Tips on Grooming your Dog
Dog grooming is very important for your dog’s physical and mental health. Not only will the coat be shiny, but your dog will be left smelling nice as well. It will also give the two of you some quality time together. Praise and reward your dog. After all, this is a team effort! Some tips for proper grooming practices:
Brushing your dog:
• Let your dog smell the comb or brush before the grooming starts. With a reassuring voice, trust is instilled in the dog. Brush the coat daily to remove dirt. It also prevents tangles from occurring and keeps the skin clean and free from irritation. Always brush in the direction of the hair growth.
• Begin brushing from the head, and move in the direction of the tail and legs. Legs should be give special attention, since often the hair tangles there the most, if the fur is long.
• For a dog who resists brushing, you can try treats and plenty of praise to train it in grooming exercises. Just remember not to overfeed it!
• Puppies have short attention-spans, so the grooming of a puppy should be short. With calming words, the puppy will get used to this action and will look forward to it.
• Select a routine for grooming your dog. After a walk, when the dog is relieved and calm, is the best time.
• Groom your long-haired dog every day. Short-haired dogs can be groomed twice a week.
• Match the brush to your dog’s coat type. Use a curved wire slicker or pin brush for long haired breeds (such as Lhasa Apsos and Old English Sheepdogs), a regular wire slicker on medium or short coats with dense undercoat (Terriers and German Shepherds ) and a mitt with smooth-coated breeds (Labrador Retrievers and Basset Hounds).
• Spray on coat conditioner such as mink oil before brushing. This helps to loosen knots in long-haired breeds.
• Badly matted, short coats should be clipped. Let them grow out. By doing this, your dog can be spared the pain and irritation of hours of detangling.
Trimming Dog Nails:
Dogs that get a lot of exercise on rough surfaces like a terrace or a road will not have claws that need trimming at all. This is because the nails naturally trim down due to rough usage. It makes sense if you think about it - after all, who cuts their nails in the wild?
However if your dog's nails are growing it is perfectly possible to give them a regular trim.
• Trim nails of the dogs once a month using clippers designed specifically for dogs. Keep a small bottle of blood-clotting powder by your side, in case of an accidental injury.
• To cut the nails, take your dog's paw gently in your hands. Shorten nails till just behind the point at which the nail begins to curve downward to avoid injury.
• Trim the dewclaw too, if your dog has them. (They are located on the inside of each front leg, just above the paw)
Cleaning Dog Ears:
• To avoid ear infections and permanent hear loss in your dog, check his ears regularly. The inside skin and the flaps should be pale pink. With the Shar-pei, extra care must be taken, as the ears a small and prone to infection. With this breed, clean between the wrinkles too, as it can get mouldy and infected as well.
• Clean the canals and flaps using a cotton ball moistened with little mineral oil or warm water.
Cleaning Dog Teeth:
Advice varies on how often you should brush your dogs teeth, or whether you need to at all. A vet can advise you on what is best for your particular dog.
However what is generally true is that smaller breeds of dogs are more prone to plaque tartar on their teeth. This can lead to gingivitis and gum infections, which can lead to many health issues throughout the body.
In fact it is safe to say that teeth cleaning is the most important grooming of all.
For smaller breeds, and those with a history of teeth issues, it is strongly recommended to brush the teeth of your dog using pet toothpaste at least twice a week. The small toothbrush with soft bristles is best for it.We won't claim this is an easy task, and it may take patient and determination for your dog to accept teeth cleaning.
It is best to bathe your dog from time to time. How often again depends on the breed and the nature of the coat.
However when the coat becomes very greasy and doggy-odor becomes powerful, or of course filthy, it is bath time.
Brush and detangle your dog’s coat before bathing. Always use a specialized pet shampoo. Human products would be too harsh for your dog's skin.