Proper Grooming is Important

Proper grooming is an important part of pet care. It not only makes your pet look better, but contributes to his or her physiological and psychological health.

Brush your dog thoroughly every day. This helps keep his or her hair in good condition by removing dirt, spreading the natural oils throughout the coat, preventing tangles from forming and keeping the skin clean and free from irritation.

It is best to start brushing your dog at an early age, but do not despair if he or she is an older animal. It is possible to train one to enjoy grooming. Proceed slowly, and be sure to use treats and plenty of praise to make the experience fun!

If you can hear your dog clicking over your floors, the toenails are too long. Nails that are too long can cause serious problems for your dog. Long nails are uncomfortable, can cause damage to muscles and tendons, can cause serious injury if the nails catch on something and tear off.

Have your dog's nails trimmed about once per month. If you do it yourself, you'll need a clipper designed specifically for the size of dog you have. Either a scissor- or guillotine-style clipper can be used. We like this Extra Heavy Duty Nail Clipper. You should also purchase a small bottle of blood-clotting powder, such as Kwik Stop. For more instructions, see our post on "How to Cut Your Pet's Nails."

If trimming your dog's toenails isn't something you feel comfortable with, we're always happy to cut them for you, the cost is $10. (If you're having your pet groomed, toenail trims are included and there is no extra charge.)

EarsEar care is an important part of grooming. Ear infections can not only be painful, but lead to permanent hearing loss. The signs of a problem with a dog's ears include redness, constant scratching, head shaking and odor. Always check the ears before and after swimming making certain they are dried out after getting out of the water. For more instructions, see our post on "How to Clean Your Pet's Ears."

TeethDogs can get cavities and develop periodontal disease, so their teeth should be cleaned at least twice per week. Rub teeth with gauze or cheese cloth soaked in a baking soda solution. Specially formulated toothpaste and cleaners are available for dogs too. Along with regular cleaning you can help maintain healthy teeth by providing chew toys and using hard dog foods.

When brushing your dog's teeth, it is best to use a small toothbrush that has soft bristles. If your dog will allow it, we'll be happy to brush their teeth as part of the grooming process. The charge for teeth brushing is $10.00. Cleanings performed by a veterinarian may also be required, particularly as your dog ages.

Bathe your dog once every two months or as often as needed. Be sure to brush him or her before each bath in order to get all of the tangles out of his or her coat. If you skip that step, and bathe your pet without brushing first, tangles will turn into mats. Matted hair is much more difficult to brush out, and may require shaving.