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Work & Love in one :
Grooming your Dog How You can help your precious pet to have a stress free grooming session
All dogs will benefit from regular grooming, whether it is a short haired breed or one with a long or fluffy coat.
Reasons for grooming :
Cleanliness – keeping your dog’s coat clean by removing dirt and dead hair helps encourage new hair growth and reduces the amount of hair deposited on household furniture
Health – grooming helps to stimulate new coat growth and prevents the formation of knots which may lead to skin irritation
Appearance – most owners take a pride in their dogs looking smart, and regular grooming will certainly help your dog to look his best
Inspection – regular grooming is also a great way to check for parasites or any suspicious lumps and bumps
Relationship – grooming is part of dog’s socialisation activities. Regular grooming helps create a bond between you and your dog, and accustoms the dog to being handled later by a qualified dog groomer.
Start the grooming experience at an early age as part of your puppy’s socialisation programme and routines. Keep the sessions short to start off with – just a couple of minutes, gradually increasing the time spent on the table. Always make the experience positive, rewarding with praise and treats. Any struggling should be dealt with firmly but kindly as your puppy may be frustrated, mischievous or even afraid. Build up the experience and your puppy will come to accept his grooming routine and also being handled on the table, which will help for other activities such as veterinary visits or grooming sessions. Finish the grooming routine before he gets bored or tired, so that each session ends on a positive note.
Knots and matts A knot occurs where the coat is slightly tangled but it can be removed by careful brushing or combing out. Matts are formed when dead, loose undercoat hair becomes trapped by the top or guard hair, and starts to clump and twist together. If this matted coat becomes wet, the matting tightens and becomes almost solid. Do not attempt to remove matts unless trained in the procedure. Otherwise, refer to a professional groomer.
Tips and essentials tools to prevent knots
Firstly and most importantly they need to be brushed at home by You as well in between grooms. I am not saying this to make MY life easier but to make the grooming session painfree for you beloved dogs so they can take the visits to the groomer as part of life not a punishment.
Tools You’ll need at home for longer haired breeds:
A long pin slicker brush which should be your best friend owing a long haired dog – designed to work on through tangles and remove dead hair. (choose a less strong one to avoid scratching your dog’s skin - for pupies under 6 months the ball pin slicker is enough. Avoid using them around the face and ears) A wide toothed comb A narrow toothed comb conditioning spray (or mix some pet conditioner with water). Correct brushing technique: Before you start lihgtly mist the coat with some conditioning spray,as brushing dry coat can cause breakage. With the slicker brush, brush the coat from surface to end, folding it layer by layer. This thorough brushing should remove dead hair which forms tangles if left unattended. Once you worked your way through the whole coat with the slicker, grab the wide toothed comb and carefully slide it through the coat if it slides with ease , job done! If You bump into knots and tangles, try to loosen them with your fingers – and the narrow toothed comb, then try the slicker again. Please don’t cut them out as you might cut in the dog’s skin as well. Always brush them thoroughly before bath beacuse shampoo and conditioner stay int he tangles and rapidly form mats. Always use pet conditioner, coats not sealed properly with a conditioning product are prone to matting. Leaving the cuticle open after bathing creates a rough texture Also don’t leave dog fleeces/coats on them for more time than necessary as that doesn’t helps staying knot free either. Areas that are prone to knotting are behind the ears, sanitary areas, under dog’s collar, cheeks, under the forelegs, flank and tail - don’t forget to check these areas as well.
There is no magic trick to remove mats – using detangling products and a correct de-matting tool in most cases help to save the dog’s coat – but unfortunately there are situations when the coat is pelted and should be clipped as short as necessary.
Tips for owners to help the groomer : Some animals can get very upset at this totally foreign feeling. That's why it's a good idea to get your dog used to having her feet touched before you or the groomer attempts a nail trim. Rub your hand up and down her leg and then gently press each individual toe—and be sure to give her lots of praise and some food treats as you do this. Every animal is different, but chances are that within a week or two of daily foot massage, your dog will be better able to tolerate a trim.
What else to look for?
A parasite is something that lives on another animal (the host) and gets its nourishment from the host. If left unchecked, the parasite causes disease or even death. The most common external parasites found on dogs are fleas and ticks.
• Fleas are very small, brownish black, extremely agile creatures. Excessive scratching and self-biting can be symptoms of flea infestation. Even if no fleas are to be seen the presence of shiny black specks like coal dust (flea excreta) is a sure indication of the presence of fleas (dab the specks with a damp piece of cotton wool and if it goes pink it confirms the presence of fleas; these are the remains of a digested blood meal from the host). Please note : I DO NOT take up dogs with FLEAS.
• Ticks are largish grey pea shaped parasites that can be 3 to 4mm in length. They attach themselves to other animals in order to have a blood meal. There is evidence that ticks are also a threat to human health as they can spread Lyme disease. There is now a wide range of proprietary powders, sprays, ‘spot-on’ treatments and anti-flea and tick collars available, removing them is part of the groom
Common skin problems
Please delay grooming till your dogs are healed !
Ringworm Ringworm is a fungal disease, affecting the skin, nails and hair. Circular lesions appear causing hair loss, which become scaly and crusty. Ringworm is contagious and is a zoonotic condition (transmissible to humans).
Allergic dermatitis Dermatitis causes irritation, hair loss and inflammation and is a result of sensitivity to the environment.
Alopecia Alopecia can range from a thinning of hair to total hair loss and can be caused by a number of factors such as skin parasites, hormonal imbalance, infections, stress or poor nutrition. Seek veterinary advice for any skin problems.
Some more tips on shedding :
How to reduce shedding Despite the prevailing belief, there is no way to completely stop your dog from shedding. Virtually all dogs shed to one degree or another, regardless of breed, size, coat length or hair type. The best you can hope to do is control or reduce dog shedding when it inevitably happens by practicing proper grooming techniques.
Dogs need to get rid – or shed – dead hair. Most grow a heavier coat in the winter to help insulate from the elements and then shed extra fur in the summer to stay cool. Shedding can also result from skin irritation or infections, parasites or a poor diet.
There’s no way to avoid it. You can only hope to contain it. There are several ways that you can reduce dog shedding or prevent it from becoming problematic, which could lead to allergies, breathing problems and damaged clothing or furniture. Consider trying these simple steps:
DON’T BRUSH OFF REGULAR BRUSHING
Regular combing and brushing is essential, particularly around seasonal changes, when shedding most often occurs. It’s advisable to use an appropriate brush (bristle, pin or slicker), followed by a finishing comb. Many breeds can benefit from daily brushing, which should make the coat softer, cleaner and less prone to major shedding. It will also root out fleas and other parasites, which often cause skin irritation and, subsequently, excessive shedding. There are so many different kinds of dog grooming tools for different coat types - again – I am happy to help You choose the right tools so to make the grooming sessions flawless
Just one more word on accompanying your pet during a grooming session. I advise You not to. The reason is simple : the dog is calmer if the owner is not present - there's no mummy to "rescue him" , no one to moan to :), no need to fuss so we can get over the makeover quicker and easier- dogs just tend to get on with it better without their owners presence. Trust me I am not going to do anything anyhow else beacuse you're not there - I treat all dogs as if they were mine.