Updated: Aug 16, 2019
Part of your responsibility as a pet owner is to keep your pet well-groomed. Grooming your pet is great for bonding with your pet, and regular brushing helps to reduce the amount of shedding around your house. It is also hygienic and helps to keep them healthy, looking and feeling good. However, it can be difficult to know where to start, and what type of grooming to prioritise, so I’ve put together my top 10 grooming tips to help you begin.
1. Do it regularly.
Short smooth haired dogs should be brushed once per week but longer haired dogs and some curly coated dogs need brushed daily. If done regularly it keeps it a small, manageable task. The longer you leave grooming your pet, the more difficult and time consuming it becomes. Simply brushing your pet’s fur (with a specifically designed brush or comb) and cleaning around their eyes and mouth area on a weekly basis is a good way to start.
2. Make sure your pet is relaxed.
This way they will enjoy it more and associate it with something good. Perhaps groom your pet at the end of a day, or after you have tired them out with exercise.
3.Start them young. This way they get used to it, and enjoy their visits to the salon more. Grooming gloves are a great way to do this as you can stroke your pet and brush their fur at the same time. Your pet will be used to the sensation of having their fur brushed without the need for a brush or comb.
4. Be gentle. Always hold the roots of the hair when brushing in case of knots and apply light pressure when shampooing.
5. Concentrate and put your glasses on if you need them.
This is especially important if you are cutting your pet’s claws. It can be dangerous to cut the claws too short, so do small amounts gradually and ensure that you are only taking off the white section of the claw. On a black nail, do not trim beyond the small white dot at the center of the nail bed.
6. Use only products designed for their exact purpose
Pets can have very sensitive skin, which means it is important that you only ever use products that have been approved for their exact needs. You should never use human products on your pet, and neither should you use cat products for dogs or vice versa.
7. Brush them out doors or on a white sheet.
Grooming your pet can create a lot of mess. The white sheet is particularly useful because you will be able to see any fleas or insects that come out as you brush your pets.
8. Make use of the close contact.
Check their skin, paws, eyes, ears and mouth for anything that looks out of the ordinary. You should feel for any lumps, cuts, redness or anything else that could be a sign that your pet needs medical attention.
9. Brush their teeth
It is important that you regularly clean their teeth with a specifically designed brush and toothpaste as part of their grooming routine. You can even get meaty tasting tooth paste!
10. Check with a professional if you are unsure.
If you have any concerns about the way you are grooming your dog, or any worries about something you have noticed whilst grooming, you should ask your vet for advice as soon as possible. With access to your pet’s records, they will be able to provide you with information tailored to your pet’s specific needs- medical or otherwise.