Grooming For Dogs Archives

How Often Should My Dog Be Groomed?

Grooming isn’t just for the Poodles and Yorkies of the world. While small dogs with luxurious coats of hair and extravagant haircuts are generally what comes to mind when you think of grooming, in fact all dogs can benefit from a routine grooming program. How often your dog should be groomed depends on his breed, hair type, and activity level.

At it’s most basic level, grooming is the process of bathing the dog, trimming the coat, brushing out, clipping nails and generally cleaning and giving your dog a “spa day”. Grooming can be done at home or with a groomer, but it is important that your dogs various grooming needs be attended to on a regular basis.

Because coat care is only one part of the grooming process, even short hair dogs can greatly benefit from the occasional spa day. Short hair dogs may not require the extensive trimming or brushing that long hair dogs do, but they can still benefit from the other parts of the groom, such as nail trimming and brushing.

A Day Being Pampered

While each groomer has a different regime they follow, most basic grooming consists of the following steps:

Brush out- Before bathing or trimming, long hair dogs are brushed out, the undercoat carefully raked and dead hair thinned from the coat. Brushing has many health benefits to your dog. Regular brushing of all dogs, despite coat length or type, helps to keep the coat and skin healthy. Brushing also works to distribute the natural oils of the skin throughout the coat, promoting a healthier coat, and cleaner skin.

While you may bathe your dog at home regularly, most groomers utilize a bathing system. These systems are specially made to allow water and shampoo to penetrate even the thickest coats of hair, evenly spreading shampoo throughout the coat. Special hoses and water nozzles “massage” the soap throughout the coat, getting the coat cleaner than any hand wash could. In addition, the bathing systems are much faster than traditional bathing, shortening the time your pet may spend stressed out in the tub.

If your dog has long hair, or is prone to tangles or a dry coat, a coat conditioner may be used as a second step to the bathing process. Conditioners can help to manage the hair and make it softer, allowing for mats and tangles to be more easily removed, along with re-moisturizing the coat.

While in the bath, some groomers may take the opportunity to express your pets’ anal glands. The anal glands are two small sacks just inside your pets’ anus, and are filled with a foul smelling “scent fingerprint” that animals use to identify each other in the wild. Routine emptying of these sacs can help to prevent unwanted smells, as well as potential side effects from impacted or ruptured anal glands that go unemptied.

After bathing, a blower or dryer is used to dry the coat quickly and efficiently. The drying process also helps to further loosen up dead hair in the coat.

If your pet needs to be shaved or trimmed, once he is clean and dry, it’s time for the makeover! Depending on the breed of dog, and your preference, this can be anything from trimming a few hairs around the face and paws, to a complete shave down. Once trimming is complete, it’s time for another, more comprehensive brushing out. This is of special advantage to double-coated dogs, whose undercoat may continue to shed and as the process continues. A good, complete brushing at the groomers can make your brushing job at home much, much easier!

Long hair dogs tend to grow hair deep in the ear canal, and this hair can trap bacteria, causing irritation and ear infections. Your groomer will “pluck” this hair, and often do a cursory clean of the ears checking for anything abnormal. If ear discharge or redness is noticed, this can be relayed to you, so that you know that veterinary attention may be necessary to treat your dogs ear problem.

Finally, your groomer will clip your pets’ nails, and their skill and experience can often get them shorter than you can at home. A dremel tool may also be used, to help further shorten the nails, and blunt the edges to eliminate those sharp, newly cut nail scratches!

How often you should have your pet groomed depends on your dog, their coat type, and activity level. Longhaired dogs such as Poodles, Yorkshire Terriers and Maltese may require grooming as often as every other month, in order to maintain their coats. Cocker Spaniels and other dogs that routinely get cut back or shaved down may also need grooming this frequently. While thick coated dogs such as Collies and Shelties will not be getting shaved down while being groomed, they can greatly benefit from the special bathing systems, and comprehensive brushing they will receive, cutting down on shedding at home. Dogs that are active outdoors, and regularly pick up dirt, twigs and other natural things in their coats will obviously require more frequent grooming than their mostly indoor counterparts.

