When was the last time you bathed? Brushed your teeth? (Speaking for the others of humanity, I am hoping it was in the last twelve hours.) How about your pet? In the event that you can’t remember the last time your pet got a bath or cat got a brushing, in that case your pet is overdue. Whether you do it yourself or take your dog to a specialist, here’s how regular pet grooming keeps your best friend healthy, from top to tail.
Great things about Grooming
A fresh-smelling pet is nice, but it’s not the one reason to bathe and brush regularly. Pets can grab a myriad of pollutants while outside – pollen, dust, fleas, and ticks can all hitch a ride on your dog and end up in your own home. They can also cause allergies in a few pets, leading to severe itching and hair loss. If your dog is hypersensitive (which is not uncommon), a simple flea bite or some pollen can result in skin dermatitis and other secondary skin infections. Pets who are not regularly brushed can also develop knots in their fur, triggering painful pinching with their skin. They could try to pull the knots out with their teeth, which may damage delicate tissue and leave bald spots or sores. Contact here
Prevention: Bathe your dog regularly with a mild shampoo specially formulated for cats or dogs. Use lukewarm (not hot) water and gently work the shampoo to their coat with the hands or a soft cloth. Be extra careful around their eyes, and don’t forget to scrub their undercarriage, the tops of the paws, and their tail. Rinse thoroughly with lukewarm water, and dry them off with a soft towel.
Dogs, specifically, may benefit from the drying process. If they do, invest some time and make this a good reward to them having endured the indignity of the bath. Be sure to dry the insides of your pet’s ears, too, as a moist ear is an infection’s best friend.
When you have a pet with longer hair, or if their hair tends to be unruly, you can review them with a brush while they’re still damp. Once they’re completely dry, provide them with a good brushing to eliminate stray hairs. Depending on the breed of your pet and the distance of its hair, follow-up with brushing daily or weekly to avoid knots and keep their shedding in balance.
This would be a good time to use a monthly flea prevention treatment as well. Calendar the date which means you stick to schedule with it on a monthly basis.
A warm, inviting environment for blight, ears can harbor all varieties of pestilence – sometimes several at the same time. Mites, fungus, and bacteria all thrive in an unclean ear and left untreated can result in long lasting damage and hearing loss.
Prevention: Check and clean ears weekly with a cotton ball or tissue and a solution specifically formulated for the work. Usually do not use anything smaller than your finger to clean your pet’s ears (no Q-Tips!) , nor extend in to the ear canal.
If you visit a substance that looks like coffee grounds, brown discharge, pus, and/or the ears smell foul, your pet comes with an infection and needs to go directly to the vet. Depending on the organism, your pet may require oral and a topical medication, so don’t wait or try to cure this at home.
Like humans, cats and dogs require regular professional teeth cleaning, usually one per year. If neglected, dirty teeth can build tartar, gingivitis, and periodontal disease resulting in abscesses, tooth loss and damage to other organs in the body.
Prevention: Among yearly dental visits, brush your pet’s teeth daily at home. All you need is the proper-sized toothbrush, toothpaste specially formulated for dogs or cats (do not use human toothpaste as it could contain chemicals toxic to pets) and just a little patience.
Overgrown nails can hurt and hinder your pet’s ability to walk. They are able to also snag or catch on fabric, break off at the quick triggering bleeding and pain, grow into the pads of the paw leading to infection, and donate to the introduction of arthritis.
Prevention: Maintain your pet’s nails trimmed to the correct length. Most pets aren’t thinking about the nail-cutting process, so if you’re going to get this done yourself, approach your dog after a long walk or a vigorous play session when they’re tired and relaxed.
Your dog has two anal glands (or sacs) located on either side of its anus. These glands secrete fluid which functions generally to mark territory and identify your dog to other pets. When working properly, the glands go to town during defecation or territorial marking. You should definitely working properly, the anal glands fill, causing irritation. If this happens, you will observe your pet scoot, drag, or bite and scratch at the region. Caught with time, full glands can be expressed without ill effect. If not, the glands can impact, abscess and rupture.
Prevention: Some pets will need their glands regularly expressed because of their lifetime. Others is only going to need help at times. The luckiest won’t need gland expression at all. Find out which category fits your dog. When you have a “lifer,” calendar a schedule (this may change from weeks to months) and become diligent about maintenance. If you’re not sure when your pet needs expression, make note every time they start scooting and make an effort to preempt another scooting incident with a few weeks’ time.
It’s worth noting that anal expression with a veterinary technician costs less than $30 generally in most areas, but also for the truly brave:
We know a lack of physical touch adversely impacts pets. Cats and dogs who suffer a lack of kind human contact can be fearful, aggressive and also have other behavioral problems. Pets who aren’t regularly groomed can suffer resulting medical issues that affect their mood and behavior as well. For instance, an ingrown nail or an abscessed tooth can make an otherwise friendly pet reclusive or surly.
Prevention: A well-cared-for pet is a happy pet. Regular brushing/touching of your dog will familiarize you with your pet’s body and what’s “normal,” which means you will easier notice abnormalities (cuts, growths, sore limbs) and can get your dog to the vet early as the issue is treatable (and less costly!). Besides maintaining your pet healthy, the physical act of caring for your furry cherished one builds an emotional bond between you as well as your pet. Actually, some veterinarians encourage adopters to bathe their new pet as a bonding experience, effectively “washing away” the pet’s “old” scent, and replacing it with your scent, claiming that pet in your “pack.”
Maintaining your pet clean and healthy doesn’t need to be a chore. Make bath time and brushing an enjoyable ritual by keeping a calm, upbeat energy, praising excessively, and spending more time scrubbing or massaging those areas you know hit your pet’s “spot.” As time passes, your dog could even grow to enjoy this time around spent together. For the less pleasurable tasks upon this list, much dose of patience, praise and treats should help. Or do as I do: allow groomer handle the others.