Dog Grooming Secrets

How To Groom Your Dog At Home

Grooming Your Dog At Home The Ultimate Guide not only contains tips and secrets that will make the experience of grooming your dog pleasurable and hassle-free, it puts together a plethora of grooming information on different dog breeds. With Grooming Your Dog At Home in your hands, you can become a pro yourself. No more trips to the expensive salons, spas or even contacting a professional groomer every month. This handy E-Book package is a treasure-trove of valuable information for all dog owners who wants their dogs to stay healthy and feel healthy. It doesnt matter whether you have a cumbersome large breed like a St. Bernard or a Great Dane or a tiny Chihuahua. You can now learn the ultimate secrets of the professional dog groomers and provide your cherished family member with outstanding grooming all on your own.

How To Groom Your Dog At Home Overview

Rating:

4.6 stars out of 11 votes

Contents: Ebook
Author: Amy West
Price: $19.95

Download Now

Chapter Grooming Emergencies Knowing Doggie First

Preparing for a Grooming Handling Minor Grooming Chapter 18 It's Showtime Grooming a Dog for the Ring 275 Grooming for the Chapter 19 Going Pro Starting a Dog Grooming Business 289 Deciding Whether Professional Grooming Is Right for You 289 Weighing the pros and cons of starting a grooming business 290 Chapter 20 Ten Popular Myths About Grooming Dogs 313 Chapter 21 Ten Timesaving Grooming Tips 319 Chapter 22 Ten Best Ways to Make Grooming a Pleasant Experience Getting into a Grooming Taking Your Time While Showing Your Dog that Grooming Is Procrastination Grooming Appendix Grooming Grooming your own Grooming for yourself and Grooming Grooming and Dog-Related

Deciding Whether Professional Grooming Is Right for

Now that you've honed your dog grooming skills, you're finding that the oohs and ahhs recognizing your beautiful dog are turning to dollars and cents. The word is spreading, and those neighbors who once slipped you some cash for doing a good job taking care of their pooches now are telling all their friends about you. You're almost there, right You're almost in business for yourself. Weighing the pros and cons of starting a grooming business Owning your own business can be a dream come true or a nightmare, depending on your willingness to work and your entrepreneurial spirit. Here are some valid reasons for wanting to own your own grooming business If you're currently unemployed, time isn't so much a factor, but if you have a full-time day job, planning to start a grooming business on the side may take up what little time you have left. Where are you planning to work in your grooming business Out of your home In a separate shop someplace Or are you going to be a mobile groomer The...

Setting Aside a Grooming Space

After you have all your equipment, you have to figure out not only where you're going to put it but also where you're going to groom your dog. Grooming requires enough room to brush and comb out your dog without getting in the way of cooking dinner, watching TV, or doing laundry. It takes a lot of room. Your grooming area doesn't have to be elaborate, but it needs to be located where you can take your dog to work on him without many distractions. After all, you don't need kids underfoot while you're trying to trim your dog's coat, and you don't want your dog running around while you're trying to bathe him. The basic needs for a grooming place are as follows i Enough room to set up your grooming table. i Enough shelves and storage areas to keep grooming supplies stowed safely. But most people aren't made of money, and in some cases, space is at a premium. When that's the case, you can sometimes make do with a room doing double duty for grooming. A spare bedroom can quickly be made into...

Grooming Specialties

In this part, you discover the intricacies of grooming a dog from dealing with skin and hair problems to turning professional and opening your own business. Whether it's handling serious hair disasters (like sticky gum in the fur) or recognizing a hereditary or congenital problem with your dog's coat, I cover it. I also cover emergencies that I hope you never run into while grooming your dog, and I tell you about the dog show scene what's it all about and how important grooming is when showing your dog.

What Good Grooming Is All About

Understanding why grooming is important to your dog's health Tallying up the costs of grooming Determining which dogs (and coat types) need the most and least grooming know that when I think of grooming, the vision of the froufrou doggie beauty parlor springs to mind, complete with bows, silly hairstyles, and nail polish. I've got news for you I've never put a bow in my dogs' hair, and my dogs would protest mightily if I even suggested painting their nails. But grooming's important. No one likes a bad hair day. Your dog certainly doesn't he feels just as uncomfortable as you do when his hair is all ratty and snarled. But grooming is more than just having him look and feel good it's vital for his health. And it's more than just a bath it includes brushing, combing, keeping his teeth and ears clean, clipping his nails, and keeping him in top shape. In this chapter, you get an overview of dog grooming and why it's so important for your dog's health and well-being. You also find out how...

Showing Your Dog that Grooming Is

After reading that headline you're probably thinking, Yeah, right. How can a dog enjoy grooming Well, believe it or not, many dogs do enjoy it. They enjoy the attention they get from their owners and love being fussed over. Dogs that love grooming aren't born that way they're made. They've been brought up being groomed regularly and taught that grooming is a special time with their owners. You can try the following to make your grooming more fun i Starting your grooming session after a vigorous play session when your dog is a bit tired. i Avoiding anything that may cause pain. It takes only one painful experience to make him change his mind about grooming. i Giving him plenty of praise and perhaps a special treat or toy when you're done with grooming your dog.

Refining Your Dogs Grooming Manners

Good grooming manners don't happen overnight. Familiarizing your dog with procedures is essential in anything you're trying to get your dog to do. Dogs need to be trained in good grooming manners so they get used to the idea of being cleaned and preened they may even come to enjoy it After all, grooming is attention and time spent with you. Unfortunately, most dogs are introduced to grooming at the worst possible time, when they're either dirty, have mats in their hair, they need their toenails clipped, or all of the above. They struggle (Who wouldn't ) because they don't like being held or having their feet touched or their fur pulled. Remember when you were a kid and had a mat (or bubblegum) in your hair The best way to instill good grooming manners in your dog is to make the experience a pleasant one. Otherwise, your dog simply won't participate or will do so only grudgingly. The best time to train a dog to accept any kind of grooming procedure is when he's a puppy. Puppies are...

Training Your Dog for Grooming

Drilling your dog on essential grooming manners Helping your dog accept being touched in sensitive areas such as paws and face Establishing a grooming routine Handling troublesome dogs 5o you dread the idea of grooming your dog. All dog owners, at one time or another, have had a dog they just couldn't groom. Perhaps a dog's bad experience being brushed or combed was to blame, or maybe you cut a toe-nail too short (Ouch ) and your dog bled and now won't let you near him, or maybe your dog just doesn't like the bath. Whatever the reason, you're facing a dog who doesn't like to be groomed. The truth is you still can have a dog who at least tolerates grooming. The trick is to train your dog to get him used to what you normally do when grooming him, such as putting him on the table or gently handling his mouth or feet. In this chapter, I give you great pointers on how to show your dog that the basics of grooming are not such a bad experience after all.

Getting into a Grooming Routine

Everyone complains about being in a rut. But some ruts actually can be good, especially when it comes to grooming. You see, dogs love routine, and when it comes to discovering what to expect from their owners, they're masters at it. That should tell you right away that today you need to start a grooming routine. Every day at the same time, plan to do a grooming task, such as brushing out your dog's coat, brushing his teeth, clipping his nails whatever needs to be done. Your grooming tasks don't have to be major productions, like a full brush out, unless, of course, that's what's scheduled in your routine. Maybe you only need to clean your dog's ears or brush his teeth. Whatever the case, if you establish a daily grooming routine, your dog will come to expect something every day at that time, and if you make those sessions fun (see the suggestions later in this chapter), your dog actually will enjoy them, too. Pick up a white-board calendar and mark the grooming task you're going to do...

