Basic Grooming Tips:
Brush your dog or cat every day to keep his/her coat in the best condition. Regular brushing loosens dirt, prevents matting, and distributes the natural oils in your companion animal’s coat giving it a healthy sheen.
Cut your dog or cat’s nails at least once a month. If you don’t feel confident enough to do it yourself, many groomers and vets will do it for you for a nominal fee. You will need a guillotine-style clipper for best results. Do not use human nail clippers or scissors as you may end up crushing or splintering your companion animal’s nail. Take your companion animal’s paw and with gentle pressure, push on the paw pad to force the nail to extend slightly. Clip the nail slightly avoiding the quick. The quick is the part of the nail that contains the nerves and blood vessels. If can not see the quick, stop cutting at the point where the nail begins to curve. If you do cut the quick, don’t panic. Dab a cotton swab in some clotting powder and press it firmly on the nail for several seconds. Don’t forget to trim the dew claw which is located just inside of each front paw.
Clean your companion animal’s ears at least two times per month. The skin inside the ear flaps should be pale pink. If there is a bad odor and/or any red, brown, or black skin, you should have a veterinarian examine your companion animal’s ears. Use a cotton ball moistened with baby oil or warm water to gently wipe the opening to the ear canal and ear flaps. Do not stick anything into the ear canal.
Brush your companion animal’s teeth. Companion animals can get cavities too! Companion animal supply stores sell toothpaste with a small rubber “toothbrush” for cats and dogs that you put on you finger and use to massage your companion animal’s teeth. You can also use a small soft child’s toothbrush.
Wash your companion animal. Wash your dog every two to three months or as often as needed. Be sure to brush him before the bath to remove mats from his coat. Place cotton balls in your dog’s ear to prevent water from running into his ear canals. Wash your dog with warm water and avoid getting soap in his eyes. Never spray him in the face with water. Massage companion animal shampoo into your dog’s coat following the manufacturer’s directions, moving from the head to the tail. Rinse with warm water and dry him with a soft towel or a hair dryer on low power.