Dog Grooming Q and A Session

Are you your dog’s personal groomer? If you are, you’ve probably stumbled upon a grooming problem or two, or maybe you just want to confirm a specific question on how to properly groom your dog. It’s possible you’ll find the answer you are seeking in the following four questions.

1. By the end of summer, my Australian Shepherd’s coat is always full of burrs and foxtails and I have to clip all his hairs off. How can I keep the burrs out when he runs out in the countryside all the time?

Brushing him thoroughly everyday is the only solution, although not exactly an easy job. The chances are that if you haven’t done it up till now you wouldn’t be inclined to keep it up. Why let him spend a miserable summer full of painful sticker only to clip his hair off just when he needs it at the beginning of a cold season?

Have him clipped short in late spring or early summer-before the weeds dry up. He’ll come through the summer happier and have some hair grown back by winter.

2. I have a shaggy mixed-breed that I maintain with regular brushing and bathing, but his stools catch in the long hair and stick to his skin. I’m concerned that he will look funny if I cut the hair in that area. What can I do?

You might try regulating his diet to prevent soft stools, but in the meantime, it’s better to cut the hair even if it looks funny. Be careful, though, because some dogs instinctively move toward the scissors as you touch the hair.

3. My Beagle gets a bath once a month and he scratches a lot. Is one bath monthly too often?

Once a month bathing might be too often for some dogs. Be sure you are getting all the shampoo rinsed out. Pet grooming shops use a spray hose because that’s really the only way to be sure of getting all the soap out. Go to a hardware store and get one that simply pushes onto the faucet. Also, be sure that your dog gets a balanced diet for a healthy coat and skin and that he doesn’t have fleas.

4. I’ve recently learned that there is a clip particularly for Cocker Spaniels. Should they be clipped or is it a matter of personal choice?

Any dog that is kept brushed, clean, and healthy is a good-looking dog. Clipping will turn your furry, loving dog into a gorgeous, elegant blueblood. Why not have it done just once so you’ll at least know what you’re missing? One advantage to having him clipped regularly is that his ears and toenails will be looked-after, and Cocker Spaniels have a tendency to have trouble with both.