Taking Your Time While Grooming

One reason some dogs hate grooming is the way their owners handle them. Do you just start grabbing your dog and running a brush or comb through his fur, grumbling all the while that you just don't have time to do this Think about it. If you rush through grooming, your dog will look at it as a time when you're hurried and possibly upset. Dogs pick up on your emotions pretty well. If you're in a hurry to get done, the dog's going to be in a hurry to get the heck out of there. NG Here's another more important reason to take your time while grooming your dog When you get in a hurry, you make mistakes, and some mistakes can be downright dangerous for your dog like being in a hurry with clippers or with scissors. Any time you cause pain to your dog (such as clipping a toenail too short and cutting a quick), you solidify his attitude about not wanting to be groomed in whatever way you caused him pain.

Establishing a Grooming Routine

You can make your dog happy by establishing a solid routine in his life that includes everything from feeding, training, and grooming to playing with and walking him. Sound boring It isn't, really. When dogs have a routine, they know what to expect and often get ready for it before you do. For example, when you walk your dog first thing in the morning, I guarantee that by the third day, he's waking you up to go for that walk. Plan your grooming sessions to become part of your dog's daily, twice-weekly, or even weekly routines. When you can make grooming sessions pleasant and routine, your dog will help you by anticipating the brushing or clipping session just like the morning walk. The ideal grooming calendar depends on how much work your dog routinely needs. You need to set it up and stick with it to find out whether it works for you and your dog. As a general rule, your grooming schedule may devote

Grooming and Dog Related Magazines

Whether you want to subscribe or just pick up a copy at your local newsstand, here are some great dog-related magazines that can help you keep up to date with all of the innovations in grooming 1 Dog World (www.dogworldmag.com) This magazine caters to both pet and show dog owners. It includes good health and grooming articles.

Ten Timesaving Grooming Tips

Making grooming easy for you Getting around certain grooming problems m a rooming is time-consuming there's no doubt about it. Lucky for you, I've got some handy tricks you can use to speed up the time you spend on grooming your dog. The tips that I give you in this chapter are little tricks of the grooming trade that I've picked up through the years that I love being able to share with you. The tips focus on grooming your pet if you want tips for grooming your dog especially for the show ring, check out Chapter 18.

Longhaired grooming tools

Grooming a longhaired Dachshund is mostly a matter of keeping all those tiny little tangles from becoming great big mats. It takes a little skill and practice, but mostly it takes a commitment to regular grooming preferably a comb-through every day. Several books give good instructions on grooming longhaired Dachshunds for the show ring or for pet homes, but nothing beats watching someone who knows the ropes demonstrate for you. Your breeder may be the best person to show you a professional dog groomer may also be willing to illustrate the basics. You can also talk to breeders at a dog show for tips and demonstrations. Professionals may recommend additional tools, but here are the basic tools for grooming a longhair

Grooming a Rough or Broken Coated JRT

Jack Russell Terrier With Bent Tail

Rough or broken-coated JRTs require a bit more work. Left to grow naturally, the coat may not look neat and tidy. Although grooming the roughs or brokens is more involved, you may derive more satisfaction from the finished product. When this grooming procedure has been completed, mark the date on a calendar and circle the date ten days from then. On the tenth day, rake out the undercoat with the trimmer knife, which is used only for raking and never for stripping. A trimmer knife has teeth on one side and a wooden handle. Use it sparingly, because this tool can cut the hairs it is only used for combing the dog lightly between uses of the stripping knives. (Do not dull the trimmer knife Some people prefer to use a piece of volcanic rock, found in equine supply shops and called a bot block, to maintain the coarse outer coat of the JRT. Run the volcanic rock over the dog's coat to remove the hairs that stick up. This tool is handy for grooming the legs, because grooming them may be...

Practicing Good Grooming

Grooming can become part of a daily or weekly routine, and it's a good idea to start grooming your puppy the very first day you bring him home. Your grooming session will differ depending on your dog's age and coat, but a regular grooming routine will usually go something like this

Taking Note Keeping a Grooming Diary

A grooming diary is an invaluable tool for grooming your dog. It doesn't have to be fancy just something in which you can make notes to keep track of what you've done and how your dog looks and reacts. Jot down the following list at the front of your diary and be sure to include this basic info about each grooming session i Grooming procedure(s) Did you simply trim your dog's nails and brush his teeth, or did you groom him from nose to tail i Notes You may develop a new technique that you want to try again in the next grooming session the notes can serve as a reminder. Grooming can arguably be a piece of cake or a nightmare, depending on your patience and the breed of dog you've chosen. Although I don't think you should choose your dog strictly on the basis of whether the dog needs little grooming, I think it is something that should factor into everyone's decision-making process when choosing a dog. If you're in the market for a new dog, I suggest you do your research thoroughly and...

Inside and Out What Affects a Dogs Coat and Grooming

Understanding parts of the dog and how they relate to good grooming Exploring how diet and good care can affect your dog's health Discovering how haircoat, genetics, and other factors may affect your dog's grooming 5o you're well acquainted with the importance of good grooming for your dog's health and well-being if you read Chapter 1, you're well on your way and you've grabbed your slicker brush and Greyhound comb and decided it's time to make your dog beautiful. Before you get started here in Chapter 2, I'd like to let you know about the canine anatomy and how it affects the way you groom your dog. After all, it's more than heads and tails It's croups, withers, and hocks. Likewise in this chapter, I tell you about the effects of good care and bad care on a dog's skin and coat and how you can use that information to make a difference when grooming your pooch. Lastly, you can find out about hereditary and congenital diseases that can affect your dog's good health.

Grooming a Smooth Coated JRT

For a smooth-coated JRT, start with a thorough, all-over brushing, followed by a rubdown with a well-soaked, tightly squeezed magnet cloth A magnet cloth (or, as it is sometimes called, a magic magnet cloth) is used for its ability to absorb and hold water. It is often yellow and is made of a washable cloth fiber that can be washed over and over again but not machine dried. Equine or tack stores often sell them for polishing horse's coats. Some dog supply catalogs offer them in the grooming section. The cloth removes old hair and debris, giving a nice fresh look to the coat.

Chapter Grooming Your Chow Chow

1 When to start grooming him Begin his grooming sessions as soon as you take him home and don't worry that he's just six weeks old or six months. It's never too early to put him on a grooming regimen, so don't feel sorry for him. Besides this breed thinks no end of itself, so pride themselves on their cleanliness and their need to be well groomed and looking magnificent. By grooming your Chow Chow, you would really be pandering to his vanity, besides also helping him to maintain his majestic look and attitude. Lastly, it will help forge a closer and better link between you. If you use a sturdy grooming table it will give you better control of the dog on a table and it'll save your back. You can also build a table using inexpensive materials found at the hardware store. 4 A well-balanced grooming shears, about 7 long. Maintain it well so that it remains sharp and has a good balance Bathing With your tools in hand, you can begin the grooming procedure. Bathe your dog monthly or oftener,...

