Experience teaches that the more you know, the more you know that you do not know. If you have been grooming your dog for long, then you most likely are very good at it but you also know that there is always more that you need to know. In all grooming procedures, there are things you should do and things that you need to avoid. Many times we learn this the hard way when we realize we just did something that has counter-benefits, such as when cut the quick when trimming nails. We will look at the four basic grooming activities and highlight some of the things to do and those to avoid under each.
Let us begin with bathing. You should certainly bath your dog and you should do it regularly. Most veterinary officers will tell you that you should bath the dog at least once each month. Scrub it gently with shampoo and a brush and make sure to rinse thoroughly afterwards. These actions will help keep the skin fresh and free from infection. On the flip side, do not bath your dog as frequently as you bath yourself. Daily baths are definably good for you but certainly not for your dog as they will lead to loss of essential oils on the dog’s skin resulting in irritation and scratching. You skin on the other hand is able to quickly replace the oils lost during bathing.
Brush your dog’s hair on a regular basis. Use brushes that will not cause abrasions and do it gently. Move the brush along the hair fibers and not against them. When you brush properly, the dog will have a very appealing look. It will even look shinny and sleek, making it fun to walk in the park with. If the dog has long hair or fur, you may want to trim it. Hair clippers should be on hand for this and run the clipper gently through the hair. Please, do not do these procedures hurriedly because apart from doing a shoddy job, you can actually cause injury. Avoid clipping too close to the dog’s skin. Remember, you are reducing the hair, not “undressing your dog”. It is not safe to do this because that hair has a protective function.
You should develop a regular routine of checking your dog’s nails. The best time to do this is when you are bathing the dog since then you will be killing two birds with one stone. In fact it is advisable that during bathing, you also do physical examination for swellings, lumps, cuts, and so on. If the nails are long and possibly curving, trim them. What you should avoid it cutting too deep to reach the quick. This is why like mentioned above, you must never groom in a hurry. Trim small layers at a time while looking out for the quick. As soon as you sense that you are approaching it, stop trimming. A cut on the quick apart from being very painful can lead to serious infection.