Short hair dogs, like Labradors, may only need a complete grooming once or twice a year. In between spa days, a nail trim and routine bathing at home may be all these need to stay clean and hygienic.

Whether done at home or with a groomer, a comprehensive grooming can be valuable in maintaining your dog’s basic health and happiness.

(Taken from http://www.professorshouse.com).

Why Do Dogs Shed?

shedding pug

If you are looking to become a dog owner then you must know that all dogs shed their coats. It’s a fact of life. Depending upon on the breed of dog or the climate they are in, a dog may not shed as much or may shed year round. There are many different contributing factors as to season the dog sheds his coat and how much a dog sheds.

Regular Shedding

No matter what breed you own, whether your dog is one that is considered to be a hypo-allergenic dog or if you have a year round shedder, all dogs shed. Regular shedding is the method by which your dog’s coat releases damaged or unhealthy hair and allows for the new healthy coat to grow in. Damage can occur from environmental factors, shampoos, dyes, or any number of other contributing elements. Your dog’s coat goes through various growth phases and it is the length of these various phases that determine how frequently your dog sheds. The four phases of hair growth are:

  • * Anagen is the phase of new hair growth.
  • * Catagen is a transition phase where the hair stops growing and the outer root sheath attaches to the hair
  • * Telogen is the resting phase where the hair doesn’t grow or shed.
  • * Exogen is where the hair falls out and the hair follicles move back into the anagen phase of hair growth.

Dogs that do not shed (Poodles), or those with coats that appear not to shed, are those dogs whose coats have longergrowth, transition and resting phases and have a brief shedding phase.

[affmage source=”amazon” results=”1″]Furminator[/affmage] Seasonal Shedding

Seasonal shedding happens during the transition from the colder months into the warmer, more temperate months. During this time, dogs go through an extended exogen, or shedding phase, of hair growth. The warmer weather triggers a reaction in the dog’s system, causing the hair follicles to release the heavier winter coat that many dogs develop.

Shedding Due to Health Issues

A dog may also have increased or excessive shedding due to a variety of health issues. If the dog is fed an improper diet, has a skin infection, or allergies and systemic infections then they can all cause your dog to lose his hair. It is important to see your veterinarian to determine the cause of the hair loss and implement a treatment to halt the excessive loss of coat.

The Importance of Grooming

One of the most important things you can do for your dog to help him maintain a healthy coat and good overall health is to properly groom his coat. Frequency is determined by the type of coat he has, as is the grooming tool used. Fortunately,  there are special dog grooming services available to help with the never-ending shedding. Grooming not only removes the hair that’s been shed and the environmental contaminants resting on the coat, but it also creates a time for bonding between you and your dog.

Regular grooming also allows you to see if there are problems with his skin or coat that may normally be hidden from sight. Learn more about dog grooming services and the amazing de-shedding tool called the “Furminator” at Mobile Dirty Dog Grooming.

Shedding is a natural process that is controlled by both breed and by external factors. Whether you have a Poodle whose coat sheds minimally or a Labrador Retriever whose coat sheds year round, keep in mind that this shedding process helps him to maintain a healthy skin and coat and in turn keeps him protected from environmental contaminants. A proper diet rich in essential fatty acids, regular dog grooming services and loving care all contribute to your dog’s beautiful coat, and just as important, his overall health.

From a Professional Mobile Dog Groomer

mobile dog groomerIt is vital to keep your dog healthy by paying regular attention to bathing, grooming and brushing which is why it’s a good idea to find a professional dog groomer. Even dogs with short hair will benefit from these essential grooming routines that are important to his health. You may be surprised to know that regular grooming does more than just make your dog look pretty and smell great. Here are the top reasons why it is medically necessary to regularly have your dog groomed so he stays healthy and feels his best.