Stand Stay for Petting and Grooming

Once he can stand and stay, introduce petting and grooming. When you first ask someone to pet him, kneel beside your dog and have your hands on his collar and stomach to steady him. Have a treat out in front of him to give him something to focus on. Have your helper just touch his head. Build up to having him stand for a thorough body examination, running your hands down his back and legs, without your having to hold him. Brush him when he is in a stand-stay and insist he stay. And don't forget to use your stand-stay when at the veterinarian. He or she will be very appreciative

Grooming Dont wait

You may be tempted to wait awhile before grooming your Dachshund especially if you have a smooth (see Chapter 3). Isn't that too much to do on the first or second day Not at all. Grooming is a crucial part of your Dachshund's routine. It keeps your pet healthy, accustoms him to handling by you or anyone else (your vet most importantly), and alerts you to any lumps, bumps, bald spots, parasites, or other health problems before they become too serious. Puppies don't need much grooming at first, but starting a grooming routine on the first day helps train your dog to accept and even enjoy grooming. Even if you plan to have your longhaired or wire-haired Dachsie professionally groomed, daily maintenance sessions with you are important for your dog's health and are great for stay-acquainted time. See Chapter 16 for more information on grooming your Dachshund.

Grooming Supplies

Need grooming supplies A bunch of suppliers and manufacturers retail and wholesale, mail-order and Internet are out there at your beck and call, ready to provide for your every grooming need regardless of your status as a groomer, whether an amateur or a professional. Check out these suppliers I GroomStar (www.groomstar.com) Grooming supply purchases from GroomStar can be made either by mail-order or over the Internet. I The Shampoo Lady (www.theshampoolady.com) The Shampoo Lady sells shampoos and other grooming supplies at wholesale prices I American Pet Pro (www.americanpetpro.com) American Pet Pro offers grooming supplies over the Internet and by mail-order.

Daily Grooming

Daily grooming can help you find ticks that have not yet become embedded in the skin. Ticks can be picked up on the comb and flicked into a container of alcohol. Embedded ticks should be removed immediately. First, forget that old wives' tale about coating ticks with petroleum jelly, burning their rear ends with a match or lighted cigarette, dousing them with lighter fluid or gasoline. Just protect fingers from the tick's body fluids with surgical gloves or a plastic bag, grasp the tick firmly, rock it back and forth a few times, and pull it out. If a patch of skin comes along, it's unlikely that any of the tick's head has been left behind.

Grooming Tools

If you go to your local pet store and walk down the grooming supplies aisle, you might be overwhelmed by all the tools and products. There are combs, rakes, and brushes of all sizes and styles, scissors, clippers, shedding blades, and more. Then there are all different kinds of shampoos and conditioners. Grooming dogs is big business, and all these supplies support the industry. Show-Dog Grooming In conformation shows, each individual breed must be shown in a certain way which includes how the dogs in each breed must be groomed. Australian Shepherds, for example, are called a natural breed and must be shown as natural as possible, although the whiskers on the face are usually trimmed, and the paws are trimmed to make them look nice and neat. Poodles, on the other hand, have a very elaborate grooming regimen. Other grooming tools include a set of clippers with blades and guards. Learning to clip your dog is definitely an art, and first attempts are rarely attractive. But the hair will...

Caring for Your Canines Teeth Toes Ears Face and Ahem Other Areas

ZM fter you discover the basics of dog grooming brushing, combing, and W bathing you have to tackle some tougher jobs, like brushing your dog's teeth, cleaning his ears and face, trimming his toenails, and yes, some less glamorous and even gross tasks. Don't panic All dogs need these essential grooming tasks done regularly. In this chapter, I show you how you can do them without a struggle.

Other Useful Reference Books

As if Dog Grooming For Dummies isn't enough, here are some other books that can help answer any questions you may have about grooming in general or specifically i All-Breed Dog Grooming (TFH Publications, 1987) This grooming reference covers different breeds. i Poodle Clipping and Grooming The International Reference by Shirlee Kalstone (Howell Book House, 2000) You got it - this is a great poodle clipping reference book. i Ultimate Dog Grooming by Eileen Geeson (Firefly Books, 2004) Another nice book on dog grooming.

Determining whether somethings really wrong with your dog internally

Plenty of good reasons exist for grooming your dog. One such reason is finding out the difference between a coat that looks bad because it's dirty and one that looks bad because something is wrong with your dog. Grooming also eliminates various problems associated with an ill-kept dog, such as external parasites or open sores caused by a matted and dirty coat that traps bacteria.

Coaching Your Canine to Be Groomed

Grooming your dog requires a bit of a partnership. Although you don't necessarily need your dog's full compliance when grooming, it sure makes things easier Good grooming starts when your dog is a puppy. Getting her used to routine tasks, like being brushed and combed and having her feet handled so you can clip her toenails, is all part of grooming. Otherwise, your dog may fight you, and you may end up with results neither of you will like (at worst, an injury at best, a bad hair day). Teaching your dog simple cues, such as Sit, Down, and Stay, is important to wise grooming. If you can't keep your dog in one place, it's very hard to do anything. Chapter 4 provides advice for training your dog to enjoy grooming (or at least tolerate it and cooperate).

Dont Worry Be Happy Keeping It Upbeat

Lastly, keep your grooming sessions positive and upbeat. Being angry and grumpy makes for an unhappy dog and only frustrates you. Never groom your dog while angry or frustrated. If you can't be upbeat while grooming, skip the grooming session for today and try tomorrow or just do a quick brush over or quick exam. Then give your dog a treat for being so good and curl up on the couch with him with some ice cream and watch your favorite movie. I guarantee doing so will improve your outlook and make for a better grooming session tomorrow.

Considering the Necessary Investment

Now that you know that good grooming is necessary for your dog's health and well-being, you may wonder just how much it costs to have a good-looking dog. You may have visited the local groomer and asked how much bathing and or clipping your dog costs. If you've done the math, you know it can be a bit pricey, especially when money's in short supply. The truth is that when you start grooming your dog, you can do things just to get by, all the while keeping an eye out for the many places where you can buy really good equipment and supplies for not a lot of money. (Be sure to check out Chapter 3 and the Appendix for some good sources for grooming supplies.) Your investment, however, isn't gauged entirely in terms of money. Your time is worth something, and grooming requires some of that, too. You may find that grooming is expensive in time and money, or you may find it relatively inexpensive. Much of the cost of grooming depends on what kind of dog you have, what type of hair your dog...

Having the Proper Tools on Hand

Different coats require different grooming methods, and different grooming methods require different equipment and supplies. After you familiarize yourself with your dog's coat, you have a better idea of what tools and supplies you need to properly groom your dog. For example, depending on your dog's coat, you may be simply brushing and bathing, or you may be clipping or stripping it, too. Good grooming requires more than brushing, bathing, and possibly clipping your dog. It also involves routinely trimming his toenails, brushing his teeth, cleaning his eyes and ears, and possibly expressing his anal sacks. Chapter 3 explains what equipment you need to tackle these jobs and where to find it, and Chapter 6 provides the instruction.

