Some pet owners think they can groom their dogs the same way they do themselves and use the same human products. After all, they’re man’s best friend, right? Wrong. Dogs have entirely different physical properties from us and require a specialized approach to their care. You eat dog treats for dessert, would you?
Here, we’ll explore four common mistakes dog owners frequently make in grooming their pets to ensure you get it right the next time.
- Ignoring Dental Care
Some people assume that dogs find brushing their teeth uncomfortable or stressful, so they become resistant to the process. While it’s true that not all dogs readily accept dental care, they still need it to maintain good overall health. It’s not just about fresh breath and pearly white teeth, but also preventing tooth decay and gum disease. In severe cases, decayed teeth may need extraction while gum disease causes infections that can spread throughout the dog’s body, affecting vital organs like the heart and kidneys.
Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and specially formulated dog toothpaste to gently brush your pet’s teeth in a circular motion, focusing on the gum line where plaque accumulates most. If your dog isn’t too keen on getting their teeth brushed, try dental treats. They’re specially designed to help clean your dog’s teeth as they chew. Don’t forget to schedule regular dental check-ups with your veterinarian. They can assess your dog’s dental health, perform professional cleanings if necessary, and address any concerns or issues early on.
- Neglecting Regular Brushing
Different dog breeds have different types of coats. Some have long, silky hair, while others may have short, dense fur or even wiry, curly locks. Regular brushing removes loose hairs, tangles, and debris that accumulates in their coats. It also prevents matting, (deep knots and tangles) which causes skin irritation, restricted movement, and even skin infections in long-haired breeds.
Be sure to choose the right brush for your dog’s coat type. The type of brush makes a big difference in the results. For instance, a slicker brush with fine, short wires is excellent for removing loose hair and tangles in long-haired breeds. On the other hand, a bristle brush with natural fibers is more suitable for breeds with shorter hair. It helps distribute natural oils and keeps the coat shiny.
When brushing your dog’s hair, follow the natural direction of hair growth and use gentle strokes to prevent discomfort or skin irritation. Take your time and be patient, especially if your dog isn’t accustomed to brushing. And if you encounter a mat while brushing, don’t yank or pull on it forcefully. Instead, use your fingers or a detangling spray to gently work through it.
- Using Incorrect Products
Many pet owners use human grooming products like shampoos, conditioners, and soaps on their dogs, thinking they’ll work just okay. These products have fragrances, dyes, and chemicals that may be too harsh or irritating for a dog’s sensitive skin and coat. Dogs have a different pH level and sebaceous gland production compared to humans.
You should use dog-specific grooming products. These cleaning agents are gentle, pH-balanced, and free from harmful ingredients that can cause irritation. Dog shampoos and conditioners often contain natural ingredients that soothe the skin, promote a healthy coat, and provide a pleasant scent without overpowering fragrances.
When choosing dog grooming essentials, consider your pet’s specific needs. For example, if your dog has dry or sensitive skin, pick a hypoallergenic shampoo free from harsh chemicals and fragrances. If you’re unsure about which dog grooming products to choose, consult with your veterinarian or a professional groomer. They can give you recommendations based on your dog’s breed, coat type, and any specific skin concerns.
- Rushing Bath Time
When you don’t take the time to thoroughly lather and rinse your dog’s coat, residue can remain and cause skin irritations or potential allergic reactions. Improper rinsing can also leave shampoo or conditioner trapped in their fur, making them itch and uncomfortable.
To properly bathe your dog, start by preparing the bathing area. Ensure the water temperature is lukewarm, and gather all your cleaning supplies. Wet your dog’s coat thoroughly, and apply the right amount of dog shampoo to your hands and create a gentle lather. Work the shampoo into their coat, paying attention to dirtier areas, such as the belly, paws, and underarms. Be mindful of sensitive areas, like the face and genitals, and rinse their coat thoroughly, ensuring you remove all the shampoo. Remember, bath time isn’t just about getting your dog clean quickly, but also about bonding with them.
Paws-itively Perfect Grooming
Grooming is a journey of love, patience, and dedication. Your dog will appreciate the time and effort you invest in their grooming routine, and you’ll see the rewards in their health, happiness, and the unbreakable bond you share. If your dog isn’t fond of grooming, you may struggle to give them the proper care they deserve. Professional dog grooming from Happi Days Dog Care offers exceptional services that cater to your dog’s unique needs. Contact us today to give your dog the gift of top-notch care and attention.