Grooming is an important responsibility for a dog owner.  Anyone who owns an animal knows that at one time or another, they are going to get into something that requires immediate cleaning.  There are hidden hazards hiding in the grass and all along outdoors areas for animals.  From thorns and stickers to fleas and ticks, the areas which animals require can pose cleanliness nightmares, even for a groomer. However, a clean well taken care of animal is a happy and healthy one.  It is not difficult to maintain a well-groomed animal either.  It takes a mindful eye, communication with your fur-buddy, and a few handy techniques and tips on grooming your dog.

Tips on grooming

When the time comes to start grooming your pet, there are several things to consider.

  • What time of year is it?
  • Do they need a hair trim for warm weather, or their nails trimmed from being indoors all winter?
  • Does your animal have fleas or ticks?
  • Is he/she going to be indoors or outdoors more often?

The above factors are important grooming aspects to consider.  In warmer weather, a long-haired dog may need trimming.  In colder weather, a dog who is normally active outdoors may need their nails trimmed more often as they are not getting worn down from running.

Different breeds of dogs also can require different levels of grooming.  A short-haired breed may need to be bathed more often while a long-haired breed will need weekly or even daily brushing.

Using a professional Groomer

You also have the option of using a qualified dog groomer.  These professionals can be very helpful for the busy pet owner.  With experience, the right tools and equipment, and animal know-how, your animal will be in good shape in these capable hands.  However, it is good practice to choose your groomer wisely – don’t be afraid to be picky.  There are many hazards to be found at the groomer that are commonly unknown.

  1. Clipper burns.  If your animal is due for a trim, remind the groomer to pay special attention to the sensitive areas, like the hindquarters.  Clipper burns are a common complaint from dogs returning from the groomer.
  2. Water Problems.  Dogs can get soap in their eyes or water in their ears during the bathing process.  The wrong kind of soap can cause corneal abrasions and will require eye drops.  Water in the ear can create a swimmers-ear-type situation which is very uncomfortable for the dog.
  3. Sedatives.  Sedatives should only be given by licensed Vets.  One small mistake in this area can leave your dog with organ damage or, in the worst case scenario, be fatal.
  4. Dryer Cages.  While these may seem handy for a quick dry off, it is not unheard of for dogs to receive heat stroke from the steady blasts of hot air.
  5. Self Hanging.  This is by far the worst hazard to be found at the groomer.  The hanging collar used to hold the animal still while the worker begins grooming your pet, can obstruct the airways of the animal and be fatal.


There are pros and cons to using a professional groomer.  More often than not, they are very capable and attentive to your animal.  They know the right grooming techniques for dogs as well as other animals.

You always have the options of grooming your pet at home as well.  With the right dog-safe shampoo, an extra set of hands, and the correct nail clippers, brush, and hair trimmer you will have your dog looking and feeling great right in the comfort of their own home.