Mastering Brushing and Bathing Basics

M m ood grooming is a part of caring for your dog, but most of what you do In this chapter, I cover the proper techniques for brushing, combing, bathing, and drying your dog. You can find out about other grooming basics like clipping your dog's toenails and cleaning his ears and teeth in Chapter 6. The key to a successful grooming session is making it a fun and enjoyable time for you and your dog. Read on for advice on how to do just that

The Part of Tens

In this part, I cover some interesting facts that can help make you a more knowledgeable groomer and take some of the hassle out of the grooming experience for you and your dog. But wait there's more Turn to the handy dandy Appendix at the end of the book to find dog grooming Web sites, the names of grooming magazines, and other stuff that helps you discover even more about grooming and get the equipment and supplies you need. You see this icon any time I suggest time- or hassle-saving advice that makes grooming your dog easier or more comfortable.

Becoming a Pro Yourself

You may enjoy grooming so much that you're thinking about becoming a professional groomer. After all, you like dogs and may have a knack for grooming pooches. However, before you hit the books and start working toward your certifications, remember that going pro means that you're going into business, and you have to be a savvy businessperson in addition to being a dog groomer.

Gathering the essential equipment

Good equipment is necessary for doing the job right. You don't, however, need to buy the most expensive equipment. In fact, some of the best equipment can be made or purchased without spending too much money. For example, I have a wonderful grooming table that a friend's son made for me. I tell you where to find quality grooming supplies at bargain prices in the Purchasing Your Supplies section later in this chapter. So what equipment must you have Much depends on your dog's breed. For example, an Alaskan Malamute is going to have different needs than a Poodle, and both are going to have different needs than a Bluetick Coonhound. So some of the equipment may not be optional if you have a particular type of dog. Another consideration is the type of grooming you're doing whether it's for home or for show. The following lists describe the equipment you need for basic grooming of all dogs. Yes, although these lists are quite lengthy, you probably can find ways to save money here and...

Making Your Dog Comfortable

Do you like going to the dentist Unless your dentist is one of those who can guarantee a painless visit, the answer is probably, No. Why Well, besides the possibility of having your teeth drilled, chances are you aren't comfortable going to the dentist. When you groom your dog, he often isn't comfortable with what you're doing and probably is thinking, You're going to comb around my WHAT or Don'tyou dare get near my paws with that clippie thing The upshot Make your dog as comfortable as possible during each grooming session. Temperature is important when performing any type of grooming procedure. Being too cold or too warm makes any dog upset. Be sure the temperature is just right for the air in the room and the water in the tub. Although you may find a hot bath relaxing, your pooch won't it's too hot. Pour a tepid bath (just warm to the touch). Dogs don't like cold showers, either. To make grooming a pleasant experience, try i Picking up some inexpensive rubber-backed rugs (nonskid,...

Putting on the Finishing Touches at the Show

When you arrive on the show grounds, you're likely to see a lot of confusing activity. There'll be people rushing about with their dogs on leads, people trying to do some last-minute grooming, and people just taking in the sights. If you have enough time, you can stake out a place to groom your dog in the designated grooming area. Sometimes but not always these areas are assigned to certain breeds, so look for a place where your breed may be. If there's a space where you can set up your table and finish grooming, great Otherwise, use any place you can find (even out in the parking lot, as long as it's not raining or too cold).

Preventing an emergency

The best way to handle a grooming emergency is to prevent it from happening in the first place. If you look around your grooming room, I'm sure you'll see plenty of lighted candles that need to be put out, especially the ones that flare up into, well, emergencies when you add a dog to the mix. Here are some items that can cause problems in your grooming area Grooming nooses (neck and body) Use these restraints only when you're attending to your dog's grooming needs. Otherwise, store them away from your dog to prevent strangulation and injury. Never leave your dog unsupervised in a noose. Make sure your entire grooming area has proper ventilation, because without it, dogs can become overheated in hot, stuffy areas. Grooming tables and other equipment Make sure your grooming table is sturdy and that all your equipment is in working order. Be aware of what can happen if your dog jumps off the table or your equipment malfunctions.

Getting Started

In this part, you discover the basics of why grooming is important and how to get ready to groom your dog. I cover why you need to groom your dog (some reasons may surprise you ) and whether you need perhaps to hire a professional groomer to help get you started (or do the job instead). I cover the basics when it comes to coat types and anatomy the stuff you need to know before breaking out the brushes and combs. I also cover how you can train your dog for grooming. As odd as that may sound, if you can't get your dog to stand still for a brushing, it's tough to keep him clean. Lastly, I talk about buying quality equipment and supplies for grooming your dog including what works and what doesn't.

In the weeks leading up to the show

Although grooming can't fix a real fault, good, focused grooming well in advance can, on occasion, diminish a flaw to the point to where it isn't quite as noticeable. This tactic is helpful when showing, because dogs don't spend much time in front of a judge in the ring to begin with, and if your dog truly is a good specimen with the exception of that one flaw, the judge may decide the flaw really isn't that important, if you've done everything you can to minimize it.

Knowing When to Call a

Although you're ready to invest your time and money in grooming your pooch, you may run into situations in which you need to rely on the skills and advice of an expert. Precious, your Bearded Collie, may tangle with a sticker bush, and you may not have time or patience to pick every last sticker out of her coat. Maybe Rex, your Great Dane, is easy to bathe and brush but a gigantic pain when you're trimming his nails and brushing his teeth. Perhaps you adopted a dog who's never been groomed before, and you need help getting his coat into shape so you can then maintain it. You may even love to keep Sissy, your Standard Poodle, in a New Yorker cut, but you can't trim your own bangs. Assigning children to groom the dog usually isn't a reliable alternative to routinely grooming the dog yourself. No matter how much your kids promise that they're going to take care of the dog (including grooming), don't believe them. This task ultimately falls on an adult in the household. Younger children...

Purchasing Your Supplies

Okay, so now you have your list of equipment and supplies that you need to buy. Looking over the list of what you have versus what you need or want (doesn't that 2,000 grooming tub look cool ), you discover that you still have quite a bit to purchase. If you're like me, you're on limited funds and you've checked your bank account and decided that although you want to buy the best stuff, you don't want to take out a second mortgage to do it. So where do you purchase your supplies Do you go to the local big-box retailer and look for a grooming table Do you look at the local pet boutique for ribbons and bows Do you go pick it up at the local grocery store and ask the store manager which comb works best with your dog's undercoat I ask these questions in jest, because I'm sure you know by now that you're unlikely to get a lot of help from places that don't specialize in grooming equipment. That doesn't mean that these places won't have what you're looking for, but rather that you have to...

Where to Go from Here

1 If you want to know what tools you need to buy for grooming, look in Chapter 3. 1 If you want to know how to do basic grooming on your dog, check out Chapters 5 and 6 for starters. So now you're ready to begin grooming your dog. I know you'll enjoy it as much as I do, and I know you'll find this book a helpful guide.

Handling your dog in the show ring

Now isn't really the time to adjust anything on your dog. Some show people may take a quick brush, but other than that, you pretty much have to leave your dog's coat be. The ring is not a grooming place. One of the fun things about going to a dog show is visiting the vendors. Depending on the show, the vendors' booths may be many or few. You can often see and touch grooming equipment and other items at a dog show and buy things you normally wouldn't get at your pet supply store. Dog shows are great for finding odd and different grooming items, such as special scissors (or shears) or things like snoods devices that keep a dogs' hair from dragging. Because your dog is present at the show, you can often try these items on your dog to see whether they're really going to work. When you look for grooming supplies (like shampoo and conditioner), look for them in bulk, and look for items you can't just order from a catalog. Sometimes a dealer has an item on hand that you can otherwise order...