The Better To See You With

When you keep your dog’s face free of long hair around the eyes you can prevent eye irritation and help him feel more comfortable. Many toy breed dogs, such as the shih tzu, Lhasa apso and poodle, have long hair that hangs in the eyes causing irritation and damage to the cornea. Check your dog to see if there are hairs lying on the eye. These longs hairs must be trimmed by a professional dog groomer or by calling a professional mobile dog groomer.The groomer knows how to safely trim around the eyes and face, and she can even draw the hair up into a bow to keep the eye area free of long hairs. NEVER use scissors or sharp objects around your dog’s eyes. Seek professional assistance.

Some dogs have a problem with drainage from the eyes.

Many toy breeds also suffer from drainage from the eyes that causes tear stains, which are dark discolorations under the eyes. This problem may have many causes. Check with your veterinarian to help rule out any medical conditions that can be solved. If the drainage is persistent, make sure you keep it wiped away. Skin and fur that stays constantly moist can discolor and become infected. To remove the discolored hair safely, call on a mobile dog groomer. She will use clippers to scoop out the hair and debris that can build up from the tear stains. This is an easy way to manage the buildup and your dog will also see better.

My, What Big Ears You Have

Those long floppy ears are endearing but they cover your dog’s ear canal creating a moist, warm environment that does not receive proper air circulation. This can cause your dog to suffer from chronic ear infections that can be difficult to cure and can re-occur. Cocker spaniels, shar-peis and golden retrievers are just a few of the breeds that suffer from this all too common problem. Infections that go unchecked can result in serious and painful ear disease. In addition, dogs such as Miniature Schnauzers and Poodles must have the hair that grows inside the ear canal plucked by a groomer. This hair can create buildup that leads to unwanted ear infections. Learn how to clean your dog’s ears to help prevent these problems. Your veterinarian can show you how to clean them properly and advise you on the use of an ear cleaning solution. Have your mobile dog groomer shave the hair from the inside of the pinna (the floppy part of the ear) to allow for air circulation, and gently remove any hair that may be growing in the ear canals. Once again, NEVER use scissors or sharp implements in or near the ears. A healthy ear should look and smell clean. Any foul odor, discharge or excessive scratching should be immediately investigated.

Say Cheese

Dental disease in dogs is common. Checking your dog’s mouth and teeth will help you spot trouble before it becomes a big problem. Your veterinarian can show you how to keep your dog’s teeth clean with brushes and toothpastes designed specifically for dogs. Your older dog may not think too much of dental care. If you can’t get him to accept having his teeth brushed, make it a regular habit to check his teeth for tartar, chipping or excessive wear, or any lump or bump that looks suspicious. Dental disease can be very painful and serve as a source of infection for the rest of the body, so check those teeth and tell your dog’s doctor if you find a problem.

Everybody Into the Tub

Most every dog will need a bath a few times a year. This need will vary depending on your dog’s lifestyle, breed and any skin problems he may have. Bathing helps remove old hair, dirt and oil from the skin. The physical action of being washed is pleasant to most dogs and it may make you aware of a lump or bump that may have appeared or changed suddenly. This is also a good time to check for parasites such as fleas and ticks. Dogs that swim in natural waterways such as lakes, ponds and rivers, or those lucky enough to visit the beach should be rinsed after every outing. There are a lot of different shampoos and conditioners for every type and color of dog. Your groomer or veterinarian can advise you if your dog has special needs. Be sure to protect your dog’s eyes with a little mineral oil or eye ointment before bathing.

