Regular grooming is essential for a dog to feel good and look their best. Regular grooming and brushing will give your dog a shiny coat and will help you discover fleas, ticks, and mites early on. Skin changes can also be detected in good time. Brushing also promotes blood circulation in the skin and stimulates fur growth. It also strengthens the bond between man and dog.
Depending on the type of coat – whether shorthair, wirehair, or longhair – grooming is more or less complex. Some dog breeds (like Poodles or Terriers ) also need regular grooming. When trimming, the dead top hair is professionally plucked out to stimulate fur growth again and to protect the natural protective function of the fur from cold and water. If trimming is neglected, skin eczema can develop.
Grooming begins in puppyhood
Ideally, the dog will be used to regular grooming as a puppy. Brush a puppy with a special puppy brush for a few minutes daily. Puppy brushes have very soft natural bristles so that the little ones are very lovingly used to brushing. Start on the back and sides – where the dog is least uncomfortable. After that, brush the head, chest, paws, and belly.
Treats help with adult dogs
If you have an adult dog who isn’t used to being brushed yet, have some treats handy. Again, start with the least sensitive areas and gently work your way to other areas such as the head, chest, paws, and abdomen. Hold your dog firmly while brushing, but don’t force it. With larger, less cooperative dogs, it makes sense for a second person to hold the dog and distract it. Most dogs sooner or later find the pleasure of brushing.
Brush down to the skin
Make sure you comb not only superficially, but down to the skin, otherwise felt plates can develop that can only be cut out with scissors. Hair can become matted quickly, especially under the ears, under the armpits, and on the abdomen.
Single and double coat
Grooming is naturally the easiest for short-haired dogs with a simple coat (e.g. Dobermann ). Care brushes with nubs are suitable here, for example, which transport loose hair to the surface, remove dirt particles and at the same time serve as a massage.
In the case of short-haired dogs with an undercoat (e.g. Labrador ), the excess undercoat must be brushed out regularly, but especially during the change of coat. For example, fine-toothed metal combs or brushes with fine metal bristles are suitable for removing the undercoat.
Grooming is most time-consuming for large, long-haired, double-coated dogs (e.g., Newfoundland dogs ). Here a grooming session can also last one to two hours. But even small dogs with long fur can be very care-intensive. For example, Maltese should be combed and brushed daily and also needs an occasional bath to keep their long hair from becoming matted.
Accessories for grooming
- Metal comb – a coarse-toothed metal comb is suitable for all coat types.
- Slicker brush – the slicker brush with a square head and short bristles is especially useful for double-coated breeds to remove loose hair and excess undercoat.
- Curry comb – with coarse tines, this can be used to remove excess undercoat on large dogs with a dense double coat
- Soft brush – a soft dog brush is used to polish short fur after brushing
- Gluing and slight tangles can be gently removed with a detangling comb.