Two Lessons From A Dog Groomer

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This year I’ve started an exciting new career in dog grooming. It has been much more challenging and rewarding than I imagined. The more I learn about grooming the more I realized that I had quite a few misconceptions about it, and I’d like to share some of the lessons I’ve learned. I’ll share a few with you now, and a few more in my next post.

First, grooming is not just for schnauzers and poodles. Any breed of dog can benefit from a professional groom. I own a pit bull and he has a short coat, so it’s easy just to throw him in the bath tub and towel dry him. He’s gotten to be my “practice dog” dozens of times now. I have been very impressed by what it has done for his health and appearance. Regular bathing and blow drying (and all the components of a good groom) has caused his coat to be bright and shiny, and has even helped to ease his seasonal skin allergies. A thorough professional grooming on a regular basis can be good for any breed of dog, not just those with fancy haircuts.

Second, training your dog will make the grooming process much better for the groomer and your dog. Simple commands like stay, sit, stand, and even shake are very helpful in the grooming process. These commands allow the groomer to get your dog in the best position for grooming. In general, a dog who knows basic commands, and is comfortable with strangers is much easier and faster to groom. Dogs who are stubborn and don’t listen make the grooming process much more difficult and stressful for the dog and the groomer. So keep up with your basic obedience, particularly if you have a dog that needs a fancy groom or has a thick time consuming coat. If you’ve got a poodle who needs their feet shaved or a goldendoodle who needs their eyebrows and beard trimmed they need to be comfortable with their feet and face being touched.

So remember to play with your dogs feet! Even the most gentle and calm dogs often don’t like their feet touched. Getting them acclimated to it from a young age makes nail trimming much easier.

Until next time!

Ashley Hay is a certified pet-training instructor and dog groomer with over seven years of professional animal caretaking experience. She lives in Nashville, TN with her husband Dan and two dogs, Hamilton (American Staffordshire Terrier) and Hudson (Pembroke Welsh Corgi).

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