Dog Grooming to Keep Your Best Friend Healthy
By Cat Archer
Dog grooming is absolutely essential in maintaining your dog’s health. Grooming includes regular brushing and combing to remove dead hair, skin and general debris, bathing and nail trimming as necessary, as well as looking after your dog’s ears, eyes and mouth.
Regular dog grooming will provide your dog with not only a shinier coat but also a healthier lifestyle, plus it gives you the opportunity of spending some ‘one on one’ time with your dog. It is essential that you train your pet by dog grooming him in his earlier years with a gentle approach, as this way he will not worry when you continue to groom him as he gets older – he will know what to expect. Often dogs can look on the grooming routine as another way of you petting him. Combing and brushing will care for your dog’s coat but it is equally important that you attend to his other body parts, like the ears, toes, eyes and the mouth.
Dog grooming will have to be applied in a different way, depending on the breed of dog that you have, so you need to make sure that you research the right way for your dog. We have listed below the general dog grooming methods used, but you need to make sure if your dog has special grooming needs, then you abide by them.
Bathing is a very large part of dog grooming. It is wise to bathe your pet once every two months or so, or as frequently as needed. Brush you pet’s coat well before each bathe so that you elimate dead skin, hair and knots from his coat.
To bathe your dog:
· For secure footing, place a rubber mat or a bath towel in your bath tub or sink. Make sure you are careful not to let water into your dogs ears – it can be a good idea to secure the dog’s ears with cotton balls so you make sure that you are preventing the water from entering these openings.
· Use warm water to rinse your dog. If you have a spray hose available then this can be best to use, but do make sure that the nozzle of the hose is kept close to your pet’s body. Never ever spray the animal directly on his face, as this is likely to scare or irritate him, and he will not want you to bathe him again.
· Use only specially formulated shampoos that are only made for dogs. Using small amounts, start from head to tail but avoid getting the shampoo on your dog’s eyes. Be sure to clear from dirt the dog’s rectum, and other body parts like those under the chin, behind the ears and between the dog’s toes.
· Then rinse your dog with warm water, make sure that no shampoo is left on his coat.
. Remember a dog’s instinct is to shake when they are wet, so stand clear!
· Lastly, pat your animal dry with a bath towel or a hair dryer.
It is also a very necessary part of dog grooming to ensure that your dog’s coat is kept clean. Make this part of your dog’s daily dog grooming routine, so that his coat is thoroughly brushed each day. This assures that his coat is kept from dirt, and to get rid of dead skin, old hair and other debris that finds its way onto a dog’s coat. A dog grooming procedure like brushing may spread the dog’s natural skin oils all through the coat, which can help to keep the dog’s skin form irritation and may further prevent his coat from tangling. This does not only apply to dogs having long coats but also short-haired dogs benefit from regular brushing.
Depending on your own dog, but generally around once a month, your dog’s nails should be trimmed. Use a specially designed nail trimmer or clipper that has been designed for your dog breed, also provide a blood-clotting powder in case his skin tissue is cut. You may also use scissors for this form of dog grooming. If you don’t feel confident with this procedure then leave it to your vet to do when necessary.
Is also an important part of dog grooming. If not properly addressed, your pet could well develop an ear infection, which in turn may lead to permanent hearing loss. The symptoms for an ear infection are constant scratching, ear redness and head shaking. Your dog grooming specialist or vet must deal with severe cases of ear infections in your dog.
Give your dog the specially formulated bones that are designed to help combat bad breath. Also try and get him into the habit of letting you clean his teeth for him. You can buy beef flavored toothpaste and a doggie size toothbrush just for him.
Look after your dog – he is worth it.
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