Are you ready for Three Tips to Help Prepare Your Puppy for Grooming?
Whether it is your first puppy or another puppy to add to your canine family tree, there is always an opportunity to learn how to better prepare our puppies for the world that lies ahead of them!
You might be thinking to yourself, “Well, my dog will never require a haircut” or “My puppy hardly has any hair – he/she doesn’t need professional grooming.” We hear you loud and clear but we are here to help! Whether you are used to having a dog who requires grooming or this is your first go around, it is important to understand grooming is one of the essential elements of basic care for the health and wellness of your pup – no matter their coat length! Correct, professional pet grooming can help promote healthy skin, coat and nails while eliminating odors, matting, shedding and identifying potentially severe health conditions before they put your pup at risk. Maintaining a regular grooming schedule can also help beyond the surface by promoting positive behavior, supporting emotional wellbeing, and aid in developing a well-rounded, socialized pup for a lifetime to come.
To help you prepare your new puppy for their future grooming services, it is important to start practicing several handling techniques to ensure a smooth transition into our grooming salon. Practicing these three essential techniques will help you and your puppy get the most out of every trip to the grooming salon! Here are the three tips to help prepare your puppy for grooming.
Introducing a Brush
You can begin introducing the grooming process by showing your puppy a soft brush and using the back of the brush to help them become familiar with the strokes and pressure of brushing. This will help build a positive association with the brushing process while including lots of praise and high value treats to reward them for being so brave. Once they are comfortable with the back of the brush, you can begin turning the brush around and work in small areas – do not attempt to brush your entire puppy in one sitting. Aiming to work on small sections will help them understand the temporary nature of each brushing session so they can quickly get back to doing more important puppy things!
WAIT! Now, we are not encouraging you to start trimming their nails at home (this could result in developing a negative connotation with nail trims) however we are encouraging you to start holding your puppy’s very delicate paws. Once they become confident with you holding their paws, start applying light pressure to the nail beds and paw pads. Practicing these techniques along with praise and high value treats will continue to build positive association behaviors for their future nail trims.
Holding their Face
Helping your puppy learn to have their face held or handled is another important part of introducing grooming. Your puppy will learn to have their ears/eyes cleaned and maybe even get their face trimmed as long as they are comfortable and confident with having hands around their face. The face is another very delicate area for puppies and the earlier you can introduce proper face handling, the more confident they will be during the grooming process. Lightly hold your puppy by the chin and use your fingers around the eyes, ears and visor to better acclimate them to having their faces washed and/or trimmed.
Each of these techniques should be practiced in short increments with lots of praise and high value treats to help reinforce positive behaviors. It is important to practice these sessions in a quiet area of your home with minimal distractions for both you and your puppy. Always conclude your session with high value treats, lots of praise, letting them go outside to play, toss around a new toy, or snuggle in close for cuddles – further reinforcing the idea that they will be rewarded with some of their favorite activities when they learn to be patient and confident for the grooming process.
Here at Morris Animal Inn, we are eager to meet your puppy and help build a lifetime of positive grooming experiences. We are happy to offer Puppy Grooming services which include a bath, ear cleaning, brush-out, and nail trim. Our Puppy Grooming packages includes personalized, one on one attention throughout the grooming process, ensuring their safety and emotional well-being to get the most out of their service! Puppy Grooming can also include light trimming while introducing your puppy to their first haircut! This exciting milestone is commemorated with a special certificate and locket of hair for you to cherish.
Call us today to let us help establish your puppy’s essential grooming needs to promote a happy, healthy pet for a lifetime to come.