Enjoyable Grooming and Nail Clipping Starts in Puppy Class
Article obtained from www.ttouch.co.za
We are often contacted by owners who are having problems with their dogs when the time comes for him to be groomed or have nails clipped. Dogs have an uncanny ability to identify the sound of the nail trimmers or their bath being run. Many dogs dread routine grooming and some are truly afraid of it. Dog owners don't tend to enjoy the duty either, and dogs probably notice this. If our dogs can sense our stress, they could become stressed themselves.
If handling and brushing is dealt with right from the start in Puppy, class then grooming will not be a dreaded task later on. Many pups dislike grooming because they are simply not used to it. If you groom your puppy on a routine basis, he might be more cooperative later on. Keep grooming sessions positive and follow up with some healthy treats. With a little consistency, you and your puppy might realize that grooming is not so bad after all.
Our puppies are just like us, they need physical maintenance to look and feel their best. Fortunately, they do not need to bathe as often as we do, but you do need to learn how much grooming your puppy actually needs and keep it on a schedule. Generally, a pup's grooming needs depend on the breed and hair type. If your puppy has a skin, ear or nail condition, follow your veterinarian's instructions regarding grooming your puppy.
Most pups enjoy being brushed, and the sessions will strengthen the bond with your puppy while keeping his coat healthy. A pup's minimum brushing needs depend on hair type.
Long-haired puppies usually require daily brushing to prevent matting and tangling of hair.
Medium-haired puppies are also prone to matting and tangles and should be brushed weekly.
Short-haired puppies can typically go about a month in-between brushing.
Regardless of hair type, you can brush your puppy daily - especially if he enjoys it. More frequent brushing is recommended during shedding season to prevent build-up of undercoat and excess shedding. Choosing the correct brush or comb for your pup is an important first step to grooming. Although there are many different shapes and sizes, there are basically four different brush types.
Bristle brushes can be used on all coat types and vary according to the spacing between bristles and the length of the bristles. In general, the longer the hair coat, the more widely spaced and longer the bristles should be. Also, the coarser the hair, the stiffer those bristles need to be.
Wire-pin brushes, with or without rubber-tipped ends, are the preferred choice for pets with medium to long hair and those with curly or woolly coats.
Slicker brushes have fine wire bristles and are especially useful for removing mats and tangles.
Zoom Grooms can be used for shampooing as well as grooming and have soft rubbery teeth which hold onto the hair and stimulates natural oil production in the skin. These can be used on all lengths of fur.
Rubber curry combs are effective at massaging the skin and removing dead hair from short-haired breeds. It is also a good idea to have a Grooming Rake or Mat Breaker on hand to remove mats.
With all the above brushes and combs except the Zoom Groom, care must be taken not to rake the puppies skin as this is very painful and will really not encourage him to return for grooming the next time. Be gentle and take your time. Be really careful when removing mats or tangles. Brushing can and should be a pleasant experience for your puppy as the gentle stroking feels good on his skin. The best way to build trust and make this a pleasurable bonding time for both of you is to brush often, preferably daily. This prevents problem mats and tangles from developing.
Niki is a TTouch Practitioner for Companion Animals and gives regular puppy classes. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org