Why not start out the new year by giving Fido a New Do. Pet owners might be stuck at home hoping for an end to COVID-19 but that doesn’t mean we can’t roll up our sleeves and turn the family room into a canine salon. It’s a fun, family project and your dog will love it.
Sprucing up your canines skin and hair-coat makes your dog feel good, helps to keep your dog’s skin and hair coat healthy, eliminates mats and tangles so your dog’s hair coat will insulate and protect him or her from the cold weather and gives pet owners a chance to check for canine lumps and bumps.
Canine coat shedding is a natural process that usually occurs each spring and fall. Indoor lighting and heating, as well as seasonal temperature variations all affect your dog’s shedding.
Although most healthy dogs shed twice a year, some breeds, like Pekingese, Collies and Great Pyrenees, shed all year-round.
Canine skin disorders, dietary imbalances, and hormonal fluctuations all affect dog hair growth and shedding cycles.
DOG HAIR COAT TYPES
How often your dog needs to be bathed and groomed will vary depending on your dog’s breed, his or her hair coat length and your dog’s lifestyle. Canine breeds that shed year round, like the Pekingese and Collie, need to be brushed regularly and groomed every 4 to 8 weeks to properly maintain their hair coats.
Dog breeds with fancy haircuts, like poodles and cocker spaniels, require hair coat care at four to six week intervals. Poodles shed but their hair does not come out until it is brushed.
Maltese and Yorkshire Terriers need hair coat attention every couple of weeks just to keep their long, silky canine coats tangle-free.
Labrador Retrievers, German Shepherds and other dog breeds with relatively short coats need a good bath and brush out at least 4-6 times a year.
Regardless of the breed, the canine bath is the single most important factor in dog grooming.
FACT: The more hair your dog has, the more coat care is needed.
FACT: A leash prevents excess wandering and makes dog grooming safer and easier for you and your dog. Dog leashes allowing 12 to 18 inches of slack lets dogs move around a little but not too much.
Dr. Carol’s TIP: For long-coated dog breeds make a “canine poop shoot” by trimming excess hair from beneath the anal area under your dogs tail. This promotes cleanliness and helps prevent several canine health problems, especially with those involving parasites and flies for dogs living in warm, humid climates.
Flies lay eggs in soiled dog fur which hatch into larvae called maggots. Maggots live on flesh, including your dogs’ and can cause life threatening, systemic canine infections. English Sheepdogs, Collies and Shelties are at high risk.
TIP: Using a table, rather the floor makes dog grooming easier. A rubber mat placed on your grooming table provides your dog with secure footing so he or she doesn’t worry about slipping and/or falling.
Dr.Carol’s Dog Eye Stain Remover Home Remedy:
Mix 2 tablespoons of Boric Acid into 1 cup of lukewarm water. Dip a cotton ball into the mixture to moisten it. Use the damp cotton ball to gently wipe your dog’s eye stains.
Dog Owners Home Hair Care Grooming Guide:
Use shampoo and conditioners that are specifically designed for dogs. Your veterinarian will recommend pet products that are best suited for your dog’s skin and hair coat.
Proper pet grooming equipment also makes your job easier. A slicker brush, along with a metal comb, a pin brush, and a bristle brush work well for most dog breeds initially.
Before bathing, brush out your dog’s hair coat and remove as many mats and tangles as possible. Mats are twice as hard to get out once they get wet.
Lubricate your dog’s eyes with artificial tears, or put a couple drops of Vitamin E oil, or Clear Eyes in each eye. Cotton balls work well to keep water and shampoo out of your dog’s ears.
Shampoo twice and rinse well. Leaving the second set of suds on your dog for five to ten minutes lets you get the most residual action from medicated shampoos.
Use canine coat conditioners sparingly then be sure to give your dog’s hair coat a final rinse.
Your dog may or may not tolerate being blow dried. In either case, keep dogs indoors until they are dry. Then brush out your dog’s hair coat.
Brushing your dog’s fur backwards helps to remove excess undercoat. Check for mats between your dog’s toes and footpads, be sure the toenails aren’t too long, and wipe out your dog’s ears.
MYTH: Bathing dogs more than every few months dries out their skin and hair coat. TIP: Proper grooming tools are essential to maintain your dog’s coat.