DOG GROOMING: The health benefits grooming provides:

DOG GROOMING: The health benefits grooming provides:

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Pet Health and Hygiene:

There’s nothing more wonderful than seeing a happy, healthy and sweet-smelling dog. But imagine how stressed and uncomfortable your dog would be if you didn’t regularly groom him? He could be suffering from a parasite outbreak or from a painful skin condition.

Allocate a few minutes each day to take care of your dog’s grooming requirementsGrooming is not just about maintaining your dog’s hygiene and good looks— it’s more about caring for his physical health and general well-being.

In particular, focus on his coat as regular brushing is beneficial for all dogs (especially for our long-haired buddies), no matter the breed or size. 

This routine will —

  • allow you to treat and manage any parasite outbreak
  • keep his fur, skin, and teeth in tip-top condition
  • bring out the natural oils in his fur and help remove dead hair and dirt
  • prevent the fur from matting
  • allow you to check and maintain your dog’s nails
  • allow you to seek immediate medical treatment for any abnormalities of the skin  
  • allow you to maintain a clean living environment for your family and dog including his bedding                                                                                                                                                                        

So when is the right time to start grooming your dog? 

Begin at the beginning while he’s still a puppy. If you have an adult dog that’s not accustomed to the process, professional dog groomers are trained to handle difficult or anxious pets. But do it routinely.

Keep coats and skin healthy:

Start with his coat. Your dog’s age and his outdoor hobbies will determine how often you need to brush.

There are many dog brushes to choose from. However, a metal-toothed comb is ideal for removing matted fur and this process should be done weekly, especially during the winter months in the Southern Highlands when his coat is at its thickest.

If his fur becomes impossibly tangled, don’t try to pull or cut it out as he will avoid any form of grooming. Period. Instead, engage a professional dog groomer to trim your dog’s fur so there’s less risk of cutting the skin if your dog suddenly moves.

It is also important that you maintain the natural oils in your dog’s fur especially with long-haired and curly-haired dogs (Samoyeds, Bearded Collies, Cocker Spaniels, Shih Tzus, Poodles and Maltese Terriers), which require more intense grooming than short-haired dogs

During the summer season, regularly check for external parasites such as ticks, fleas, Sarcoptic mange and ear mites. Such infestations can cause your dog great discomfort and in some instances, life-threatening situations. Immediately seek medical treatment if your dog shows any signs of weakness or illness.

Shampoo and skin conditions:

One of the best ways to manage any skin abnormalities and parasite outbreaks is to regularly wash your dog and coif him daily with a brush.

Create a schedule for bathing that’s suited to your dog’s breed and skin condition. Always use vet-recommended dog shampoos. This will help maintain the natural oils that keep his skin and fur healthy and free from unpleasant odours.

Use vet-recommended flea drops to kill the multiple stages of infestation. Other treatments may include topical steroids, antibiotic creams, medicated shampoos, and antihistamines, which your preferred vet will prescribe.

And as we say to kids, don’t forget to check the ears!

Regular Clipping of Nails:

Though many dogs naturally wear their nails down when they’re playing and walking, their nails still need to be clipped weekly — especially if you hear the sound of their nails clicking on any surface.

It’s important to remember that your dog’s claws should never protrude over the pad and touch the ground when standing.

Clipping their nails is never an easy process (most dogs loathe it). But if you start early, the procedure will be accepted as part of their grooming routine.

Start by gently clipping the tip of the nail. If your dog begins to wriggle and pull away, don’t risk cutting the nails as any swift action may cause bleeding and pain.

Book an appointment with a preferred dog groomer or your vet. Your dog will be happier, and all risks will be minimised if this procedure is done in a calm environment.

Cleaning Teeth:

We should ensure that our dog’s gums and teeth remain healthy throughout his life.

Regular tooth brushing will help prevent periodontal disease so it’s always best to start brushing your pet’s teeth at a young age. This will get him accustomed to the process. Your vet will advise you when it’s best to introduce your dog to his new toothbrush and what toothpaste to use.

Some dogs will require more dental cleaning than others, depending on their breed, genetics and any prepositional periodontal disease. Dental chews such as Greenies, Vet Solutions, Dentalex, Oral Chews and Bonies will also help maintain the health of your dog’s pearly whites.

If your dog suffers from bad breath it may be a sign that his teeth require urgent medical attention.

Benefits of Professional Dog Grooming:

Professional dog groomers are essential to your dog’s health and appearance.

A groomer will thoroughly inspect your dog’s fur and paws for cuts, punctures, and parasites, and apply a topical ointment to prevent any infection. Additionally, they will use shampoo products suited to a particular skin condition.

Groomers are also familiar with a dog’s anatomy and will notice abnormalities such as lumps, skin discolouration, rashes, skin lesions, bald patches or bleeding.

Doggie Barber:

Today, I’m visiting Rose, owner of the Southern Highlands’ popular Doggie Barber. With her are her beautifully groomed dogs, Toby and Alvin.

While many people conjure up the notion that dog salons are all about coifed coats, and pink or blue bows for visual effect, Rose regularly attends to a variety of dogs who require grooming with proficiency and speed because of their temperament, size, lifestyle and skin condition. And it takes great skill to make the procedure look effortless.

Phone Rose for an appointment on 02 48694402.  Also join in the conversation on Google+, Twitter,  Instagram, YouTube and Facebook. 

Our next blog will feature dog walking tips for when you’re out and about in the community.

Also join in the conversation on Google+, YouTube, Twitter,  Instagram, and Facebook.