Proper dog care involves many responsibilities ranging from everyday walks to trips to the vet, but don't forget about grooming! Grooming your dog much more than simply making your pet look good. It's also about helping to maintain his or her cleanliness and physical health. A clean dog is generally a happier and healthier dog overall.
Grooming your dog can be a little intimidating at first glance. There are so many different factors to consider such as what types of clippers to use, are you using the right kind of brush, and does your breed of dog have any specific issues to be aware of such as ear cleaning with Cocker Spaniels.
Here are ten factors to consider when buying a dog grooming kit:
- What's your desired outcome? The most important consideration to take into account is the dog grooming purpose. Will you be showing your dog in competition or simply caring for them as a pet? For show dogs, a wider variety of items will be necessary to obtain a show-quality appearance.
- Educate yourself. Discuss grooming with the breeder you purchased your dog from; you can also consult your veterinarian. Keep in mind that certain dog breeds require special grooming and may need specific techniques done to achieve the desired look.
- Stick to the essentials. Don’t bother making purchases on items that you won’t need. Some of these items, such as grooming tables, can be quite expensive, and essentially unnecessary if you don’t have intentions to show your dog.
- Equip yourself with the proper tools. Purchase a dog grooming comb with fine and coarse teeth, as well as dog nail clippers. Consider an electric nail clipper, which is often easier to use than a manual one. Clotting agents should also be kept on hand in case the nails are clipped too closely and bleed. Dog shampoo should also be carefully selected.
- It’s more than just hair and nails. Don't overlook the importance of dental care. It not only eliminates doggy breath but it's also important to the health and well-being of the dog. Keep in mind that you will need a toothbrush and toothpaste; a fingertip dog toothbrush will offer you more ease and control. Remember to never use human toothpaste on dogs.
- All coats are different, and so are the brushes. Realize that you may need several types of brushes to care for your dog's coat. A non-shedding dog will need a different type of brush than a dog with a long-coat. Silky-coated dogs can matte quickly if left unchecked.
- Do you make the cut? Buy a clipper and blades, along with dog clipper coolant to cool the blades. This is only necessary if you will be cutting your dog's fur yourself. If you have no experience doing this, let a professional groomer do the job.
- Be prepared for breed specific needs. Some dog breeds require additional work. This can include ear cleaning and treating eye stains among other. You may need dog liquid ear cleaner and pet cotton swabs.
- Keep your cool. Use a special dog-fur dryer if you will blowing your dog's fur dry; regular hair dryers channel heat differently and can burn a dog.
- Organization! Keep all your equipment together and keep it organized. Purchase a large storage box, preferably one with handles, to house all of your grooming supplies.