Break out the Brush and Comb

Between baths, brushing and combing your dog will help keep the coat clean and free of hair mats. Mats can be irritating and cause skin disease under the hair. Longhaired dogs require everyday brushing to keep their coats healthy. To prevent matting, comb your dog first to detect any small tangles and then follow up with the brush. You should do this before and after the bath to prevent unwanted mats. Most dogs enjoy grooming and often wait eagerly to be combed. If your dog’s fur is badly matted, he may need to be shaved. This is a job for a mobile dog groomer. NEVER attempt to cut out hair mats with scissors at home; you may cut the skin as well if the mats are clinging to the skin. As your dog’s hair grows back, begin with daily brushing and combing to keep the new hair soft and tangle free. Your groomer can also recommend a spray conditioner to keep the coat shiny and soft.

Nails

By far the most dreaded grooming chore is trimming your dog’s nails. If you have a young dog, touch her feet and toes often to get her used to having her feet handled. Older dogs often are very frightened by the chore of nail trimming and may be completely uncooperative. Despite their protests, nail trimming is a must. Long overgrown nails often break at the base exposing the nail bed and they can get caught in soft bedding. Walking on long nails can be painful, aggravate arthritis and cause the toes to splay. Long nails can curve around and grow into the pads. A dog walking on overgrown nails is like you trying to walk in swim fins. Regular visits to your groomer will prevent overgrown nails.

Mentioning the Unmentionable

Lastly, there is your dog’s rear end. Most dog owners don’t make it a habit to check their dog’s bottom but it is an important place to look. Longhaired animals can get feces trapped in the hair surrounding the anus causing an obstruction. Have your groomer keep the sanitary area clipped short. Situated to the sides of the anus are two anal glands. These glands manufacture a foul smelling material that is normally expressed when your dog has a bowel movement. These glands can become painfully blocked and infected. Learn to recognize the sign of infection. Scooting is often a giveaway. Your veterinarian and groomer can help keep these sacs empty. And lastly, and most indelicately, your dog’s rear end is a place to attract parasites. It is easy to see fleas here, and those awful signs of a tapeworm infection, small white worms that look like grain of rice or cucumber seeds. Even the nicest dogs can get them. Have your veterinarian look at any suspicious life forms you find.

To Your Dog’s Health

As you can see, owning a dog requires much responsibility and careful attention to any sign of discomfort. Having a budget to regularly take care of your long or short-haired dog is a must if you are going to become a pet owner. Regular visits with a mobile dog groomer and veterinarian are important to the health of your new best friend.

The Importance of Dog Grooming

The Importance of Dog Grooming

Andrei Smith – from iheartpaws.com Dog grooming is very vital because the physical appearance of your dog influences the way he feels and the way we look at him as well. Remember, a clean dog is a happy and healthy dog! Dog grooming is also essential not only on your pet’s physical health but also his physiological and psychological well being. What your dog feels and how he acts depend on his physical state. If you’re dog is not properly groomed, he must be likely show some bad behaviors like excessive barking. By reading this article, you will see the importance of proper dog grooming. • Keeps your dog healthy. Taking care of your pet by giving him a good bath will eliminates germs and dirt that he got from playing outside. Clean dog equals healthy dog. • Your pet feels comfortable. Bathing with a rich lather using a great dog shampoo will remove dog and fleas from your pet’s skin. No more dry and itchy skin if your dog is free from harmful insects. And washing your dog can be made easy by using pet bath. • Trimming your dog’s nails will prevent the germs from accumulating inside of them. Also, trimmed nails will prevent scratch when your dog jumps over you and keeps your home furniture safe. • Brushing you dog’s hair regularly will keep it shiny and from building up. If you currently have long-haired breed dog, you must need to cut it or occasional clipping is needed to keep him look nice and neat. Keeping the hair short around his eyes will give him a better view. • Boost his energy. Clean dog means a happy dog. Just like human, your pet needs to be cleaned to awaken his senses after having a good wash. Proper grooming is just like rejuvenating his confidence to have the energy to face the activities that awaits him. • A well-groomed pet is much easier to love. Of course, a responsible pet owner doesn’t want his dog to be dirty. A clean and healthy dog is very nice to look at. Others will also appreciate all the proper care that you do to your pet.  Contact Olivia today to set up a house-call!