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  • Writer's pictureStefani Cotten

The Importance of Grooming your Dog

Even if your dog’s hair isn’t particularly out of control, grooming provides many health benefits for your dog which may not be immediately obvious. Brushing ventilates your dog’s coat, helping it grow healthy and strong and takes away old and damaged hair. Grooming also ensures that your dog’s skin can breathe and keeps down the level of oil in their coat. Too much oil can block pores, cause irritation and all sorts of skin problems. Brushing also acts as a massage which promotes good blood circulation. As a dog sheds, the loose hair can get tangled, causing matting, which if not untangled regularly can eventually tear their skin and create painful sores. The sores can then get infected, and all of this is hidden underneath their fur, so if you aren’t checking on a regular basis, it may be missed. Dogs can’t tell us something hurts, so grooming can provide an opportunity to give them a health check where they can be checked for matting, sores, fleas, ticks or general lumps, bumps, and scratches, as well as the condition of their eyes, ears and feet. Visiting a Professional Groomer Although many dog owners prefer to groom their dogs at home, having your dog professionally groomed can save you time and energy. Dogs who are old or anxious or become aggressive when you try to groom them must be handled gently and confidently, and some may need to be muzzled while being groomed – this is something a professional groomer can do. Additionally, if you have a physical condition such as back issues or arthritis, professional grooming will keep you from having to deal with painful lifting and handling of your dog while being groomed. Professional groomers also have all of the tools to get your dog looking his best, from different kinds of brushes, clippers and scissors, to a grooming tub, and even an adjustable grooming table. They’re also equipped with shampoos and conditioners for all coat types, as well as for dogs with skin allergies or irritations, or those with fleas and ticks. While short haired breeds are less likely to require a full-on groom as those with longer hair, getting your short haired dog bathed by a professional groomer is a great opportunity to get your dog checked over. The groomer has the right tools and products to enhance your dog’s coat and can offer advice on what products are best for your dog’s coat. Not only that, it provides a social interaction for

your dog which gets them accustomed to a different environment and being handled by someone else, which is helpful in all sorts of situations. Dog breeds with longer coats require a more thorough groom and there are often specific coat styles for particular breeds. A professional groomer will know which coat style suits which hair type best and will know which products will enhance the dog’s coat the most. How often you should have your dog groomed will depend on your dog’s breed, lifestyle and their coat length, ask the groomer for advice on how regularly they should be groomed. In addition to keeping your dog looking and smelling great, professional grooming offers many health benefits:

  • Regular (but not weekly) baths wash away dirt and help prevent skin irritations.

  • Detangling prevents mats from forming and creating painful sores.

  • Different coats require different brushes, which groomers have. The more dead hair they remove from your dog, the less you’ll find on your living room rug.

  • Brushing distributes the dog’s natural oils and gets rid of dead skin.

  • Handling during grooming allows early detection of lumps, bumps, and skin irritations.

  • Nail trimming reduces the risk of nail tears and cracks and painful feet and posture.

  • Groomers can also brush your dog’s teeth with a dog-specific toothpaste (although regular teeth cleaning should also be done every day at home).

No matter whether you visit a professional with your dog every six weeks or a few times a year, a good bath, nail trim, brushing, de-matting, ear cleaning, and freshening up of private parts will make your canine kid more healthy, comfortable, and pleasant to live with.

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