Grooming your dog is just as important as your personal grooming. Dogs are great companions and are good friends. Your dog is part of your life, and you will want him to look good and feel his best.
Start by keeping him brushed. Different dogs have different hair types. The different types of dog hair are long coats, medium coats, short coats, curly coats and wavy coats. There are brushes that are designed for your dogs hair type. You may need to try a couple of different brushes until you see what brush works best for his type of coat and one that he likes you to use because it feels good. Dont be in a hurry when brushing your dog. Dont brush him too fast or so hard that you hurt his delicate skin by pulling on his matted hair.
Brushing your dog has many benefits. First: It is a bonding time between you and your dog. You can brush gently and talk to him quietly as you brush his hair to a beautiful glossy and smooth coat, free of mats and tangles. Second: Brushing helps to distribute his natural oils in his coat so that it will look healthy and shiny. Third: If you can consistently brush his coat a couple of times a week, depending on the need, you can reduce the tangles and mats that will develop. This is especially important if your dog has long hair. Fourth: It allows you to inspect his skin, looking for any type of irritation, skin disease, or fleas.
In addition to having a good brush and comb for your dog, the type of shampoo is also important. Do not use human shampoo on your dog. You should use a good non-detergent shampoo. Human shampoos are designed to remove oils, and this is not the goal when bathing your dog. A good shampoo that has a proper Ph balance will help eliminate any itching issues your dog may have. Using a dog shampoo dog allows his naturals oil to give him that healthy, shiny, silky looking coat.
Short hair dogs need less grooming, and may only need weekly brushing. A stainless steel comb or natural bristle brush will keep his hair shiny and healthy looking.
The longer the hair on your dog, the more attention it will need. The more often you brush him allows you to reduce the mats and tangles, and also reduces his shedding.
Curly haired dogs shed less, they have less dander, but his hair may have a tendency to get more tangles and knots. Brushing with a good dog grooming brush often can reduce these tangles.
Since long hair dogs require more care than short hair dogs, bathing more often will also be necessary. When you decide it is time for your dog to be bathed, you should first brush your dogs coat. Bathing will automatically cause some matting or tangles and getting rid of as many mats as possible before bathing will help beautify his coat. There are also products that will allow the mat or tangle to release easier. When using this conditioner, apply it to the tangle and work it in for a couple of minutes, then comb it gently, being careful not to pull so hard you hurt your dog.
To shampoo your dog, use these steps:
- If you are bathing him in your bathtub, put a towel or rubber mat down first to eliminate him from slipping.
- Use warm water. Use care in washing his face. Use a wash cloth, wash mat, or soft sponge around his eyes, nose and ears.
- Get his hairs completely wet and apply the shampoo, lathering generously. Be sure to clean his tummy, tail, his feet and in between his toes, the skin folds, his rump and under his tail. Keep the shampoo away from his eyes, nose, and ears, but gently and carefully wash his face.
- Rinse him thoroughly. This can be a time consuming process especially on long hair dogs. Any remaining shampoo could cause a skin irritation.
- Towel dry your dog thoroughly, and allow his hair to air dry completely or use a hair dryer, if he allows you to do that. Brush again.
- Reward your dog for his patience. A treat or a loving squeeze just may be the praise he deserves and wants.
- Reward yourself. You have done a wonderful service for your dog.
If you have difficulty with the shampooing process or you dont have the time, space, patience, or desire, or the mats are just too difficult to remove, seek the services of a professional dog groomer. They will also trim your dogs nails.
Your efforts will be rewarded by having a good looking dog. He will enjoy being clean, and you will enjoy a good smelling, faithful companion your dog.
About the Author:
Lori Kniff loves cats and dogs. She has had a cat most of her life and several dogs. She is concerned with the health and welfare of our pets.
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