Caring for dogs or cats can be a big responsibility for first time pet owners. New pet owners need to know when their dogs or cats require professional pet grooming. This article applies to pet grooming only – standards for show animals are quite different. For professional pet grooming ask for references before taking your dog in. Ask if they have pictures of different breeds that they have done. Remember that while most professional groomers have been trained some groomers have had no professional training or got training on the internet. While this doesn’t mean that they won’t do a good job make sure that you feel comfortable that they can. Professional groomers won’t mind telling you where they got their training and how long they have been grooming. Choosing the right groomer is important and after finding a good one don’t be afraid to tip her.
Dog Grooming Tips for Short Haired Dogs
Short haired dogs like Chihuahuas, Pugs and Dachshunds need to visit the groomer mostly for nail trimming, expressing their anal glands, baths and teeth brushing.
Nail trimming should be done every 6 to 8 weeks or your pet could develop foot problems with their tendons that need to be treated by a veterinarian. If your dog has an active lifestyle and they wear their nails down by themselves they don’t need this done as often. A quick guide is if you can hear the nails clicking when the dog walks they need to be done.
Expressing anal glands need to be done if the dog is not able to express them by itself so it don’t get an infection. Usually larger breeds can do this by themselves. A sign of a dog needing its anal glands expressed is scooting its bottom on the carpet or floor. Groomers or veterinarians can express anal glands but only the Vet can treat infections caused by not having them expressed when they need to be.
Groomers can brush teeth to help maintain them but like humans this is not a substitute for proper teeth cleaning that is performed at a veterinary clinic.
Bathing to remove fleas can be performed by the groomer but finding and eliminating the source is just as important. Fleas mostly live in carpets so if dogs have fleas it is important to purchase a carpet powder made for killing fleas and vacuum the carpet. Visit the veterinary clinic to get a good flea prevention program.
Dog Grooming Tips for Long Haired Dogs
Long haired breeds like Shih Tzu, Lhasa Apso, Cocker Spaniels, Schnauzers and Poodles need to start being groomed after they have completed their immunization shots usually around 12 weeks old this is young enough for the groomer to be able to train them to be groomed. They need nail trimming, expressing their anal glands, bathing and teeth brushing as described above but they also need frequent brushing in between grooming to maintain a healthy coat.
Bath mats are caused by pets getting wet and not being brushed right away. Water sets the mats to the skin and brushing them is torture for the dog so they will have to be shaved. Check with your groomer to see if they have a discount for maintenance grooming it is often as cheap to take dogs in weekly or biweekly as it is to have them groomed less often and can be much less stressful for the pet and the groomer.
For long haired breeds it is important for the pet owner to brush them in between grooming to maintain their coats. Professional groomers have other techniques than just brushing and they can remove much more seasonal undercoat than just brushing alone will. Shedding can also be greatly reduced by providing pets with a good quality pet food.
Cat Grooming Tips
Short haired cats usually only need nail trimming and they should be started young they need to be trimmed every 2 or 3 weeks to keep them from scratching furniture.
Long haired cats should be groomed about every six months and they should be combed completely every 2 to 3 weeks. If the cats are matted when they arrive at the groomer they may have to be shaved.