Short, almost non-existent hair coat – no grooming – right? Wrong! Even Weimaraners or Miniature Pinschers need grooming. They (and all their long-haired, curly-coated cousins) need grooming too. Nails need cutting on a regular basis (to prevent in-grown nails and infection), eyes cleaned (for tear stains), ears cleaned (for excessive wax build-up), teeth need checking (for cracks, chips of breaks) and anal glands checked (for infection or impaction).
Do you want to do this yourself? Depends how your dog feels about you poking in sensitive places. Or, take your dog to a Certified Groomer instead of trying to convince a squirming hairy bundle of hissy fit it’s okay to take those sharp nail clippers to their toes.
Let’s not forget about the “B” word either – BATH! Thankfully, bathing only needs to be done on an “as-needed” basis and depends on your pet (dry skin vs oily). Never use human shampoo as their skin is way more sensitive than ours.
Whew! Sound like more trouble than it’s worth? Consider this then – grooming, and stroking our dogs provides emotional and physical benefits for you and them. It teaches them what is acceptable behaviour and how to react to being handled by a stranger. Spend time teaching your dog these things at home through daily handling.
How to get them to sit still for nail clipping? Handle each paw daily, rub it gently then reward with hugs and treats. When they’re used to that, try a nail clipper on one nail at a time – more rewards. Poking in ears? Again, daily rub the ears, inside and out and practice with a cotton ball soaked in warm water to clean the outer ear canal. Teeth check? Run your thumb around the gums by lifting the lips carefully. Eyes? Use the cotton ball, warm water and soak first, then rub gently. Anal glands? Okay, this is an art that really needs demonstration – ask the Groomer or Vet to show you how.
Don’t want to groom your dog yourself – find a well respected groomer who’ll make your canine companion look like a million barks!