Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Common Places For Mats On Your Dog.

Where do you find the most mats on your dog? Do you know how to get rid of those mats?

If you have a full coated dog, the mats can be found anywhere. Here are the most common spots our groomers find them.

*Behind the ears
*Around the neck (where the collar rubs)
*Between the pads of the feet
*Around the dogs rear end

Do you know how to keep these mats from forming? Brushing, Brushing and more brushing. When I say brushing, I don't mean the normal brushing from head to tail to feet. Most times that is only getting the top coat of hair. If you want to keep those mats from forming, I suggest you go out and get a slicker brush. (photo below)

When using this brush you can brush from head to tail.  But, it works so much better to go backwards. Brush your dog from foot up. Then from tail to head. This helps get to places that you won't get to, brushing the normal way.
I have always had short haired dogs, until I got my Teacup, Yorkie. This was the first thing I was taught. I know that you are probably busy like me. Doing this every other night will help your groomer out more than you know. It will also help you to keep your dog in full coat.
Just remember brushing backwards is the key.
This can also be done on short haired dogs too. It helps with their shedding.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Too Shave Your Dog Or Not Too Shave Your Dog, That Is The Question!

In grooming school we are taught not to shave a dog, even a double coated one. Why, you ask? They say that the double coat insulates them from cold and heat. I think we have humanized our dogs so much that we forget why a certain dog has the type of coat they do. On the other hand, I think there are a lot of different reasons for shaving a dog. I guess I am on the fence. Let's talk reasons for shaving. Feel free to comment at anytime.

When reading these reasons, please keep in mind we do live in the desert, where it gets to 115 degrees.

*My dog sheds constantly - Yes, we get this a lot. Normally we would offer the DeShed Package to help get the undercoat out. But, that requires up keep. Right now a lot of people cant afford to bring their dogs every 4-6 weeks. We do shave several Labs and Rotties.

*I'm allergic to dog hair. - It probably isn't the hair a person is allergic too, but the dander. This is another reason for wanting the dog shaved.

*My dog is in bad health, I just want my dog to be comfortable. - This one is usually for elderly dogs. The ritual of grooming is sometimes hard on our older pets. It's let painful to give them a short haircut.

*It's getting too hot for my dog. - Normally, starting in May, when the temperature rises we get a lot of dogs, every breed that gets a shave down.

I guess the best that we can do, is to educate our clients one why their dogs coat is important no matter what the season. We are also in a service where the customer is "always right". If they want a shave down we will do it. But, only after educating them. Do I really know if a Chow, who lives outside will over heat during the summer, because of the double coat? No, I don't. As groomer's this is where our training comes into play.  Somebody once told me to put on a fur coat and stand outside in the hottest part  the day and see how it felt. She just knew that feeling is what the dogs felt too.

I have a photo to share with your. This is Cody. He was diabetic. His owner wanted to shave him down to make him comfortable and easier to give his insulin shots. We did our best to educate her. She still wanted him shaved. So, we did it. His beautiful, Husky coat, never grew back. This is what he spent a majority of his life looking like. Was it worth it? To his owner it was. He was loved by everyone just the same.

This is a big reason why we try to educate before we shave a double coated dog. As I said we will do what the owner asks. It's not always easy.

What do you think? Too Shave or Not too?