Dog Grooming and Bathing Guide

The Full Dog Grooming & Bathing Guide For Your Little Friend!

Dogs are the most popular pet in Australia, with approximately 3.6 million Australian households owning a dog. If you have a dog or are considering adopting a dog, it's essential to understand how to best look after your pet. From dog training to playing together, there's a lot to think about. Dog grooming also needs to be part of your responsibilities as an owner. 

We appreciate that grooming can be confusing for many new dog owners. Therefore, we've created the ultimate grooming and bathing guide for pet owners, teaching you how to groom a dog and how often to bathe your dog. We help you make sense of every step to create a safe and caring grooming routine with your pet using our dog-friendly grooming products. 

Why Is It Important To Regularly Bathe Your Dog?

Bathing your dog presents a lot of benefits.

First of all, dogs love to play outside, roll in the grass and dirt (and other less pleasant substances). A bath is an easy way to maintain your dog's hygiene.

The bath also lets you check your dog's health, starting with unwanted parasites, such as fleas, mites and lice, that can hide deep underneath the fur. During the bath, remember to check nails, teeth, ears, and skin too. The sooner you spot anomalies, the sooner you can treat them too.

A frequent bath and a good brushing can reduce shedding and capture loose hair early.

Another advantage of maintaining your dog's fur is that it gives you greater control over allergic reactions. Indeed, a dog's fur can trap allergens, bacteria, and dirt.

A regular bath will help keep your dog's coat soft and shiny.

Last but not least, a bath strengthens the bond between the owner and the dog.

How Often To Bathe Your Dog

Dogs do not need a wash every day. However, how regularly you need to plan a bath will depend on many factors.

For most dogs, a bath once a month is a good baseline. With this in mind, dog owners also need to consider:

How Active The Dog Is

A dog who spends a lot of time playing outside will require more frequent bathing.

Allergies or skin problems issues

Dogs who suffer from allergies or skin issues also require regular baths with specialist medicated shampoos.

The presence of fur inside your home can trigger issues or make it hard to maintain a clean household. Regular baths can dramatically reduce the presence of dog's fur and dandruff inside your home.

Type of coat

Your dog's fur and skin will also dictate how frequently you need to wash them. Hairless breeds and breeds with oily skin need a weekly bath to protect their skin. Dogs with long or curly hair need a monthly bath and a lot of brushing to maintain their coats. Short-haired breeds with water-repellent coats or smooth coats, such as Golden Retrievers or Beagles, do fine with baths every 6 to 9 weeks if they are healthy. Thick and double coats dogs also do better with fewer baths as long as you brush them regularly.

Can You Use Human Shampoos on Dogs?

Your dog's skin has a pH balance of 7.5. In comparison, human skin has a pH of 5.5. In other words, using human shampoo could irritate your dog's skin, as your everyday shampoo is going to be too acidic for your pooch.

Shampoos designed for dogs are formulated with ingredients that can maintain their skin and coat health: insecticides to remove unwanted pests, salicylic acid, oatmeal, lactic acid, glycerin, etc.

How To Bathe Your Dog:

Hopefully, these few tips on how to bathe a dog will help you. Ideally, you want to brush your dog before the bath to remove matted and loose hair.

Step 1: First of all, select a safe spot for the bath. Small dogs can fit in the sink; you might need to get larger breeds in the shower or the bathtub. You can also invest in a portable dog tub.

Step 2: Gently introduce your dog to bathing, using petting, stroking, and treats to boost their confidence. Remember to be patient and get them used to the lukewarm water slowly.

Step 3: When your dog is comfortable, use dog shampoo to massage their coat. Always avoid eyes, ears, and nose. You will clean these with different products.

Step 4: Rinse your dog thoroughly, running your finger through the coat to make sure you remove all the shampoo.

Step 5: If you are using a conditioner, repeat the same steps as the shampoo to apply and rinse safely.

Step 6: Dry your dog using a towel unless you have a blow-dryer designed for dogs.

Step 7: Finish the bath time with a reward and/or a game. 

The Best Dog Bathing Products:

Using products specifically designed for dog's fur and skin can make the bath a positive and safe experience.

Dog Shampoos

Dog-friendly shampoos are a must-have. For everyday use, we strongly recommend the following products: 

Dog Conditioners

If you wish to use a conditioner, we prefer these pH balanced products that leave your dog's fur soft and shiny:

Dog Ear Cleaners

You can't use shampoo to clean your dog's ear. These smart products can help maintain ear hygiene:

Dog Eye Cleaners

Keep shampoo out of your dog's eyes. Instead, you can use these:

Dog Towels

Using a towel or specialist product designed for dogs can help keep your furry friend dry:

Grooming Your Dog

We now review the essential dog grooming steps to keep your pet clean and healthy. 

Why Is It Important To Groom Your Dog?

Grooming your pet is crucial for their health and appearance:

Firstly, grooming can reduce discomfort caused by overgrown hair, matted fur, and the accumulation of loose dead hair. It can cause itchiness, oily skin, and soreness for your pet. Additionally, if you suffer from allergies, grooming will also reduce the presence of dog's hair and dandruff inside your home.

Dog grooming protects your feet and joints, as untrimmed nails will lead to pains, arthritis, and even bone deformation.

You can check your dog's health, as you will become aware of anomalies and abnormal lumps and bumps on the skin.

Grooming is a sign of love, and it will bring your relationship closer.

Finally, the process maintains the coat's healthy shine by removing loose hair and stimulating hair growth. 

How Often Should You Groom Your Dog?

When it comes to grooming, there are some essential rules that every dog owner needs to follow.

All breeds will require at least a monthly nail trim.

Brushing will vary depending on your dog's fur, but as a rule of thumb, weekly brushing is a minimum for all breeds.

Short-haired breeds require minimal brushing.

Medium-haired dogs such as German Shepherds require brushing a few times a week to remove dandruff and loose hair. Some breeds also need their coat trimmed a couple of times a year.

Long hair is prone to matting, so these breeds require daily brushing. Many breeds need their coat trimmed 4 to 6 times a year by a professional groomer.

How To Groom Your Dog:

If you are not familiar with dog grooming, these simple steps can help make you both comfortable.

Step 1: Introduce your dog to the grooming kit, including brush and nail clippers. Most dogs love a good brushing, as long as you purchase the right type of brush for their coats. Nail clippers are often a source of anxiety, so remember to get your dog used to it slowly.

Step 2: Pick a grooming spot, either outside to avoid cleaning or inside a room that is easy to maintain, such as the utility area.

Step 3: Start with the brushing, ensuring you don't press the comb too hard against your dog's skin. Make sure to pet your dog and speak in a calm voice as you do.

Step 4: If the fur requires trimming, ensure your dog will not move. Get your dog used to the clipper's noises and go slowly and in the hair direction. You can use perfume after coat trimming.

Step 5: You can distract your dog with a treat to keep them calm. Ideally, you want to get them used to the clipper beforehand. Pick a paw and hold it firmly but gently, using your thumb on the pad of the toe and your forefinger above the nail. Pushing your thumb backward and your forefinger forward will extend the nail. Clip the top straight across, avoid the curve of the nail.

Step 6: Praise and reward your dog.

The Best Dog Grooming Products:

Using the right grooming equipment will keep your dog safe and healthy:

Dog Brushes

Choosing the right brush for your dog's coat is essential for good grooming practice: 

Dog Nail Clippers & Filers

Dog Perfumes

Dog perfumes do not replace a bath. But they can keep your dog smelling fresh when you can't bathe your pet:

Dog Clippers

If you wish to cut your dog's hair, you need a quality clipper, we recommend:

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