How To Groom A Dog With Long Hair
Dogs with long hair are always beautiful to look at. However, it is important to learn how to groom a dog with long hair.
Grooming the long and thick hair of a dog requires time, money and effort. Whereas short-haired dogs need to be groomed only once a week using a fine-toothed comb or a bristle brush, long-haired dogs like the Yorkshire Terrier have to be groomed at least two or three times a week.
The steps that show how to groom a dog are listed below.
When bathing dogs with long hair, to keep the hair from getting matted, it is a good idea to start bathing the dog top to bottom. The water is poured from the top to the bottom and the dog shampoo is also applied in the same manner. The fingers can be gently used during shampooing to remove any debris that has been caught up in the hair. Use a detangler cum moisturizing conditioner after the shampoo. Dry the hair using a soft and large absorbent towel wrap it around your pet to absorb the extra water. Any dog will shake away the water and this will help to lift up the hair.
The dog’s hair can be allowed to dry by itself or a hot air blower can be used. They can be even made to lie near a heater or the heat vent of an appliance to get the hair dried. Long-haired dogs would need at least two or three hours for the coats to become dry.
As part of the grooming procedure, you can trim the hairs that grow around the toe-pads. Long hair can pose a problem when they run and cause them to slip. Use special dog nail clippers to keep the toe nails from getting too long and sharp.
Regular brushing helps to clear tangles and prevent matting, and also invigorates the skin of your long-haired pet. Use a pin brush or a rotating comb for the purpose.
Ensure that you remove the collar or clothing before starting to brush the dog. Whereas a larger dog with long hair may be asked to lie down comfortably on a large towel, a smaller breed can easily be placed on your lap. Turn the dog on its back, brush the hair on its chest, armpits and under the legs. The hair on the dog’s ears can be combed using a pin brush. You can then brush the feathering on the tail, legs, neck, thighs and back.
Part a section of the hair, hold it down with one hand and comb the rest till it is smooth and free of tangles. Do the same after parting and holding down another section. A little amount of conditioner can be applied to each layer to moisten it. This will help to avoid breakage and maintain the coat in good condition.
The best time to apply medication and clean the dog’s ears is when the dog’s coat gets dry and prior to brushing the coat. The flea/tick medication is applied along the spine of the dog and this is evenly distributed when the coat is brushed. Cleaning the ear regularly prevents ear mites and infections of the ear. When cleaning your long-haired dog’s ears it is recommended that you use cotton balls dipped in a solution of witch hazel which are gently swabbed inside the ear. Do not venture too deeply inside the ear canal. Clean every nook and corner where the ear-mites tend to hide. The hair inside the dog’s ear can be removed gently with the help of tweezers.
Fluffing is done when you need to make your dog ready for a show. Prior to fluffing the hair, ensure that the hair does not have any tangles. To fluff up the hair, brush from the bottom to the top and use a brush with soft bristles for the purpose. After you complete brushing in the opposite direction, start all over again by brushing down from the feet, all the while trying to retain the fluffiness. Your long-haired pet is now fully groomed and ready for a show.
Use dog grooming clippers to groom the hair on the dog’s face. Run the clippers on your palm to ensure that it does not cut the skin. Move the clipper gently along the sides of the face. Hold the muzzle gently while doing this. For a short-hair groom, use the clippers at an angle. For a long-haired groom, keep the clippers flat.
Learning how to groom a dog is a fun experience and helps you to bond more with your pet.
Image credit: A well groomed Maltese: By Sannse, Wikimedia Commons
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