Adding optional equipment and supplies

I Bathing noose This device usually affixes to the side of a tub with a suction cup. It fits around the dog's neck and holds him in one place while you bathe him. Cost runs 10 to 20. Warning Even though a strong dog usually can pull free from this device, never leave a dog unattended in a grooming noose. 1 Grooming apron Like any other apron, this one keeps hair and grooming stuff off your clothing. Cost ranges from 10 to 30. 1 Grooming harness for the grooming arm (described in the For brushing and bathing section earlier in this chapter) This contraption keeps the dog standing while you groom. Cost is 10 to 25. Warning Never leave a dog unattended in a grooming harness 1 Professional grooming tub This option is an expensive one, but if you can manage it, it's a wonderful way to bathe your dog without hurting your back. Cost is 200 to 2,000. 1 Ramp or step stairs Stairs or a ramp is a good device for getting your dog either into out of the tub or onto the grooming table without...

Familiarizing Yourself with Your Dogs Coat

It's truly hard to believe that the wolf produced descendants with such wide varieties of coats, but it did, and that means you're going to have to evaluate the type of coat your dog has and what that means in terms of the grooming equipment and supplies you're going to need. In the sections that follow, I fill you in about the differences in the basic types of coats.

Giving Your Dog a Great Do Clipping Basics

You can discover the basics of using them and what you can do with all those strange blades and plastic snap-on thingies in this chapter. You can also discover how to safely handle scissors (also called shears in the grooming world), and I even explain how to give your dog a basic clip. After you gain a good grasp of the basics in this chapter, you can check out Part III, where I tell you about the specifics of grooming the different types of dog coats.

From bigbox retailers

Big-box retailers usually have a pet section where you can purchase grooming equipment. They frequently have tools and supplies at a pretty deep discount because they buy in bulk and pass those savings along to consumers. You'll probably find a fair number of name-brand pet supplies and maybe some small distributor items too, but for the most part, you're not going to find much in the line of specialty equipment so you may not find everything that you're looking for.

Gathering the tools you need

Before you get started, gather all the tools you need for the ear-cleaning session. (For more about grooming tools, see Chapter 3.) Doing so makes the ear-cleaning session go more smoothly. Having all your implements in one place makes all the difference between a pleasant experience and one that isn't so pleasant.

Chapter Inside and Out What Affects a Dogs Coat

And Setting Aside a Grooming Dog washes Options for grooming when you have no space 61 Chapter 4 Training Your Dog for Grooming 63 Refining Your Dog's Grooming Showing your dog how to enjoy grooming procedures 65 Helping your dog onto the grooming Establishing a Grooming Part JJJ Grooming by Coat Type Beyond the Basics 131 Chapter 8 Spiffing Up Short- and Medium-Coated Breeds 133 Part IV Grooming

Assembling a firstaid kit

One preventative measure that helps during emergencies is having a well-stocked first-aid kit. You need to assemble this first-aid kit for your dog and have it available in your grooming room in case a real problem crops up. Having a first-aid kit can't prevent an emergency, but you'll be better prepared for dealing with one.

Wheres the flea and tick stuff

You may notice what appears to be a distinct oversight on my part when it comes to mentioning flea-and-tick items. The reason is a good one. Up until ten or so years ago, fleas and ticks usually were handled with grooming products like flea dips and sprays for the animal, flea bombs (or other such nasty devices) for the home, and insecticides for your yard and lawn.

Exploring the Importance of Nutrition

Different opinions and myths about the proper way to feed a dog abound. Many dog owners hold fast to feeding methods regardless of their validity, so I sift the fact from fiction in this section to give you some good guidelines on how feeding your dog the right diet can perk up his appearance and make grooming him easier.

RubADub Dub Washing Your

One of the old wives' tales about grooming dogs is that you shouldn't bathe your dog unless he's really dirty or stinky. The story goes that if you do, you'll remove essential oils and dry out his coat. As is true of the nooses used on grooming tables, you should never leave a dog restrained by a tub noose alone. No, I'm not recommending that you use a toilet bowl cleaner to wash your dog, but before you think about wetting down and lathering up your pooch, remember that you need to thoroughly brush and comb your dog's coat. If you don't brush dogs out before you bathe them, most dogs end up with nasty tangles and mats from those scrubbing bubbles. The same is true for a dog who's shedding heavily. Although warm water loosens the hair, clumps of shedded hair tend to mat and make for a grooming nightmare. While your dog's wet but before you apply shampoo is as great a time as any to express your dog's anal sacs, if you were planning to do it as part of your grooming routine (see...

Stocking up on important routine supplies

I Shampoo for dogs This shampoo needs to be pH-balanced for dogs (shampooing your dog often with human shampoo can harm her coat and skin). Ask your vet to recommend a shampoo appropriate for your dog's coat, or look for a professional-grade grooming shampoo, which almost always works better than the grocery store varieties. You can get them in several varieties scented (in all sorts of wonderful smells), hypoallergenic, antifungal, specifically for white or black coats, tearless (a great option for beginning groomers), waterless (for cleaning up your dog in between baths), and so on. Unless you have a specific problem that you're trying to address (ringworm, hot spots, and allergies), you're better off staying with a good dog shampoo that cleans the coat but isn't medicated. You can pick one that smells really nice, too. Cost is 10 to 60 per gallon. i Plastic storage containers Tupperware, Glad, or Ziploc are good ones. They work for everyday use in grooming. You need them to hold...

Coat types Single versus double

Both types of coats, however, have different issues when it comes to grooming, so be aware that one type isn't necessarily better than another. Knowing the type of coat your dog has helps you determine how to groom him properly. Knowing whether your dog is going to go through a seasonal shed, or blow his coat, is also important no sense in being surprised when your dog leaves enough hair on the rug to knit three more dogs his size I Stand-off coat A long coat that does not lay flat against the body but stands straight up. (Also the kind of coat your dog will have if the two of you can't come to terms about grooming.)

Check your dogs coat for any oily residues repeat Steps through lathering and rinsing your dog as necessary until the

Throughout Dog Grooming For Dummies, I repeatedly warn you about not using scissors on your dog's fur coat, and you may be wondering why. Many well-meaning pet owners accidentally cut their dog's skin while trying to get a foreign substance out of the coat, and they then have to rush the pooch to the emergency room for sutures. Even I've had an accident with scissors, which proves that even the pros screw up. No matter how careful and well-meaning you are, if your dog is struggling or you get in a hurry (or even if you don't), you can really botch a good grooming session with one accident.

Starting Out Small and Building Up

Rome wasn't built in a day, or so the saying goes. Most dogs (and owners) are resistant to grooming, because it takes so darn long. Instead of putting you and your dog through a marathon grooming session, try starting out small. Maybe your dog hates having his toenails trimmed. Try this Trim toenails on only one paw today and maybe brush your dog a bit, and then tomorrow, do the next paw and brush him a bit more. As your dog becomes more tolerant of grooming, you can try doing two paws or adding more brushing. Otherwise, the longer you take, the more nervous your dog will become and the worse the struggle.

Sarcoptic mange scabies

A particularly nasty form of mange, sarcoptic mange is caused by the Sarcoptes scabiei canis, an itchy mite that can make your dog miserable. Sarcoptic mange is highly contagious and can transfer from dog to dog or even through contact with contaminated grooming equipment. These mites love the ears, face, elbows, hocks, and belly. What's more, this mange is contagious to humans, too.

