Regular dog grooming is not only used for body care alone, but also helps the owner in the early detection of diseases. In addition, combing is perceived by the dog as an affection, which has a positive influence on trust and attachment to people.
Consequences of poor grooming
Not every dog has to be brushed, this depends on the length and nature of the fur. Grooming the dog should also be adapted to the seasons, because thorough brushing is particularly important in spring and autumn in order to remove dead hair due to the change of fur. Otherwise, these can hinder the free air circulation of the underlying skin.
If dog grooming is neglected, the hair can quickly become matted, which not only leads to an unkempt appearance, but also represents a risk factor for ectoparasites and other skin problems, such as bacterial dermatids
Methods of grooming
Brushing is particularly important for grooming dogs. For long-haired dogs, loose hair should first be combed out of the top coat and especially the undercoat with a comb or harrow. Then the entire fur is brushed in long strokes using a hard brush – you should always work with the stroke. The strong brushing not only removes the loose hair, but also stimulates the blood supply to the skin. This promotes a better supply of hair follicles on the one hand and the secretion of sebum on the other, so that the skin is better protected against adverse conditions. Which brush is best suited depends on the nature of the dog’s fur. Both plastic materials and metal are offered in different variants.
How often should you bathe dogs?
The rule applies here: as little as possible, as much as necessary. Bathing should only play a subordinate role in the context of grooming dogs, as bathing too often destroys the sebum and acid protection film of the skin. If a bath is unavoidable, the water should be as warm as hand. In addition, the shampoo must be free of soap and perfume and have a moisturizing effect. It is particularly important that only special dog shampoos are used.
Grooming for different dog breeds
Depending on the type of fur, thorough grooming of the dog must be carried out at least once a week. For long-haired dogs such as the Tibetan Terrier or Long-haired Collie, however, it is best to do this daily. The equipment for grooming dogs in breeds with smooth fur and little undercoat is quite manageable. A brush is usually sufficient to remove the loose hair. For the care of rough and wire-haired breeds such as Airedale Terriers and Schnauzers, however, a trimmer is required, which removes the strong undercoat and the dead cover hair. Long-haired representatives require the most intensive care and should be worked on daily with a comb and a brush. Some breeds also need regular shearing. However, this should be left to a specialist, since the risk of skin injuries is relatively high here.
Grooming dog fur: a professional groomer gives tips
Jörg Fischer, owner of “By Aramis Dog & Cat – Grooming Salon for Dogs + Cats” from Apolda in Thuringia, is an expert in grooming dogs. He also points out the different care needs of different breeds. A distinction is made between four basic hair types: short hair (e.g. Rottweiler, Beagle), long hair (e.g. setter, Afghan hound), wire hair (e.g. wire-haired teckel, Airedale Terrier) and short-haired (e.g. German) German Shepherd, Spitz). “The most common problems for dog owners are dog breeds with medium and long fur. Often, due to unsuitable combs and brushes or the wrong combing techniques, the fur is only superficially cleaned of dust, dirt, dead undercoat / hair, ”says Jörg Fischer. If a dog is not combed often enough and not properly, matting can occur, which is difficult to remove with special groomer tools.
This is how dog hairdressers work
The owner of the care salon “By Aramis Dog & Cat” gives an insight into his working day and describes the steps to a “ready-made dog” as follows:
- “History”, i.e. the owner is asked about diseases, medication and special behaviors of the dog.
- Contact the dog.
- Inspect the condition of the dog’s fur and skin condition.
- Dust and dirt particles are removed by combing and brushing, possibly trimming depending on the dog breed or fur structure.
- Then wash with care shampoo and conditioner.
- Then complete drying of the fur with a blower or hand dryer.
- Then the cut or shearing according to breed standard or customer request.
- Claw, eye and ear care.
- Fur finish with oils that provide or soothe skin and fur with nourishing substances.
Grooming at home: this is part of the basic equipment
“It would be a good idea to take a closer look at grooming when buying a dog,” recommends Groomer Jörg Fischer. You can get good advice from the breeder or from a local dog groomer. When buying the basic equipment, it is advisable to take the dog with you to the store to try out a comb or brush.
The groomer also points out that combs and dog brushes should not be missing in any household. “Your dog benefits in two ways, because the gentle massage when combing and brushing stimulates the metabolism.” When a dog is bathed, this should “only be done with dog shampoos and conditioners that are tailored to the needs of the dog’s coat . The most common tool for removing dead undercoat is a so-called knife comb (eg Furmaster, Furminator, Carding harrow), ”says the owner of the care salon.
In summary: tips for grooming dogs
- Regular coat care prevents skin problems and matting
- It’s best to clear your dog of dead hair every day while changing fur
- Ask your breeder or a dog hairdresser about grooming your dog
- The right dog brush is the be-all and end-all, it must be adapted to your dog’s fur
- Try out combs, brushes or harrow and get advice when buying
- Get your dog used to combing and grooming as early as possible
- Do not bathe your dog too often in order not to destroy the sebum and acid protection film
- Only use dog shampoos and conditioners that are tailored to your dog’s coat