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Dog Grooming Tips

When it comes to grooming manís best friend, some dogs are naturally easier to care for than others.  A dog with long hair, for instance, requires daily brushing while a dog with shorter hair may only require brushing several times each week.  The best way to approach dog grooming is to assess what your dog needs and find the most effective way of keeping him/her looking fluffed and fabulous.


The first step to grooming your dog is to find the right brush for the job.  You should start by letting your dog sniff the comb or brush before beginning with gentle strokes that will allow your pet to get acquainted with the feeling of being brushed.  Although this may promote a nervous or anxious feeling at first, your dog will soon adapt to the process.  You should always brush in the direction of the hair growth and be aware of any knots or tangles that may be present.  If you find any problem areas that are resistant to regular brushing and/or an anti-tangle comb, you can carefully remove the tangle with scissors.


Every dog ownerís approach is different when it comes to bathing their pet, but itís an important step that must not go overlooked.  Despite their fascination with dirt, dogs donít want to stay dirty and they rely on us to make sure they are clean.  In the beginning, most dogs will be resistant to the idea of a bath, which is why itís important to get them used to the process as early as possible.  If you teach him/her how to act at a young age, bath time will be a breeze by the time your pup reaches adulthood.  Depending on the size of your dog, you may need an extra pair of hands to hold him/her while you proceed with the bath.  Itís important that your pet not slip away until being fully rinsed of any shampoo.


The final step to grooming your dog is clipping and filing his/her nails.  It is important to use only those trimmers that are specifically designed for this purpose.  While holding the dogís paw firmly in your hand, cut the tip of the nail with a single stroke making certain to stop before reaching the quick.  This area is most visible immediately following a bath, but can also be enhanced with the use of baby oil.  After clipping your dogís nails properly, using a file will help to smooth over any rough areas that may be left behind.


The information contained in this article is designed to be used for reference purposes only.  It should not be used as, in place of or in conjunction with professional veterinary advice and/or recommendations surrounding dog grooming.  For additional information on techniques, safety and health concerns, consult with your local veterinarian. 

Tips to Caring for a Puppy


Your new puppy needs to be stimulated both mentally and physically, which means regular exercise and learning should be an important part of his/her everyday life.  Itís essential that you walk your puppy at least twice a day to promote coordination and learning, but make sure that he/she has adjusted to a collar and is comfortable wearing it before proceeding.  Play, pet and talk to your puppy to encourage both social and people skills on a daily basis.  When company visits, you will want your puppy to be on his/her best behavior and the proper social skills will go a long way in making both your guests and your pup feel more comfortable.  


Growing puppies have a healthy appetite and, as such, you will need to be ready for a picky eater.  Most puppy food manufacturers offer feeding guidelines on both dry and canned food, which are essential in making sure your new friend has a healthy eating pattern.  If possible, keep the feeding times on a regular schedule so that your puppy will begin to develop a familiar routine.  Always make sure that your puppy has fresh, clean drinking water and a dry place to sleep.  Cold drinking water is the norm for those hot summer days, but many pups prefer warm water in the winter. 


An important part of caring for a puppy is proper veterinary attention, which includes vaccinations and regular checkups.  Some states require that puppies receive a rabies vaccination when they reach the appropriate age and are required to receive a booster every two years after that.  For your state laws regarding animal vaccinations, consult with your local veterinarian and always keep a written record of your puppyís medical history, vaccinations and other important facts relating to his/her healthcare.


Speaking of health, one of the most common problems that many puppies face is that of tapeworms, which look like rice, and roundworms, which look like long pasta noodles.  If you notice anything out of the ordinary in your petís stool, consult with a local veterinarian for treatment.  In many cases, over-the-counter liquid worm medicine can be purchased at pet stores and local retailers for the purpose of ridding your pet of these unwanted parasites.


The information contained in this article is designed to be used for reference purposes only.  It should not be used as, in place of or in conjunction with professional veterinary advice and/or recommendations surrounding puppy care.  For additional information, consult with your local veterinarian.  

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