Three Stylish Tips For DIY Dog Grooming Success
Believe it or not, your dog’s coat is the best window into their overall health and wellbeing. It’s appearance, texture and thickness—all are tell-tale signs of how well they’re eating and sleeping, if they have health problems, allergies, parasites and more. That’s why it pays to take good care of your dog’s coat, starting with routine grooming.
While a trip to the groomer is a great place to start, there are some fast and easy things you can do at home between those visits to the professional to help keep your dog looking and smelling their best.
- Brush. No matter what type of coat your dog has, they need it brushed more than once a week. Brushing every other day will keep mats at bay, move important oils throughout the coat and also help control shedding by strengthening the hair follicles. Make sure to select a brush that best matches your dog’s coat type, length and texture. If you need help selecting the right tools to use, there is a whole chapter about this in my new book.
- Deodorize. If you don’t have time to give your dog a full bath, you can still keep your dog clean, fluffy and fresh and remove dirt with the help of a waterless shampoo. To make your dog constantly huggable and to curb unpleasant odors between baths, you can also use an all-natural spray, such as a doggie deodorant. It’s a must have grooming item for on the go. After a day of hiking outdoors or a messy accident on the road, you can turn any paper towel into the perfect pet wipe with a little waterless shampoo.
- Neutralize. Odor neutralizers are a great way to get rid of odor without adding another scent on top. There are a plethora of options on the market for masking the scent, but for those who prefer no scent at all the Wahl Odor Neutralizer is a truly innovative product. The product works great and is all-natural so it’s safe for your pets and your home.
DIY Pro Tips
- Grooming a dog is all about team work. That’s why I came up with the Tango Theory. Like in a dance – and I do prefer to tango – both partners need to move synchronized and in harmony. The same flow should be followed when grooming your dog. You don’t PUT your dog into position, YOU LEAD him into position, like in a dance, and YOU must be the one leading it.
- Remember that grooming patterns have no sharp angles; they are curves smoothly connecting to each other. This should apply to your movement around the dog, from the moment you give him a bath, to the last snip of the scissor.
- The fact that most of us get our hair cut at a salon, it doesn’t mean that we don’t know how to take care between appointments. It is just common sense that the same principle should apply to our dog’s care.
- Dog grooming is not only about looks. A proper brushing is the best way for early detection of most of health issues. We can catch a rush, a scratch, a cut, a hot spot, a bump, an ear infection an ingrown nail, etc., by just brushing the dog correctly. Early detection means simpler solutions, less pain, faster recovery and cheaper vet bills.
Learning more about your dog is going to make you a better dog parent, and the tail wag of approval will make it all worth it.
Jorge Bendersky is a celebrity dog groomer in New York City and the author of “DIY Dog Grooming: From Puppy Cuts to Best in Show.” He grooms Manhattan area dogs and consults on dog grooming. He has been a finalist in the Animal Planet show “Groomer Has It,” a judge on TLC’s “Extreme Poodles,” and an expert on Animal Planet’s “Dogs 101.” He has also appeared on The Today Show, ABC Nightline, CW11, and E! News, and in the New York Post, the New York Daily News, the Chicago Tribune, and more.
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