Organizing Your Accoutrements

After you have your grooming area planned out and your equipment and supplies gathered, it's time to organize and put everything together. You want to organize and assemble your equipment according to the tasks you'll be performing. For example, you want to have all your bathing supplies in one area so that you have everything you need in one spot when bathing your dog. Organize your supplies as follows, using a separate plastic container for each supplies category

Anatomy of the Dog The Hipbones Connected to the

Dog Hind Legs Anatomy

Through the years, the dog world has come up with names to describe the parts of the dog. Knowing what part of the dog you're working on is extremely important in grooming. After all, if you don't know what those pointy joints that jut out at the back of the rear legs are called, you won't know what I'm talking about when I (or other groomers) say hock.

Dealing with Difficult Dogs

Dogs inherit most of their behavior from a common ancestor, the wolf. Yes, even a dog such as a Poodle, who looks nothing like a wolf, has inherited the basic instincts from that ancestor. Looking at your dog's behavior from that perspective, you quickly understand why grooming with brushes, combs, and clippy things can be so distressing. In even the most docile Cocker Spaniel beats the heart of the wolf. In some cases, something you do accidentally can cause a dog pain. When the pain is beyond the dog's threshold, she's going to snap, and that may injure you. For that reason, exercising care and using a muzzle are the best courses of action whenever you're doing any grooming procedure that may hurt your dog. Deciding whether to muzzle or medicate a dog depends on you and the dog. Say, for example, that you have a difficult dog and perhaps he's fearful of the entire grooming process (bad experiences) or just struggles a lot. You've tried training the dog, but your valiant efforts have...

Getting Down to Business

Opening a dog-grooming business, regardless of whether it's in your home or in a shop at one of the local strip malls, means that you must take care of some legal matters, such as choosing just how you want to operate your business. The second way you can operate your grooming business is as a corporation. Various types of corporations exist, but for the moment, I'll discuss the S Corporation. Many small businesses are S Corporations, because operating as one provides good protection, and the business entity can be sold, if need be. proprietorship in some ways and like a corporation in others. However, because not all states recognize LLCs and not all LLCs are the same, be sure to talk to someone who's experienced at setting one up before you decide to take this route with your grooming business. For example, your business plan needs to specify what type of grooming business you want to open. It needs to say whether you're operating 1 A home-based business where you groom out of your...

Mousse and a spritz Conditioning the coat

Coat conditioners won't make a bad coat perfect, but they will improve it tremendously, especially when you do all the other good-grooming tasks correctly. Coat conditioners won't necessarily make your dog into a show winner, but they will keep you from losing badly because your dog's coat looks awful.

Add Beautiful Shine to Your Dogs Coat

Is your dog's coat dull and drab If you have a dog with a short coat, you can perk it up with an oil-based coat conditioner. Sometimes lanolin or mink oil works well. Spread a small amount in your palms and rub them together before rubbing your hands all over your dog's coat. Then, finish up with a hound glove, which is a grooming mitt for short-coated dogs (see Chapter 3).

Controlling the Situation at All Times

Prior planning prevents poor performance. In the case of grooming, that means you need to be in control of your dog at all times during the grooming session. You don't want to chase your dog all around the house while trying to brush him or give him a bath. That means crating your dog when you're unable to watch him and keeping him still with aids like a tub noose when you're washing him or a head noose when you're grooming him on the grooming table. Check out Chapter 4 for more information about showing your dog how to accept grooming.

Satisfying Your First Customers

Give clients who help you sign someone else up a discount. Take a certain percentage off their dog's next grooming session. 1 Keep grooming areas clean. n this part, I debunk ten myths about grooming dogs, share ten time-saving grooming tips, and provide expert advice for making grooming a pleasant experience for you and your pup. Enjoy

From bigbox pet supply stores

If I'm going to talk about big-box discount department stores, I may as well talk about the big-box versions of pet supply stores like PETCO and PetSmart. These supply stores cater to guess who You Well, they cater to the pet owner. These stores offer you aisle upon aisle of pet stuff, including doggie grooming equipment and supplies. Why, you'll feel like you've gone to doggie nirvana. The neat part of going to these stores is that you usually have more than one brand and more than one choice when it comes to the things you need to buy. You'll find plenty of doggie shampoos, conditioners, spritzes, sprays, deodorants, combs, brushes, and myriad assortment of other grooming products. You'll probably find a grooming table and maybe a doggie blow-dryer, but you may not have quite the choice you have when you look in catalogs or on the Internet.

Spiffing Up Short and Medium Coated Breeds

Exploring the characteristics of medium-coated breeds Grooming short- and medium-coated dogs Getting a wash-and-wear dog ready to show ogs with short or medium coats are the wash-and-wear dogs of the canine world. They're the least grooming intensive, needing almost no clipping and minimal brushing when compared to long-coated breeds (see Chapter 13). Now, I said these dogs have shorter coats, but I never said they were low shedding or low maintenance. When pondering a short coat, you may think your troubles are over when it comes to shedding. After all, less fur on the dog means less hair on your pants and couch, right Wrong. If you've ever owned a short-coated dog for any length of time, you know that hair is simply another condiment and that these dogs can shed profusely. Only hairless dogs won't shed nevertheless, they do lose hair in some ways. If you're looking for a low-shedding dog, try a Poodle, Kerry Blue Terrier, Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier, or any one of the single-coated...

Brushing and Combing Basics

Brushing and combing form the foundation of good grooming. Most dogs don't actually need baths all that frequently. They usually need them only when they get noticeably dirty or have to go to a show. However, they must be brushed and combed often usually twice weekly or more often, depending on the breed and coat (check out Part III of this book for specifics). Brushing and combing are great for your dog's skin and coat, because they distribute oils from the skin throughout the coat and get rid of bits of dirt, tangles, and loose hair. This aspect of grooming is the one thing you really need to do, even if you don't do anything else and decide to hire a groomer. 1 Start young. When your dog is a puppy, get her used to the procedure. In many cases, dogs love the attention, and you'll enjoy working on her. However, even if you do start early, some dogs never quite take to grooming entirely. In many instances, you may have to work through some bad behaviors, and in other rare cases, you...

Getting Your Dog to Help You Reach the Right Places

Grooming goes much more easily when your dog is willing to help you. Your dog doesn't necessarily have to compete in dog shows or attend obedience-training classes to know a few key cues that can make your job of grooming him that much easier. i Get onto and off of the grooming table i Sit on command i Lie down on one side or the other Showing your dog how to do these things takes a certain amount of patience on your part and his. After he catches on, grooming will go much more quickly. Helping your dog onto the grooming table Getting your dog up on the grooming table is an important part of grooming. After all, you can't use the grooming table to groom your dog if you can't get your dog on it. If you have a small- to medium-sized dog, picking her up and putting her on the grooming table isn't such a big chore. But if you have a large- or super-sized pooch, you're likely to schedule visits to your chiropractor after grooming sessions if you use that approach. Although most dogs love...

