Are you up for it? Tips for Home Grooming your pet

1- Stay calm and bring on the DoodleDoodle treats.

2- Use appropriate equipment. 

Choose the brush you use depending on your pet fur and skin type. Combs, slicker brushes and rakes have different purpose and will suits different types of fur. A basic bristle/ pin brush combo will suite most dogs for everyday brushing. But when it comes to dogs with heavier, thicker coats and those with an undercoat, you may want to grab a slicker brush or an undercoat rake. Especially if you are trying to remove matts or tangles. other tools your are tempted to use, for example should you wish to trim your pet’s nail, needs to be high quality and appropriate to animals.

3- Do it regularly

Grooming helps rid the coat of shed hair and dead skin while spreading natural oils. Clipping ensures the maintenance of a comfortable coat length to match the seasons and ensure your pet's comfort.

Grooming your pets is about making sure that they stay clean and healthy. It’s beneficial for everyone present in the house and you will eliminate mats, ticks, fleas, shedding, and stop other severe health conditions developing that you may have had no idea about. An important fact to consider is that grooming affects your pet’s mental health as a good looking, good smelling pet with a nice haircut will make your pet feel special and loved.

4- Only use shampoos and grooming products specifically made for animals.

Human shampoo has a different pH than dog and cat skin requires, but pet shampoos are designed to be a perfect match. If your pet has a greasy coat, is extremely itchy or has other skin conditions, your veterinarian can also recommend a therapeutic shampoo that can help.

5- Don't bathe your pet too often.

Regular brushing alone can accomplish a great deal in the way of good grooming. Ray Truting, a master groomer with the Connecticut Veterinary Center in West Hartford, believes that “brushing is the key to keeping a pet clean. He doesn’t recommend a lot of bathing and suggests that “if you are going to bathe your pet, brush first to get the heavy dirt out.” Putting your pet in a bath before brushing just makes for dirty bath water and an even dirtier pet”.

6- Trim.

Now that your pet is washed and brushed, maybe you want to try giving it a trim. If so, be very careful with the scissors. Unlike people, who get haircuts with wet hair, always start with a dry, clean hair and only use the tips of sharp shears to trim your pet’s feet, face and tail, which will prevent you from cutting your pet if it moves suddenly. When trimming the ears, “always have your other hand on the edges of the ears so you know where you are only cutting the hair. If your dog’s fur is matted, never try to cut it with scissors and use clippers instead.Linda Easton, head of International Professional Groomers, Inc. patient recommends using a No. 10 clipping blade.

7- Teach your pet to enjoy grooming sessions. 

For example many dogs, especially puppies, need encouragement and positive reinforcement when you first introduce them to a grooming routine.

These tips will help the first few at-home grooming sessions go smoothly:

  • Take things slowly and give lots of DoodleDoodle Seafood treats and praise so your pup will look forward to its next pampering session.
  • Before bath time, lay a slip-proof mat in the tub to prevent your pet from sliding around.

8- Make sure you clean your pets ears.

Cleaning your pet’s ears does not require any special equipment. A good quality ear cleaning solution, some cotton balls or gauze, and some treats to reward your pet are all that is needed.

DO NOT use cotton tip applicators (Q-tips/ear buds) due to the risk of perforating the ear drum or causing trauma to the ear canal. In addition, the use of cotton tip applicators can push debris further into the ear canal.

Step-by-Step Guide for Ear Cleaning

  1. Sitting on the floor, have your pet sit in front of you with his rear end positioned between your legs.
  2. Grasp one ear and hold the ear flap (pinna) up vertically to expose the ear canal and help straighten out the ear canal.
  3. While holding your pet’s ear flap, gently but firmly with one hand, hold the ear cleaning solution in your other hand.
  4. Squeeze some ear cleaning solution into your pet’s ear. Use enough cleaner to completely fill the ear canal. It is fine if some of the cleaner spills out of the ear canal. DO NOT put the tip of the bottle into the ear. If the tip of the bottle touches your pet’s ear, wipe the tip off with a clean cotton ball soaked in alcohol to prevent the spread of bacteria or yeast.
  5. Continue to hold the ear flap up vertically with one hand and gently massage the base of the ear below the ear opening for about 30 seconds with the other hand. This allows the cleaning solution to break up the debris that is in the ear canal. You should hear a 'squishing' sound as the cleaning solution moves around in the horizontal part of the ear canal.
  6. While still holding the ear flap up, wipe away debris from the inner part of the ear flap and the upper ear canal using a cotton ball or gauze.
  7. Allow your pet to shake his head. This allows the remaining ear cleaning solution and debris from the ear canal to move out of the canal to the outer opening of the ear.
  8. Once again, hold the ear flap up, and remove the loosened debris and cleaning solution from the outer opening of the ear canal using a cotton ball or gauze.
  9. Provide DoodleDoodle treats to your dog.
  10. Repeat the same process with the other ear.
  11. If your dog appears to be in pain during the cleaning process, stop and consult your veterinarian.

If this sounds a little too much for you to handle there are many wonderfully equipped and caring grooming centres in and around. You could consider adopting a good brushing regimes and leave the regular cleaning to a groomer of your choice.