5 Things New Dog Owners Should Know About Grooming Their Dogs
If you have recently acquired a dog and are unsure about what to expect when it comes to grooming, then this article is for you! In this post, we show you how to avoid some of the most common mistakes new dog owners make when it comes to grooming their pets.
As a dog owner, you probably spend a lot of time thinking about your pet’s health and well-being. Grooming is an important part of pet care, but it’s not always easy to get it right, especially if you’re a new owner. While it’s important to consider the type of breed you have, many of these tips are sure to help you and your furry friend. Here are five grooming mistakes that many new dog owners make:
1. Not Brushing The Coat Properly
Many people think they can get away with not brushing their dog in between grooming appointments, but this can lead to matting and pelting of the coat. For daily brushing, you can use a soft pinned brush, but for detailing and de-matting you will need a slicker brush. The biggest mistake people make is not combing with a wide toothed metal comb after brushing, as many mats can be left behind in the dog’s coat. Running a comb through their fur and being able to see their skin is key to ensuring your dog doesn’t get shaved down at the groomers.
When a pelted or severely matted dog is brought to the groomers, often there is no choice but the shave them down. It would take hours to brush out weeks’ worth of matting, and it would hurt your dog, potentially causing brush burns. Aside from this, a pelted coat can hide many underlying health conditions like lesions, warts, cysts, and even parasites like fleas or ticks.
2. Improper Bathing Techniques
Improper bathing techniques can cause a dog’s fur to become matted. It will become very difficult to brush out your dog once matted this way. Dogs with matted fur should never be washed without first brushing the fur to remove the mats.
It is also important to towel dry the dog gently by patting or squeezing dry after bathing and not vigorously rubbing the coat so as not to cause friction between the hairs. Always completely dry the fur with a cool setting on a hair dryer. Never air-dry a dog with long fur, as this is a recipe for matting disaster. By following these simple tips, you can help your dog stay clean between their grooming appointments.
3. Clipping The Nails Too Short
Cutting your dog’s nails is an important part of dog care, because letting their nails grow too long can make walking or running very uncomfortable. Running with long nails can also cause their nails to break and exposing the vein inside. However, it’s important to do it safely.
Cutting the nail too short can lead to bleeding, which can be painful and traumatic for your dog. You should also avoid quicking the nail, which is the blood vessel in the center of the nail. If you cut the nail too short, you can use styptic powder to help stop the bleeding. Quicking the nail can be painful and traumatic for your dog and may make them unwilling to cooperate with future nail trimmings. With a little patience and care, you can safely trim your dog’s nails and keep them healthy.
However, if you feel unconfident in trimming your dog’s nail or they are too squirmy, bring them to a professional to have them trimmed.
4. Leaving The Dog Unrestrained
When grooming your dog, it is important to make sure that they are properly restrained. This applies to activities such as brushing, bathing, and trimming nails. If your dog is up on a table, countertop, or in a bathtub, never leave them unattended. They could easily slip or fall, which could cause serious injuries that require emergency veterinary care. By taking a few simple precautions, you can help ensure that your dog stays safe during grooming sessions.
If possible, always have two people during the grooming process. One person can hold the dog and distract them with petting or treats while the other brushes and trims. If you need to get something from the other room, let your dog off the table or countertops. It only takes one second for a dog to fall or jump off something and break a leg or toe.
5. Remove Debris From Their Skin and Coat
One of the most important things you need to do as a dog owner is to keep your pet clean and healthy. This means removing any debris that may have accumulated on their fur, as well as cleaning their eyes and bum regularly. Failing to do so can lead to serious health problems for your dog like skin or bacterial infections, so it’s important to be vigilant about their hygiene.
If your dog often gets a lot of tear secretions or build-up, consider asking the groomer to take the hair shorter above and around the eyes. Hair getting into their eyes can be a constant source of irritation and frustration for your dog, so keep it short or keep it out of their eyes by tying it up. The same goes for their bum and sanitary area. Take it particularly shorter in these areas for puppies and geriatric dogs that don’t have great control over their bathroom habits. By taking some simple steps to keep your dog clean, you can help ensure that they live a long and happy life.
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