How To Groom Your Dog in 9 Steps

Depending on the breed of dog, its fur coat may become oily or dry, leading to greasy fur or flakey skin. Every dog has its way of self-cleaning, although helping to groom your dog will ensure that your dog gets an overall wash, allowing it to shed old bacteria and make way for new shiny fur. It also keeps any smells from lingering on your hands and your furniture. Instead, they will smell nice and clean!

Each dog is different and some dogs may simply detest being groomed, so it’s best to go at your own dog’s pace so you don’t distress them.

Here is how you can groom your dog in 9 simple steps.

1. Prepare & Set-Up

Set up the area that you are going to wash your dog in and prepare your shampoo and water. There will likely be a bit of mess from bathing your dog, so keep towels nearby to mop up water spills and to dry your dog with after. 

2. Brush Their Fur 

If your dog’s fur is thin enough to brush, not tangled and easy to get a dog brush through, this is a good place to start. Give your dog’s fur a light brush, to begin with.

3. Brush Their Teeth

Next, if you have a toothbrush and dog toothpaste, this is a good time to brush their teeth. A dog’s mouth gets a lot of wear and tear so it’s important to keep their teeth in as good a condition as the rest of them. Dental sticks, soft bones and chew toys like the Willy & Dilly Rugby Ball are great for keeping dogs' mouths healthy and clean - plus they’ll have fun playing with it! 

4. Trim Their Nails

Like people, the nails of your dog can become outgrown which leads to their discomfort so maintaining their nails is a solution to this. Dog’s nails are very sensitive and require a good detail of attention when it comes to clipping or filing them, so it’s best to attempt this in a calm environment. Ensure that you know where the quick is within your dog’s nails as filing this can cause a lot of pain for your dog. 

5. Shampoo & Rinse

Now that you have combed your dog’s hair, brushed their teeth and trimmed their nails (if necessary), it’s time to give them shampoo and rinse. With your prepared area for washing, invite your dog into the bath or shower and begin to rinse them with warm water. Try not to shock them with cold water and likewise, avoid scolding them with hot water by checking that the water temperature is suitable. Add some dog shampoo to their wash and begin to clean their coat with it. Some dogs may take two shampoos and a rinse in between to clean away dirt, depending on their fur. With the shampoo, safely clean their back, front and sides including their legs and anywhere else you may want to wash. After shampooing, rinse the suds and you can then add a conditioning treatment to their coat. This can be a relaxing experience for your dog if they enjoy a massage and are comfortable in the washing area (e.g. bath or shower). If your dog isn’t comfortable being washed, then a simple shampoo and rinse are perfect as this will still leave them clean and fresh.  

6. Clean Their Ears

Inside a dog’s ears can become quite dirty, so either during your bath wash or after with a recyclable wipe, delicately clean out your dog’s ears. This will unblock any earwax and decrease the risk of ear infections in your dog’s ears.

7. Dry & Brush Their Fur

When you’re finished in the bath, remove your dog and dry them either with a soft towel or lightly with a low-intensity hairdryer. Some dogs will prefer to air dry and this is fine to do so, although a quick towel dry will help to wipe off excess water and stop your dog from getting too cold. A dog’s temperature can drop if their fur is wet especially depending on the breed, so make sure that your dog is kept warm while their fur is drying after their shampoo and rinse. It is easier to wait until a dog’s fur is dry before brushing as it is less likely to tug, so consider doing so to bring out their fur’s shine!

8. Clip Their Fur 

Not all dogs need their fur clipped although some coats can become matted and long without regular maintenance, so if this is similar to your dog then a small trim here and there will help. A professional dog groomer will be able to advise on the best way to clip your dog’s hair so if you can, consult them before trying it yourself at home. 

9. Give Treat & Praise 

Possibly the most important step of all, remember to give your dog praise and a treat after their grooming session. Praise throughout their washing experience is also a good way to keep your dog calm and comfortable as they trust you to take care of them. 

We hope that you have picked up a few tips on how to groom your dog in these 9 steps.

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