Let’s be clear, dog grooming is not a luxury but a necessity. It should always be an important consideration when choosing to welcome a new puppy or dog in to your family. It doesn’t have to break the bank however, as long as you find a professional dog groomer who provides the right advice. Allowing your dogs coat to grow a bit more can be tempting, but this will lead to more time spent ensuring your dogs coat is well maintained and knot-free. By booking your dog in regularly for professional grooming, you will not only have a dog that looks and smells great, but it is invaluable for their ongoing health too.
At Gallipots, we’d recommend that you have your dog professionally groomed on a monthly to twelve week basis depending on your dogs breed and coat type. Let’s find out more on why dog grooming is good for your dog.
1. Professional Knowledge
Inexperience leads to mistakes! Without professional knowledge its all too easy to cause scratches, cuts, and skin irritations by choosing the wrong equipment, having poor scissor skills and using cheap or incorrect shampoos. Its worth remembering that no one is more knowledgeable and skilled in making your dog look great without causing injuries than a qualified dog groomer.
By choosing a dog groomer with professional experience you’ll be safe in the knowledge that they’ll be best placed to spot any lumps and bumps such as warts, cysts or unbroken abscesses from wounds on your pet’s skin. Furthermore, more common ear/skin problems and infections will be obvious to the trained eye or nose. In turn, advice your dog groomer can give will put you in the best possible position to treat any health issues your dog might be suffering from at the earliest stage. This way, it won’t lead to a more serious health issue for your dog.
If, for instance, your pet has a skin condition, a groomer can apply the most suitable products to treat and protect your dogs skin. (see our range of natural supplements and products to maintain your dogs skin health)
2. Nail Trimming
Allowing your dogs nails to grow too long can lead to more serious problems. One such problem is the discomfort overly long nails cause to your dog whilst walking. As a result, your dog will naturally find a more comfortable way to walk, often in an abnormal fashion, which can cause bone malformations and arthritis if left untreated.
Another problem with excessively long nails is that the way your dogs nails grow, they naturally curl back in towards the pad, or leg if they are dew claws, leading to painful puncture wounds and infection! As such, we’d always recommend that your dog will need a nail trim or file at least once a month.
For most family’s with dogs, nail trimming is the most dreaded task. As a dogs feet are so sensitive, and if they haven’t had their feet regularly handled, dogs do not enjoy the process much which leads to a wriggling dog and a wobbly hand. In turn, this can lead to cutting their nails too short causing pain and bleeding.
A professional dog groomer has the correct tools and technique to make the process as stress-free and positive as possible for your four-legged family member. Most importantly, they will cut your dog’s nails to the correct length. Nail trimming also offers a close view of your dog’s feet, highlighting concerns like swelling, matted fur between the pads and dry or cracked paws.
At Gallipots, we offer a great nail trimming service including Dorwest Paw & Nose Balm to keep your dogs feet in tip-top condition.
3. Happy Hair Care
An un-groomed dog is an unhappy dog. By not regularly brushing your dogs hair, their coat becomes matted, which is a tangled mass that pulls the skin. The matted fur will also harbour dirt and bacteria which will cause sores and skin infection. They are also the perfect hiding spot for fleas.
Mats can be very uncomfortable for your dog. For many breeds of dog, having their coat properly brushed and maintained is one of the most important reasons to have them professionally groomed. So if your dog has a curly or fine coat, it is crucial for you to look out for mats.
Grooming also means far less shedding. To keep less hair and dander out of your home, which add to indoor allergens, the best way to eliminate unwanted shedding is to get your dog to the groomers. At Gallipots, we’ll remove dander and any loose hair when bathing your dog before styling. We also know how to give your dog the best hairstyle.
4. The Right Dog Grooming Products
A bad workman, or woman, blames their tools is an old saying. This is only accurate when choosing the wrong tool or product for the job. Just like us humans, dogs have different, individual needs. For instance, dogs with a long coat will need different grooming tools than those with short coats, smooth coats, curly coats, wire coats, etc. Professional groomers are aware of this, so they only make use of the most suitable grooming supplies for your dog to avoid any irritation. Using the correct tools also means you’ll get the hairstyle you would like for your dog.
Another important consideration is the choice of shampoo’s, conditioners and treatments. As there are so many on the market today, selecting the correct product can be challenging. Always look for a dog groomer who uses high quality products, ideally that have natural ingredients that are good for your dogs skin, especially if they have sensitive a skin type. If in doubt, ask your groomer. We always welcome a chat on our great range of products.
5. Detecting Parasites
Professional groomers can immediately tell if your dog has parasites like fleas and ticks. Every square inch of your pet’s body is checked when grooming. Fleas and other parasites that may not be visible to you, but will be visible to your dog groomer.
Prior to bathing, a good dog groomer will look through your dogs coat to check for mats and skin conditions etc. Flea dirt can often be visible at this stage. Fleas are also often noticed in the bath and a deep massage, correct shampoo and wash means no flea will make it out alive.
On the other hand, ticks are more likely to be noticed and removed during the drying process. It’s important that whoever removes a tick has some training in how to do so. If a tick is removed incorrectly, there’s a high chance that the head will detach from the body of the tick and be left in your dogs skin, leading to a probable infection. It’s also important to check the area around the bite for any inflammation as this could be a sign of Lyme Disease.
The entire coat of your dog is separated, section by section, during the drying process until their entire coat is dry. While doing so, groomers will also remove the entire dead coat and check for any abnormal skin growth. This way, any serious problems will be detected and will help to avoid skin tags and warts when styling.
