How Often Should I Have my Pet Groomed?

What grooming techniques are appropriate for your dog will greatly depend on the type of dog you have and the condition of their coat. Dogs with a short coat versus a long coat, for example, will usually need less brushing in order to remove excess hair that can build up and cause pet allergies to humans. You will also need to adjust your grooming routine and how often you bathe your dog if your dog develops a skin condition to ensure that it clears up properly.

General Guidelines

Unless your dog gets dirty playing outside or comes into contact with a substance that can be hazardous if left in contact with their fur and skin vets recommend that you do not bathe a dog more than once a month. Like humans, dogs produce a natural oil that allows them to keep their hair soft and healthy. Removing this oil too often can dry out the skin and lead to dandruff and other issues. In order to prevent your dog from producing too much oil or getting dirt stuck in their fur, have your dog brushed at least twice a week, especially if they are prone to matting.

If your dog has a long coat you may need to get it trimmed to prevent matting and excess hair build-up. You can do this yourself with clippers, but if you are inexperienced then it may be best to take your dog in to a professional groomer to have this done. This usually does not need to be done more than once a month, but this can change based on how quickly your dog's hair grows and how warm the weather is where you live. Your groomer can give you more information on what schedule would be appropriate based on your situation.

When considering a grooming routine, make sure you do not forget about the extra maintenance that is involved such as clipping their nails. Once again, how often this is necessary will depend on whether or not you are worried about your dog scratching the floor or if you have a dog that has nails that grow very quickly. Many breeds need their nails clipped at least once a week. If your dog has dark nails so you cannot see the quick inside you may wish to file the nails instead or take your dog to a professional to get them cut.

Tooth brushing is essential to grooming your dog. Allowing tartar to build up in your dog's mouth can lead to serious illness including heart disease which can be fatal if left unchecked. Brush your dog's teeth at least twice a week, increasing this if the gums show signs of infection. When you take your dog to the vet or groomer have them check the dog's teeth to make sure you are not brushing too hard and everything is being maintained the way it should be. You may need to take your dog in for a professional cleaning from time to time to clear excess buildup.

All dogs will require the occasional ear cleaning, but dogs with floppy ears are especially susceptible to infection and will need to be watched closely. You will need to determine what ear cleaning regimen for pets is appropriate alongside your vet. They will recommend an ear cleaning solution based on how often your dog comes down with ear infections and how much buildup they develop in their ears on a regular basis. Follow the instructions you are given on how to apply the solution and how often you should clean their ears.

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