Pet Owner's Guide to Dog Grooming
Dog grooming is not simply a matter of good looks, its also a matter of good health. Coat care is obviously important, but other aspects of grooming include teeth, nails, eyes and ears.
Dog Grooming - Getting Started
Regular grooming is important to a dogs overall health, comfort and well-being. Dogs are not naturally as fastidious as cats and need help from their human companions in the care-taking area – especially if they are a long-haired or thick-coated breed. Even so-called hairless breeds, such as the Chinese Crested and Peruvian Inca Orchid, need regular skin care. There are four general areas of a dog that need routine attention: the coat, nails, ears and mouth. It doesn’t take a great deal of time to learn how to care for each of these areas. With a little practice, most owners easily learn how to keep their dogs well-groomed. Fortunately, most dogs like the process– especially if they are groomed on a regular basis starting when they are puppies. Owners should start grooming their dogs in short sessions, using lots of praise and treats to make it thoroughly enjoyable for their pet.
Whether and when to groom a dog’s coat depends on the type of coat it has, the length of the coat and why it is being groomed. Canine coats range from fine and thin to coarse and dense. Some dogs have curly coats, some have wiry coats and others have practically no coat at all. Coats also vary widely in length, irrespective of coat type. Dogs with long coats and those that are prone to
Many dogs wear their nails down through regular activity on rough surfaces. However, some dogs need help from their owners several times a month to keep their nails well-maintained and prevent damage to carpeting, floors, people, other pets and even the dog itself. Show dogs have their nails trimmed more frequently. Dogs regularly used for hunting, tracking, sledding or other strenuous outdoor activities may be an exception. Rough, long nails can interfere with a dog’s
Most dogs should have their ears cleaned every few weeks. This is especially important for breeds with hairy or hanging ears, such as spaniels and retrievers, because their ears block airflow through the ear canal and can trap moisture, providing a perfect environment for bacterial overgrowth. Dogs living in especially warm, humid environments also may need more regular attention to their ears. Dogs typically enjoy getting their ears rubbed and cleaned, although there certainly are
Many things can cause a dog to suffer discomfort and disease in their mouth, including lodged foreign objects, abscesses, broken teeth, jaw injuries, lacerations, electrical or chemical burns, infections, string or rubber bands around the tongue base, tumors and periodontal (gum) disease. Changes in eating behavior and excessive drooling are two of the most common signs of mouth problems. Gum disease is a huge problem in domestic dogs. Gingivitis is a reversible inflammatory condition of
Although there are no strict recommendations on how often you should bathe your dog, bathing frequency will depend on whether or not your dog needs a bath, and on such variables as the breed of dog, the kind of shampoo you are using, and how sensitive you are to the smells associated with dogs.Most dogs usually never really require a bath. Baths can be given as often as is necessary (i.e. if your dog gets