A Guide For Daily Grooming (And How It Can Improve Behavior!)
Did you know that grooming your dog on a regular basis is not only a great way to keep them clean and healthy, but it can also improve his behavior, too?
This fat is just one of the many reasons why daily grooming is incredibly beneficial when it comes to training your dog.
The reason why it can help with many behavior problems is that it shows you have authority over your dog, and it’s also a great way to bond with your pet in general.
This is a very good thing – because dogs are social animals and love to feel like they belong to the family. Grooming is a great way to show this to them, and it can really go a long way towards encouraging your dog to follow your lead and obey your commands.
With this in mind, setting up a regular grooming routine is a fantastic idea.
How To Start A Daily Grooming Routine
When you first start your daily grooming sessions, you can use tasty snacks as rewards to keep them still and ‘distracted’ if your dog is usually reluctant to being groomed.
Doing this will usually keep them distracted long enough to let you groom them completely.
Eventually, you should be able to progress to giving verbal and physical praise on its own, without needing to give them the added incentive of a food reward – but food treats can certainly give you the edge when you’re just starting out.
The Basic Equipment
If you’re going to groom your dog every day, it’s worth investing in all of the equipment you need to do a good, thorough job.
First, you’ll need a few combs or brushes.
If you brush your dog every day you will keep their coat in a healthy condition, so this is an essential first step of the routine.
You’ll also need to ensure that you’re using brushes which are suitable for your breed of dog and the type of coat they have.
If your dog has a fast-growing coat it might need clipping or cutting as well. Sometimes heavy coats might need to be thinned out, too – so clippers may also be of use.
In general, you should teach your dog from a young age to accept the sound of clippers, because this can make the entire process much easier. You’ll also need a pair of nail clipping scissors, and you’ll need some careful practice on how to use them safely and effectively.
How To Groom Your Dog Properly
If you’ve never groomed a dog fully before, then it can be difficult to know where to start. So to give you the general idea, here’s a quick guide.
First, pick up your dog by putting one arm around the chest and forelimbs, and the other arm around their rear end. You may find it best to put them on a table while you’re doing this, for added convenience.
Next, simply hold your dog in a standing position while you’re grooming them – and you can always hold the collar with your hand to keep them still and calm while you get to work.
The first task to complete is brushing. You should use long, firm strokes to brush along your dog’s body – which shouldn’t be too much trouble because many dogs enjoy this sensation, so it’ll feel like a reward.
The aim is to brush your dog’s entire coat, including the tail and legs. Many dogs will enjoy long slow brushes along the length of the body, so again, they’re unlikely to put up much of a fuss at this stage.
Trimming Your Dog’s Nails
Trimming the nails of your dog can be a daunting task, and you could always have this performed by your vet if you’re not sure about doing it yourself (or even have a demonstration performed for you).
When you trim your dog’s nails you must take care not to cut the living tissue (the pink area inside the nail). If in doubt, always cut off less rather than more.
Just like humans, it’s best to cut your dog’s nails after the dog has been bathed, when the nails will be much softer than usual.
Cleaning Around The Eyes
Many breeds of dog tend to build up mucus in the corners of their eyes. This may seem to be tricky to deal with, but it’s actually quite simple. Simply hold your dog’s head firm and steady, then wipe the eyes by using a clean piece suitable material.
It’s usually easier to clean your dog’s eyes like once they understand the sit and stay commands because this will help to keep still while you’re cleaning them.
Checking Teeth And Gums
You should check the dog’s teeth and gums once a week to make sure the mouth is in good condition – as well as the teeth.
If you notice any problems, then it’s best to consult with your vet as soon as possible.