Grooming your dog is essential to its health. You should be sure that you are not neglecting things like matted hair or dirt and grime that is against your dog’s skin that can cause infections or skin issues over the long term. Many people are not sure about how to groom their dog at home, and this can lead to trouble with your dog’s health which is linked to a lack of grooming care at home.
Sometimes dog owners are not sure about how to groom a dog that is not interested in being groomed, and this can create an entirely different set of issues for you and your pet when it comes to grooming. If your dog is unwilling to be groomed, you can usually teach them to feel more positive about the experience with some dog training knowledge on your side.
1. Be Patient
Remember that your dog probably does not understand why you want to groom them in the first place. They might feel resentful about having their hair pulled on as you brush them, or they could be in pain due to mats and other issues with their coat. You will always need to remember to be patient when grooming your dog at home so that they learn to like the process of being groomed. When you are patient, your dog will learn to feel positive about the grooming process, and you will not have to struggle with behavioral issues related to their grooming needs.
2. Regular Brushing is the Best
If you have a dog that does not have a smooth coat, you will need to remember to brush your dog daily to be sure that they do not get mats and other issues that can lead to injury to the skin, infections, and hot spots. Dogs that get brushed a few times a week are much less likely to experience issues with their coat and skin health, and brushing is also good for stimulating circulation in your dog’s skin.
3. Bathe Carefully
While it is not a bad thing to wash your dog when they are muddy, you need to be sure that you are not getting soap in their ears or their eyes and that you do not leave moisture inside the ears for too long. When dogs get soap in their ears or eyes, this can be very irritating to these tissues, and your dog might scratch or rub at the itch, causing skin irritation and damage.
You can also cause ear infections by allowing moisture to get into your dog’s ears and stay there after their bath. Dogs with long and floppy ears can be more prone to ear infections anyway, so you need to be careful that you do not expose your dog to the risk of an ear infection after a bath by drying out their ears carefully with a towel.
4. Bathe with Gentle Soaps and Shampoos
You should be sure that you wash your dog with gentle shampoos that will not cause skin irritation or rashes and hot spots. You can use human products so long as they are made for children or for babies or if they are fragrance-free. Many human fragrance additives can cause allergic reactions and skin issues that you will want your dog to avoid.
There are also many dog-specific shampoo products on the market that you can select from so that you are sure that you are getting a shampoo that will not irritate your dog’s skin and cause them to be uncomfortable. Using pet-safe products can make a big impact on your dog’s skin health as these products are often pH-balanced just for dogs.
5. Trim Nails Regularly
Part of your at-home grooming process should be trimming your dog’s nails carefully with a proper trimming tool. Many dogs are scared of this process, and you need to move slowly and be patient as you engage in taking care of your pet’s nails. If your dog does not allow you to trim their nails regularly due to fear, you can take them to the veterinarian or a dog groomer to have this process completed.
Dogs with nails that have grown too long can have issues with foot pain and nails that curl back into the feet. Make sure that you are taking care of your dog’s toenails as well as their coat and skin when you groom them at home. Most pets will learn that this process does not hurt and be able to be relaxed about their nails being trimmed with time. Make sure that you are patient when you are teaching your dog about this process to prevent issues down the road.
Caring For Your Dog’s Grooming Needs Start at Home
Dog owners need to be aware of the grooming processes that are essential to their dog’s well-being. Taking the time to groom your dog is important for their overall health and well-being. If you feel that you cannot groom your dog without help, you can take them to a dog groomer and have an expert take care of this need for you. Some breeds of dogs, such as Poodles, will likely need to visit a professional groomer for all their grooming needs.
Taking care of your dog means bathing them on a regular basis, brushing them at least twice a week, and taking care of their nails. Make sure to dry out your dog’s ears after every bath and be on the lookout for things like skin irritation and allergic reactions after using new grooming sprays or shampoos. Your dog will thank you for taking the time to groom them on a regular basis, and they will be much happier and healthier due to these efforts on your behalf.