By Cindy Orris
It’s important to start early grooming your dog and to make it a daily habit as part of a lifetime commitment to quality dog care. Some of the basic areas of dog grooming are as follows:
- Use an ear cleaner for dogs to loosen dirt, then wipe with a cotton balls or baby wipes.
- Make this a weekly event for most dogs, or a daily event for floppy-ear dogs, or dogs that do a lot of swimming.
- Some breeds that have a lot of ear hair may need to have it removed to provide good airflow and reduce chances of infection and ear mites.
- If you see redness, excessive buildup or smell an odor, see your veterinarian immediately.
- Use a toothbrush, finger brush and toothpaste made for dogs and remember dog’s gums are more sensitive then ours, and human toothpaste can make a dog sick.
- For dogs that will not permit brushing, try giving them bones to chew on, but also check for tartar build up and swollen gums and, if needed, schedule a dental cleaning with your veterinarian.
- Make this a weekly event and just clip the tip of the nail. Try not to go any longer than a month in-between nail trimmings.
- If you are unable to trim the dog’s nails, seek professional help from a groomer or your veterinarian. Don’t allow the nails to grow too long or the dog may develop problems walking and standing.
- Some dog breeds need more brushing than others; some will need regular grooming from a professional groomer.
- Get into a routine of brushing your dog weekly. It’s a great way to develop a bond with your dog and also become aware of any problems that may develop such as sores, lumps, fleas, ticks, coat matting etc.
- Use a PH balance shampoo (preferably tearless) made for dogs.
- It is an individual preference how often to bath a dog.
- Use care around ears, eyes and nose.
- Check anal glands. If you notice they are impacted, have the dog checked by your veterinarian.