Contents at a Glance

Chapter 1 What Good Grooming Is All Chapter 2 Inside and Out What Affects a Dog's Coat and Grooming 25 Chapter 4 Training Your Dog for Part JJJ Grooming by Coat Type Beyond the Basics 131 Part JV Grooming Chapter 17 Grooming Emergencies Knowing Doggie First Aid 261 Chapter 18 It's Showtime Grooming a Dog for the Chapter 19 Going Pro Starting a Dog Grooming Chapter 20 Ten Popular Myths About Grooming Chapter 21 Ten Timesaving Grooming Chapter 22 Ten Best Ways to Make Grooming a Pleasant Experience 325 Appendix Grooming

Foolish Assumptions

1 You want to groom your dog at home to save the expense of professional grooming, but you don't have much time to wade through pages of grooming texts to figure out how to get your dog looking his best. 1 You may have a dog that has a coat that requires a little more time-consuming grooming and care than you expected, and you want some time- and hassle-saving tips to keep your dog's coat in great shape. i Maybe you know quite a bit about dog grooming, and you're considering grooming for show or professionally.

The cost in time

Although the old adage that time is money is true where dog grooming is concerned, you nevertheless need to think about the work and the fun you can have when you bathe or brush your dog. As you know, grooming your dog is as much a necessity as housetraining your dog or taking him to the vet for an annual exam. 1 The shorter the natural coat of the dog, the less grooming he's going to need. i The smaller the dog, the less grooming he's going to need. 1 The condition of your dog's coat dictates the amount of time grooming takes. Brushing out a clean dog with a well-maintained coat takes very little time when compared to one with a dirty and matted coat. 1 Dogs with wash-and-wear coats can usually get away with once-a-week grooming. 1 Dogs with average coats can usually get away with twice-a-week grooming. When planning your initial grooming session, you need to set aside at least two hours, because you'll be going more slowly and your dog's coat may not be in the best condition. Later,...

The great outdoors

If you don't have enough space to do your grooming in the house, you can try setting up a grooming area outside. After all, you can give your dog a bath with a hose and then pop him up on the table for a brushing, right Well, maybe. First of all, grooming a dog outdoors isn't an ideal situation. For one thing, you can't control the temperature or weather. Grooming your dog during an electrical storm would be quite sporting to say the least, don't you think So you can't control the temperature, the wind, the rain, or the snow, thus making outdoor grooming downright uncomfortable in most circumstances. What's more, windy conditions probably will get dust and dirt in your dog's clean hair. Lastly, the outdoors means many distractions for virtually any canine. Certain noises and activities can startle or frighten your dog, and squirrels, kids playing, other dogs, and other similar distractions can turn an otherwise routine grooming session into a disaster. Dog washes Options for grooming...

Breeds

Grooming and grooming your double-coated dog Sprucing up your long hair's coat for show t's time to talk big hair. If the short-coated breeds are the wash-and-wear dogs of the canine world (see Chapter 8), the double-coated breeds probably are the biggest headaches as far as the grooming world is concerned. It isn't so much that double-coated dogs are extremely grooming intensive, except (of course) when they blow their coats, or shed, but rather it's what happens to their coats when you don't care for them mats

The cost in money

Most people think and talk about costs in terms of money. You know How much in dollars is this or that going to cost Well, the bad news is that getting stocked up with grooming equipment and supplies is fairly expensive (see Chapter 3 for more about the costs of supplies). The good news is that after you dole out the initial investment for your equipment, you probably won't encounter that expense again unless something breaks or wears out, and by comparison, the cost of buying your own supplies is relatively cheap. How much does at-home grooming cost compared to a year's worth of grooming sessions from a pro Well, if you're paying from 20 to 50 a month in grooming, you're paying 240 to 600 a year. You can buy some pretty nice grooming equipment for that amount of money, and doing it yourself pays off during the first year or two. Some dogs need more grooming equipment and supplies than others. For example, a dog who needs daily brushing and regular clipping is going to need more...

Considering the cost

Keep these points in mind when considering the cost of grooming 1 Most groomers charge between 35 and 70 for complete grooming. 1 Groomers add from 8 to 12 for mats and add at least 40 for show cuts over the average cost of grooming. Most but not all groomers offer baths, brushing, clipping, stripping, ear cleaning, and nail cutting as part of their services. Ask what the full grooming price includes. Some groomers won't quote a price until they see your dog and can gauge how much work grooming your dog will be.

The bathroom

The location of the bathroom in relation to the grooming area is important. Having your grooming bathroom near the grooming area is helpful, because you won't have to shuffle a wet dog through so much of the house. Just be sure that the bathroom is kept free of drafts in the winter and has proper air circulation through the summer.

About This Book

Many books about grooming dogs are on the shelves of libraries and bookstores, so you may be wondering what makes this one different than the others. Well, first of all, you don't have to be a grooming expert (or an expert with dogs) to read and understand this book. I explain everything in easy-to-understand language that someone who's never groomed a dog can understand. Although I talk about aspects of dog grooming that you may never use with a pet dog preparing for a dog show is one I have plenty of information about how to groom the everyday pet. Who knows The next dog you get may be a purebred you'll want to show. I go into different coat types and what you need to do with them, even if your dog is a mixed breed, all so you can figure out which section applies to your dog and get useful information. You'll love being able to go to the section that's most appropriate to you and your dog. Whether it's simple weekly grooming, choosing a professional groomer, clipping a dog, or...

Haircoat

Although you can lump your dog's fur in with genetics, I talk about haircoat separately. The haircoat (or fur or whatever you'd like to call your dog's skin and hair) greatly influences the appearance and grooming of your dog. How your dog arrives at your grooming table is partly genetics, but more importantly, it's also

Coat length

1 Long coats Dogs with long coats often are the show stoppers of the dog world. Long and beautiful, they attract oohs and ahhs wherever they go. But all that beauty has a price. Long-coated dogs often are single coated and prone to mats and tangles if their hair isn't kept up. If your dog has a long coat, you can expect long grooming sessions or trips to the grooming parlor (see Chapter 13). Afghan Hounds and Irish Setters have long coats.

Health

Your dog's health greatly influences his appearance. Like humans, dogs never look their best when they're sick. In fact, your dog's coat can look downright awful when he isn't feeling well. No amount of grooming is going to make a sick dog look good, so you need to pay attention to his health.

Online

Like catalogs, the Internet is quickly becoming a favorite place for pet owners (me included) to shop for pet supplies and equipment. So much so that catalog-based groomer and supply houses, mega-pet supply stores, and even trendy pet boutiques now offer products for sale online. Being online makes buying your grooming supplies easy, even at 2 a.m. when no bricks-and-mortar stores are open. You can also use online resources to make a list of what you need to pick up either directly from the (nearby) store or by calling in a phone order.

Training

You may have heard that you need to be certified to groom dogs professionally. Actually, you don't have to be certified to be a groomer or open a grooming business, but certification looks good to savvy customers and ensures that you're up-to-date with the latest techniques. But to be able to consider yourself a professional groomer, regardless of whether you're certified, you need to hone your skills through training that you can get nearly anywhere. You can be self-taught, learning grooming skills by working on your own, your friends' and other people's dogs you can be hired on with another groomer who's interested in getting some help in exchange for teaching you how to groom or you can attend a formal grooming school or take correspondence courses. The sections that follow weigh the pros and cons of each training option. If you're serious about diving headlong into becoming a professional groomer, you can take grooming classes at a grooming school. Grooming schools provide major...

