The Importance of a Regular Grooming Routine

grooming your dog

No body wants to be the owner of a smelly dog or kitty. However, bathing your four-legged friend can be both a time consuming and difficult process. With these reasons, many people overlook the chore of daily grooming. I have noticed it is not until extreme odors pop up do pet owners take the responsibility of bathing their pet. I urge you not to wait. Dog grooming can be fun for both owner and pet. Here are some tips to help make it more enjoyable.

Take a Walk

Never try and groom a dog when it has a lot of energy. There is a good chance your dog does not like bath time. If he has a lot of pent up energy, He will wiggle and wobble and run, and be very hard to handle. Take the dog for a walk before hand, or bring it to the local dog park to run around. A tired pup will be more likely to cooperate.

Keep Treats Nearby

Give your dog treats and praise them while you work. By doing this, you will help create a more positive experience. The more enjoyable the activity, the more likely they will be willing to participate in the future!

Brush Before Bathing

Don’t be tempted to skip this step. While daily brushing is important, brushing before a bath is more important. I like to think that when I am brushing out a dog, I am giving it a nice little massage with the bristles of the brush. Depending on your dog breed, certain brushes work better than others. Experiment with the different variations and see what works best for you and pup. A thorough brush out will remove dust, dirt, and will also loosen tangles. If you come across a mat that just cannot be untangled, cut it out! Wet tangles are mush worse to brush out than dry ones. So get them out now while you can! 

Brushing Guide:

Long Haired Dogs: Brushed Daily
Short Haired Dogs: Brushed Weekly

Splish Splash Time For a Bath

Most dogs should be bathed at least once a month. Depending on activity and dirtiness, more bath time would be appropriate. Cover your grounds ahead of time and make sure you are stacked with towels, escape routes have been blocked out, and your are dressed in either a waterproof apron, or raggedy scrap painting-like clothes. When bathing, be sure to use plenty of warm water. Start from top and work your way to the bottom. Massage the soapsuds into the skin and fur.  Pay attention to the neck region where your dog wears his collar. When the water starts running clear, you are nearing the end. Grab one of those towels and blot your pup down to soak in excess water. You may need a couple towels, but regardless of your attempts it is safe to say that epic water shake down will occur. Be ready for it.

It’s up to you whether or not you want to air dry or blow dry your pups fur. If you do choose to blow dry, make sure it is on the lowest or coolest setting. Grooming your pup is more than just a show and smell. A clean dog is a comfortable dog, and comfortable dogs are happier.

Lisa Podwirny is the owner of Ketchum Mfg. Connect with her on Google+

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