Grooming can be a difficult experience for dogs and their groomers, often because the dog will not behave on the table or panics because it is not accustomed to grooming. There are several ways you can make the entire experience easier on your groomer and your dog.
Start With Obedience Training
Obedience training should be considered an essential part of owning a dog, much like check-ups and vaccinations. When your dog learns and follows basic commands, it will make grooming easier on the groomer and safer. Some dogs jump up and down on the grooming table when they are excited or immediately sit down when the groomer begins working on their back-end. Additionally, your groomer should never feel like they are in danger of being bitten, especially if they are doing nothing that is causing harm to your dog. Your dog should sit down or stand up on the grooming table without additional assistance from the groomer. Signs of aggression, such as biting, snapping, or growling should never be allowed.
Do Basic Grooming At Home
It may seem obvious to perform basic grooming tasks at home, but many dogs come into grooming salons without having been brushed for months. When you perform basic grooming at home, it helps your dog become accustomed to grooming, while preventing problems that will make professional grooming harder and more painful. Brush your dog at least weekly, if they have a short coat with straight hair. For dogs with thick, curly hair, you may need to brush them daily. Curly-haired dogs will develop mats and tangles easily, which are painful to remove. If you have not brushed or cut out mats and tangles, do not allow your dog to become wet. This only makes mats and tangles tighter and can be nearly impossible to remove. When grooming your dog, also be cognizant about their paws. Wipe-down their pads to remove dirt, poop, or other debris that may become lodged between their pads and contribute to mats.
Keep Grooming Services Simple
Work with your groomer to establish a simple grooming routine that works with you and your dog's needs. One concern is whether your dog will be brushed out versus having their hair cut shorter. Some people are strong advocates of brushing out dogs and using hand-scissoring techniques. If your dog is not a show dog, it is overkill for them to go through the lengthy, and sometimes painful, process of having their hair brushed out. Also, consider your environment; some people strongly oppose a short, summer cut on dogs with a double coat, because this extra layer of hair serves the purpose of keeping the dog warm.
Although different breeds of dogs have unique features based on where their breed originated, it is rarely advantageous in the modern era. For example, a husky is meant to have a long, luscious coat because it was intended to be a sled dog in the Arctic. Your pet husky will likely be indoors during the winter and will suffer outdoors in the warmer months with this coat. Keeping the coat short during the warmer months will lead to a happier, more comfortable dog, even if there is a risk of its coat not looking the same when it grows back.
Pet grooming is an essential part of having a clean and healthy dog. Obedience training, basic care, and keeping grooming simple will make the process easier.