6. Anal Glands
Wondering what dog anal glands are? They are little sacs that sit on either side of the dog’s anus, around the 4 and 8 o’clock positions. Located just below the skin surface between the two layers of muscle of the sphincter controlling the anus. They produce an oily, foul-smelling yellow to brown fluid that dogs use to broadcast their scent telling other dogs who they are and to mark their territory. These glands are the reason that dogs sniff each other’s rear ends when they meet.
Your dogs feces should normally be firm. When your dog defecates, the anal glands become empty by the stool pushing against the glands and releasing (expressing) their contents. But when your dog’s stools are soft, they won’t exert enough pressure on the glands. And this can result in the glands failing to empty, causing discomfort when the full anal gland pushes on the anus.
Should anal glands be expressed every time when dog grooming?
The technique of expression involves squeezing the anal glands so its contents are released through the small openings on the sides of the anus. Anal gland expression is done to maintain your dog’s hygiene. Also, this will eliminate discomfort once the anal glands are emptied, reducing pressure that’s built up.
Visible signs of anal gland issues can include dragging their bottom on the ground and biting or licking at the anus. It can also include chasing their tails, or having difficulty standing or sitting. Though a groomer or a vet can manually empty your dogs anal glands, it’s best not to do this too regularly. Any excessive pressure you put on a gland can lead to more problems.
If your dog is constantly suffering from anal gland problems, it’s better to understand the root cause. Is it from soft stools, an allergy problem, an inflammatory issue or congenital problem? Addressing the cause of your pet’s discomfort is the best way to deal with this problem.
7. Massage Techniques
Massage for dogs you say!? It sounds like an unusual concept but can greatly benefit your dog. Massage for your dog stimulates their circulatory system and greatly reduces stress and tightness built up in the muscle. It also helps dogs who have stiff joints and arthritis if done correctly.
But massaging your dog can be a hard and complicated task if you are not aware of their muscle groups. A professional groomer is trained to give your dog a pleasurable and healthy massage. Every Full Groom at Gallipots includes a gentle body massage whilst your dog is being bathed, giving them a new spring in their step.
For dogs we see with more severe joint and mobility problems, we are able to help by referring you through to a local animal physiotherapist.
8. Great Fresh Smell
Although most people think dogs should smell like a dog, they should never smell bad. The musky smell that almost everyone is so used to is a result of a poorly groomed or dirty dog. Although we all know that our dogs love to find the nearest dirty puddle or fox poo, know that your dog does not want to smell bad all the time. Their are a multitude of different scented shampoos and perfumes. A fresh smelling dog is a happy dog.
Their natural scent is more readily available and not disguised by the every day build up of dirt and grime. They may not stay clean for long if they enjoy an active lifestyle. But keeping your dog clean and fresh means you’ll also be happier too with a dog you can cuddle close.
So make sure to have Gallipots keep the bad smell out of your dog’s hair and your house. We offer a range of dog grooming services including bathing, mini grooms to full grooming and styling. This will definitely result in a happier dog and home.
9. Valuable Dog Care Advice
Professional groomers are in the best position to check your dog’s skin. Whether their skin is too oily, dry or showing signs of damage, professional advice will help you make the right dietary or supplement choice. High quality food, vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients play an important role in your dog’s long-term health and wellbeing. We are what we eat and a poor diet, low in high quality nutrients can have long-lasting effects.
Remember that the skin of your dog will reflect their diet. But aside from dietary recommendations, groomers will also provide you with the correct dog care tips for daily maintenance. Teeth brushing is a regular regimen that will protect your dog’s teeth from dental diseases and bad breath. In the absence of brushing, bacteria will flourish in your dog’s mouth. And this can lead to plaque formation and even gum disease.
Regular ear cleaning is also vital which is regularly done at your groomers. You need to gently clean your pet’s ears regularly to prevent infections, especially if they are working dogs fond of water. We’d recommend using ear wipes using our specifically formulated ear cleaner. But if you want to use cotton balls for an ear rinse this is also fine. Pour it over the cotton ball and use this to clean your dog’s ears.
To reinforce ear cleaning as a positive experience, consider rewarding them with some of our healthy dog treats.
10. Mentally Healthy
A healthy body is a healthy mind. Dogs in good physical health are happier than those in a poor condition. If their coat is matted and dirty or if their nails are too long, they’re going to be in discomfort. In turn, this will make them exhibit personality changes that can range from mildly irritable to outright aggressive behavior. In fact, there’s every likelihood your dog will become depressed.
To avoid this, you must brush your dog’s hair between grooming appointments daily or weekly, depending on their breed with the right brush or comb. It’s also why its so important to take them regularly to a professional groomer. As your dogs family, this is just one of the many responsibilities you have.
Keeping your dog clean is more than just a pampering session. Professional dog grooming won’t just free you and your dog from bad odors and discomfort. It will also help detect any health issues and help your dog to become better socialised. Giving them another enjoyable activity in their lives.
Though frequency will greatly depend on your dog’s lifestyle, breed, and coat type, regular grooming will keep your dog clean, healthy and a happy companion for you and your family. So there’s no doubt about it, professional dog grooming is not just a luxury, it’s a commitment to your beloved family member.
For more advice on grooming your new puppy or dog, feel free to get in touch. Gallipots Dog Grooming in South Cave is in easy reach of Brough, Elloughton, Market Weighton, North Ferriby and Swanland. We cover the whole of East Yorkshire in fact.