Tumors and Cysts

If the tumor is benign (and many of them are), you then have a choice whether to have the tumor removed. If you decide not to have it removed, you must remember to be careful when grooming around it. Tumors tend to bleed profusely when nicked with a comb or clipper, and if they continue to grow, you may want to have it removed for aesthetic reasons or for the comfort of your dog.

The bald breeds

Make no mistake, hairless breeds have their own set of grooming requirements. These dogs are characterized by having little or no hair at all (see Figure 8-1), but an occasional powder puff coat shows up in their litters. Powder puffs are bald-breed dogs that actually have hair. The bald breeds include the

Unclogging Anal Sacs

Has your dog suddenly taken to using your nice, new Berber carpet as a roll of toilet paper If so, you may be in for a real treat. You may have the distinct pleasure of helping your dog remove the fluid from his anal sacs (and you thought dog grooming wouldn't be any fun ).

Strangulation

If your dog is somehow strangled, remove grooming or bathing nooses or whatever is constricting your dog's breathing (such as collars or harnesses). If your dog is unconscious, follow the steps under the Performing mouth-to-mouth resuscitation section earlier in this chapter. Get your dog to a veterinarian as soon as possible even if she is conscious.

Web Sites

Grooming your own dog If you're looking for information about grooming your own dog or finding someone to do it for you, be sure to check these two Web sites Petgroomer.com (www.petgroomer.com) Petgroomer.com is a great Internet resource guide for folks whose focus mainly is on grooming their own dogs. Grooming for yourself and others Even if you're only grooming your own dog, you can find some really cool pointers from Web sites aimed at professional groomers. Nevertheless, the sites in the list that follows focus on providing groomers who already are working professionally or the ones who are looking to turn pro

Exercise

Exercise doesn't mean going to the doggie gym it simply means keeping your dog (and you for that matter) fit and trim by having a little fun doing the activities that you and your dog already enjoy, such as walking, hiking, playing fetch, swimming, or playing some dog sports. Exercise is important to your dog's overall health and appearance (and that's what you're trying to improve when you groom, isn't it ). A dog that looks lousy because he's fat and flabby isn't going to look nice when you're grooming him.

Setting Up Shop

Where you plan to operate your grooming business is the most important decision you need to make as you set up shop. You have a few choices, including in your home, as a standalone shop, or in conjunction with another business 1 A mutual arrangement Having a standalone business can be costly, so if you don't have the investment capital to open your own business or rent a shop, try asking a veterinarian, a pet-supply store, or other pet-oriented business whether you can rent space from them to do grooming. Such an arrangement can be mutually beneficial to both parties. You benefit by having a place to do your work and from customers you gain through the regular patronage of the business, and the business benefits from the rent you pay and from being able to provide yet another added service to its customers. 1 Contract grooming Another possibility is freelance work in someone else's grooming shop. Instead of being a direct employee of the groomer, you work on a contractual basis,...

Gearing Up

If you read Chapter 2, you know how important grooming is for your dog's health, but now you're probably wondering where to begin. After all, you may have a brush or comb or maybe some shampoo that you bought at the local grocery or pet supply store, but is that what you need to make your dog pretty Will the stuff you already have work in a pinch when you have virtually nothing besides a slicker brush and a garden hose And will the basket of dog things that Uncle Ed gave to you after Missy the Coonhound died at 15 work for you and your dog The first thing you need to do is take an inventory of all the equipment you already have. That includes the grocery-store nail cutters, the combs, the slicker brushes, the soft brushes, and whatever the heck that thing is that you suspect has something to do with grooming but have no clue what it is. With all due respect to Uncle Ed and Missy, unless your uncle is a vet or into showing or grooming dogs, he probably purchased the comb at a big-box...

Rear and tail

I Rump (or croup) This part of the dog is the proverbial rear end it's where the pelvis bone is. You need to use care in grooming this section because it's tender. Fluffy hairs often found behind the rump under the tail tend to attract plenty of knots, tangles, and other nasties.

Coat textures

In the same way there are different types of coats, different coats have different textures. Understanding the texture of your dog's coat is crucial for proper grooming. The following list describes different coat textures 1 Smooth coats The smooth-coated or short-coated dog has very short hair that lays back against the dog's skin. A smooth coat can be either double-coated or single-coated, depending on the breed. These coats tend not to be much of a hassle when it comes to grooming even though they do shed. Dalmatians and Bulldogs have his kind of hair. 1 Wire coats The wire coat (broken coat) is a type of coat that is wiry on the outside and often has a soft undercoat on the inside, but it can be a single coat. Wire coats are wavy looking, but when you pet them, the hair feels a bit coarse. Think Terrier when you think about wiry coats. These coats usually need to be stripped or clipped, which adds an extra step to the average grooming routine (see Chapters 11 and 12).

Choosing Tools for the Well Groomed Dachshund

If you have a smooth Dachshund, you don't need much in the way of grooming tools. Longhairs and wirehairs require a little more especially if you decide to do all the dog grooming yourself (see Chapter 3 for more on coat type). You can talk to your vet or a local groomer for tips on which grooming tools are best for your dog for now, this section provides a short list of tools for you. (For more info on how to groom your Dachshund, see Chapter 16.)

Chapter Wellgroomed is well cared for

Another important factor that contributes a lot to your dog's health is good grooming. Don't be fooled into thinking grooming is just a matter of brushing his hair. Grooming your dog accomplishes much more than just making your pet's coat look nice and shiny. Grooming also helps you bond with your puppy. It helps you spend time with him. Combing, brushing, and bathing are all activities he should get used to and gradually he will associate these functions with the pleasant times both of you had. You will be able to check your dog closely for any problems while grooming. Move the hair aside and examine the skin closely for signs of flea, ticks or skin irritations. Look for any unusual problems with the coat such as mats, tangles or dandruff. Mats and tangles can be carefully removed while grooming. Learn where he likes to be combed and brushed and where he doesn't. All dogs have sensitive areas that need to be groomed a little more gently and carefully than others. By paying special...

Frequently Asked Questions Can I Groom a Pack Together

My answer to this often-asked question is no. In my experience, it is far better to groom members of a pack of dogs separately. This is partly sentimental in a way to me, grooming is an enjoyable and intimate part of an This can happen in two ways, firstly by grooming and thereby seeming to favor one dog ahead of another. But it can also happen if you raise dogs onto tables for grooming. One only has to look at dogs that jump up to understand the importance of height within the canine mindset. Dogs that jump are, of course, trying to gain equal status with their owner. So it follows that, if a pack is brought into a room to be groomed together, the sight of one dog being raised above the rest transmits a potentially explosive message. It is signaling that this dog is being elevated in status. As a result, when the dog is lowered back to ground level it is almost certain to be challenged by canine peers who are suddenly uncertain of its place within their pack. In my view the best, and...

Will my Lab let me brush him

The best way to get your Lab comfortable being brushed is to start grooming sessions while he's just a puppy. Work slowly and make brushing fun and enjoyable. Because he'll probably get bored (and restless) quickly, begin with several short periods rather than a single long one. Use a soft brush. Talk to him while you work and praise him when he sits still. While you're at it, get him used to other grooming chores Wipe his eyes and ears, handle his paws, and give him a quick skin check. If he tries to resist, stop and reassure him, then go back to the task. Be sure to praise him when he lets you continue. If you work with him like this every day, he'll soon let you do all of your grooming tasks without protesting or fidgeting.