Yorkshire terrier grooming at the salon for dogs

Dog grooming isn’t as easy as dog owners may think. Besides the proper steps of care, it is vital to be prepared to groom your own pet. How does one prepare to groom their dogs? One of the most important things to do is find out the proper tools needed to take care of your pooch. Grooming tools come in a wide variety, each specialized for different breeds as well as different functions. It is time to take note of the myriad tools used to make sure your dog is kept healthy and clean.

1. Brushing

Brushing your dog’s coat is an important part of grooming. The benefits of brushing is not only keeping your pet clean, but to prevent tangling or matting of the hair. You can easily remove loose hairs, dust, dirt, and other unwanted things that can be found. Never yank or cut out tangles and matted hair. There are special brushes that will do the trick. Bristle brushes are great for all coats, wire-pin brushes are for dogs with medium or long hair, and slick brushes are perfect to remove tangled or matted coats. You determine which brush to use based on the type of hair coat. Combs may be purchased, but never in place of brushes. Research various brands of dog brushes and feel free to get advice from a trusted veterinarian, dog groomer, or dog owner.

2. Dental Hygiene

Believe it or not, you need to make sure your dog’s gums and chompers are in good shape. It is important to remove bad breath, plaque, or any pieces of food stuck between teeth. Again, look into toothbrushes and toothpaste made especially for canines. Finger brushes, pads, and sponges are available, too. First, you must introduce the toothpaste to your dog; it has to familiarize itself in order to cooperate. Dogs usually like the taste because dog toothpaste has flavors that taste like foods dogs enjoy. Never rush the teeth-brushing process; you want to perform slowly (while praising your canine) and reward with a treat afterwards.

3. Wash and Rinse

Although all parts of the grooming process are essential, it is very important to focus on the “bread and butter,” which is washing your dog. In films, you may have seen kids bathe their dog in a kid-size pool, or scrub their pup in the bathroom. Either of those options are perfectly fine as long as the dog is being supervised. If using a bathtub, put a towel inside the tub for the dog to stand or sit on. This prevents your pet from slipping; be sure to not cover up the drain with the towel. There are tubs made for puppies and large dogs, too. Before washing Fido, you must brush the coat. The hair should be detangled and easy for soap and scrubbing to clean through.

Purchase dog shampoo from your local pet store. Never use shampoo meant for humans since the chemicals can irritate the dog’s eyes and skin. When working the shampoo, you want to take your time and massage the suds into their coat. You may use cotton balls to keep water out of your dog’s ears. Water should always be lukewarm. Some people believe you should wash your dog once every three to four months, but if unsure, contact your veterinarian to find the best schedule that will work for your pet.

Rinse at least twice to be sure that all of the soap residue is removed. Otherwise, this can cause skin irritation. Use towels to dry off your dog. If possible, buy a hair dryer made specifically for canines (do not use blow dryers made for humans) to speed up the drying process. Don’t forget to give your pooch a treat for good behavior!

4. Clipping Excess Hair

Clipping excess hair from your dog’s coat takes patience and the proper tool. This step can be easy to accomplish without issues as long as you research the best dog clippers.Look into ones that make the least noise so this does not scare or disturb your pet. After brushing and washing your dog, use the dog clippers (preferably with guide combs to clip onto the clippers) and slowly remove the hairs. Make sure the clippers do not get too hot because it can burn the dog’s skin. Always be sure the blades are well-lubricated and switch clippers or blades, if necessary.

5. Clipping Nails

Pet owners should not simply focus on bathing or brushing their pet; clipping toenails is essential in the dog grooming process. Keeping your dog’s nails well-trimmed helps your pet avoid nasty health problems and discomfort. This includes overgrown or torn nails. If the nail gets too long, it can easily puncture one of the pads beneath the paw. Examine the paws and look for any overgrown or torn nails, cracked pads, or swelling.

Invest in a nail clipper or grinder made for dogs. Some clippers work similarly to a small pair of scissors or a miniature butcher knife, while others work like a set of pliers. It depends on the size of your dog as well as you and your dog’s comfort. Give your dog treats during and after clipping their nails while praising them. Remember: if your dog bleeds a bit after clipping, use styptic powder. Most importantly, speak to your veterinarian to learn more.

You’re Set!

If you have researched and purchased your tools, then you are all set! Even if you are ready to begin, remember that it is normal to feel a bit nervous. Act slowly and if possible, have a friend or family member (especially if they are experienced in this department) help you along the way. As always, you can speak to your veterinarian or professional dog groomer for help.