Here are some of our most commonly asked questions, which may be of assistance to you. If not, send in your very own to email@example.com
Q: How often should I wash my dog?
A: There is no hard or fast rule to answer this question.
The best guide-line is to ask yourself how they fit into your lifestyle.
If your dog sleeps on your bed or the couch and is constantly handled and cuddled, then you may wish to bath them on a 1-4 weekly basis to maintain a hygienic and pleasant companion.
Bathing strips the natural oils from your pets’ coat, so use a gentle shampoo so as not to over dry their skin.
If your dog lives outside, then bathing every 1-4 months would be more appropriate.
This again is a personal decision and will depend on your lifestyle choice.
Don’t forget, if you brush your dog thoroughly on a regular basis this will reduce the frequency of bathing needed. Brushing will remove loose dirt and will distribute the natural oils through the coat which help to keep your dog clean.
Q: Which is the best brush to use?
A: If you have a medium to long hair breed the final decision is dependant on your level of commitment and skill, but as a general rule a ‘slicker brush’ is the most appropriate tool of choice.
I personally recommend a slicker brush with a curved head, as this allows for easier handling and choice of hold options for you.
Slicker brushes come in a choice of soft to hard bristles, so choose according to your pets coat and your ‘emotional acceptance’ level.
To reduce the amount of pull on your pets’ skin, brush with the growth of hair.
If you have a short haired breed then you can’t go past a Kong ‘Zoom Groom’. They are brilliant for removing loose hair.
Q: I want my dog to look curly and un-kept, why should I brush it?
A: Although the appeal of many breeds is their shaggy appearance, this must be put aside on grooming day so as maintain your pets coat in a healthy and good condition.
Brushing will straighten the curls for a short period, but it is important to remove any knots or debris in the coat. The curls will soon return.
If you do not brush, then the coat will knot quickly into a matted condition, the most humane solution then is to clip the coat short all over. Would you rather a smoother look for a couple of days or a very short ‘no curl at all’ look for a couple of months?
Don’t be fooled by a minimal number of breeders who say that your new puppy will not need any brushing at all. Like a ‘quick buck’, it is too good to be true.
Q: My dog won’t let me groom it, how can you?
A: Dogs are very much a hierarchy member and if they are higher than you in the pecking order at home, what they say goes.
When they go to a grooming salon, the groomer must have an air of dominance which the dog will respect and co-operate with accordingly.
This air of dominance is usually missing at home and your dog will take full advantage of this!
To address this issue, purchase a dog training/behaviour book (and follow it’s recommendations) or seek the professional help of a dog Behavioural consultant (and follow their recommendations). Failure to change the pecking order will insure failure to groom your dog.
Q: Why does my dog tremble when I take it to a grooming salon or Veterinary hospital?
A: This is your dogs’ best form of defence to ensure you will take it home again.
Your parenting skills will be tested to the max.
You have taken your dog from the comfort and security of its home and are asking them to confront other Behavioural boundaries. They have been removed from their security blanket (home) and have the memory of tolerating procedures which are not nearly as appealing as sitting at home or going for a walk.
The trembling is a viscous circle. If an owner is anxious about taking their dog somewhere, then the dog will pick up on this vibe and think ‘if they have something to worry about, then so must I’, this will result in the trembling. This then results in the owner thinking ‘my dog hates been here, so I have something to worry about’ and the thinking and the trembling go hand in hand in a viscous circle.
If you carry your dog, this enforces their need to worry substantially. The more you cling to them, the more they tremble, the more they tremble the more you cling to them……
To break this cycle, the owner must be relaxed and positive, with a blasé attitude. Your dog will then pick up the vibes ‘their not worried, so I needn’t be either’.
If you walk into a grooming salon or vet with a confident attitude, and your dog on a lead, your dog will be very relaxed and happy to be there.
Of course unfortunately your dog may have experienced a negative experience and this behaviour is understandable but can be reversed or taken into consideration.
The behaviour can also be a ‘learned behaviour’ and although you may now be relaxed about your visits, your dog knows that it receives extra fussing if it continues with this behaviour.
If you are leaving your dog, then once you have discussed your requirements with your groomer or vet, make your goodbyes short and sweet. Once you have left the premises, your dog will be like a child at kindy. It is hard to say good bye, but they soon forget about their trembling when the vibes change and there is much more to be interested in.