5 At-Home Dog Grooming Tips
Updated: Mar 18, 2019
We all know our dogs can get a little stinky at times. Whether they played with the neighbor dog or went paddle boarding, our fur babies might need a little sprucing up in between trips to the groomer. Here are 5 tips to help you, your dog and your groomer in between visits.
1. Brush your dog
I know, I know, you brush your dog. Groomers can tell when you don't brush your dog, or maybe you might not be brushing properly. The best and universal tools to brush most coat types are a slicker brush and a comb. Both are inexpensive. A slicker brush will help remove tangles, while a comb will help you find any tangles and matts you might have missed. Hold the matts with your fingers and brush them with the slicker brush. When your done, use the fine tooth comb to brush through to the skin. Its very important that you brush all the way to the skin. Often times people will only brush the top layer of hair while the hair closer to the skin continues to matt. When this happens sometimes the groomer has no other option but to shave your dog short. Your dog and your groomer will be much happier!
2. Bathing and Drying
When your dog gets too stinky to handle and your grooming appointment is still a while away, its ok to bathe your dog. Regular bathing helps reduce odor, reduce dander and shedding and can help with skin problems. It is important to find a shampoo that suites your dogs skin and coat type. Your local pet store will have some great options. When bathing, do not get water in the ears or eyes. Water can cause bacteria to grow in the ear canal causing and ear infection. If the shampoo is not tearless, it will sting in your pup's eyes. Make sure to rinse very well. Did you know that most of the time the dog may not be having an allergic reaction to the shampoo you used, but you may not of rinsed well enough. That can make your dog really itchy! After the bath, it is very important to dry your dog. If you do not, the water will cause any matts that have formed to become much tighter. Also, any dampness in the coat will cause the coat to matt. If you take your dog swimming or even out in the rain, dry them. Drying is a very important part of the grooming process, especially for long and double coated dogs. After you have dried your fur baby thoroughly, brush them. You will find that if you try to brush your dog wet, it is much harder. Oil, dirt and water act like hairspray in the coat and will hold together any matts and undercoat that need to come out.
Groomers hear it all the time, "My dogs nails are sooo long!". We can only cut your dogs nails so short without making them bleed. If you don't feel comfortable cutting your dogs nails at home, we can to it. However, we cannot make your dogs nails recede without consistent and regular nail cutting. The best way to get your dogs nails to recede is to use the nail grinder every three days. The nail grinder is an amazing tool to help the quick recede. When you use the grinder, you are able to grind the nail a little farther than you can clip them. When the quick is exposed to air, it dies a little bit. So every three days is not enough for the nail to grow over the quick. The quick will slowly recede if you are on top of it.
4. Waterless Shampoo
Waterless shampoo is a wonderful product. It can help freshen up the coat and remove oil. Make sure to use waterless shampoo specifically formulated for dogs. Dogs have a different pH level on their skin so dog-specific grooming products are essential. When using waterless shampoo, use sparsely and use as directed. If not used properly or it is used too much, it can leave a film on the coat. A film on the coat will make it matt easier and give dirt and debris more to "hold on to". Waterless shampoo does not replace a real bath though.
5. Go to the groomer
Groomers are trained and skilled in dog grooming. We see all types of dogs every day, and we see the well groomed and the scary. Every dog should see a professional groomer every four to six weeks, depending on the coat type. If you like Fluffy to be fluffy, two to four weeks is more ideal. Groomers are not out to shave every dog but sometimes it is necessary. Matting is uncomfortable and dangerous. We are here to help you and your dog. Remember to set standing appointments on your ideal schedule so you don't get behind on Fido's grooming.