Dog Grooming Tips
Grooming is a great way to bond with your dog and keep them happy, healthy and clean. It can be done at home or at a professional groomer’s shop.
Brushing your dog’s coat keeps their skin and hair healthy by removing old, damaged and tangled hair. It also ventilates their coat, allowing it to grow and breathe. It helps the skin to produce fresh blood cells and prevents the build-up of greasy oils.
The grooming process can be stressful for some dogs, so it’s important to be careful and don’t overdo it. If your dog’s fur becomes excessively matted, it can cause them to become painful and suffer from skin problems, like hot spots.
Regularly checking and removing mats from your dog’s fur can save them from discomfort and pain. They can also be a source of infection, so it’s worth taking them to a professional groomer at least once a year for a thorough check-up and comb-out.
Nail trims: Keeping your dog’s nails at an ideal length is also essential to their health and wellbeing. Long nails can hurt and snag hardwood floors and furniture, so trimming them regularly is a good idea.
Ears: Depending on the breed of your dog, their ears may need to be trimmed to a specific length. Clippers are recommended for this, but you can also use sheers. Make sure to carefully comb down the hair so you don’t cut your dog’s ear.
Eyes: Using a damp cotton ball or tissue, wipe your dog’s eyes to remove excess dirt and tear stains. This is especially important if your dog has sensitive skin or allergies.
Teeth: It’s vital to keep your dog’s teeth in good condition, so having them brushed at least once a week is recommended. This will ensure that they don’t develop tartar, which can lead to painful infections or tooth loss in the future.
It’s best to do this at a groomer, but you can do it yourself. You can even use a special pet-friendly toothpaste to help them get accustomed to having their teeth cleaned.
Be praising and rewarding while you groom your dog to help them associate the grooming process with positive experiences. This will help them to be calm and relaxed during their grooming sessions and avoid negative associations, which can lead to more stress and anxiety in the future.
Give them breaks during their grooming session as needed. This will allow them to relax and take their time settling into the routine.
Don’t use harsh verbal corrections or rewards while grooming your dog as this can actually exacerbate their nervousness. You’re likely to see them lick their lips, flutter their eyes and dangle their tail in fear, so be gentle with your handling and don’t force them or push them.
Staying still can be difficult for some dogs, so it’s a good idea to have treats at hand to reward them for staying calm. They may also need to be told in a soothing, reassuring tone that it’s all going to be okay.