of have to work hard to hurt yourself with a Dremel tool but I guess the PediPaws might be considered safer for the pet than a Dremel if you’re a very clumsy person.

Q. Is the PediPaws any safer for its “gentle grinding mechanism” than the standard claw-clippers?

It IS harder to hit a gusher with the PediPaws but that doesn’t mean you can’t draw blood readily with excessively exuberant use.

Q. And most importantly to most owners: Will my pet accept it just like those sweet pets I see on TV?

Sorry to burst your bubble—but no. Most pets who resent their paws being handled will not take to it kindly.

Q. Will YOUR pet like the PediPaws way any better than the standard method?

Maybe. But probably not by much.

Q. Is the PediPaws worth a try if I’m scared to clip my pet’s toenails for fear of making them bleed?

Probably. It would be especially useful for those owners who never train their dogs to sit for a clipping out of fear of hurting them. I’d think that inexperienced owners of young pets might be especially inclined to accept the PediPaws method more readily.

Overall, the tool seems superfluous to me. After all, the Dremel’s already out there and it’s a great product. Furthermore, the PediPaws feels a little chintzy in terms of quality and durability when you compare it to the Dremel. The Dremel just seems like a more solid, well-built tool (I’ve had mine for almost ten years). And its makers aren’t slamming my email inbox with spam—another big plus.

Nonetheless, I’m happy to have shelled out my $19.99. If I hadn’t, how then would I be able to show my clients what they’re not missing? And how else would I be able to bring you this potentially enlightening post?