Dog Grooming Tips

Dog Grooming & Bathing Basics

Grooming your dog isn’t as difficult as you might think; rather, it’s an important part of caring for your pet. Grass, dirt, and loose hair can get trapped in your dog’s coat and can contribute to matting and skin infections as well as provide safe harbor for parasites and other pests. To keep your dog in tip-top shape, commit to a regular grooming schedule that fits your dog’s needs.

How often should you groom?

This depends upon your dog’s coat. A short-haired dog won’t require brushing as often as a curly-haired pooch or those with longer, "drop-down” coats. Grooming also includes bathing and nail clipping, which should be done as needed. Obviously, a dog that spends a great amount of time outdoors will likely need to bathe more often than the dog that remains inside. Before you bathe, spend a few minutes brushing your dog to unsettle any dirt.

If your dog has any matted areas, remove those before the bath – they’ll be harder to remove once they are wet. Our Dematting Knife is a handy little tool that allows you to remove unsightly matts in a snap. We also recommend a Grooming Comb to help remove loose hair, dead undercoat, and excess fluffing.

It’s a good idea to introduce your dog to grooming immediately and slowly increase the amount of time you spend per session. As your dog becomes accustomed to the routine, he’ll learn to enjoy the experience and look forward to the event. Using the right tools can make the process more pleasurable so take a few minutes to familiarize yourself with different brushes and combs available today.

Dog Grooming Accessories

The Long Pin Brush, for example, is perfect for dogs with long or drop coats. The extra-long pins are made of nickel-plated steel and embedded in a rubber base. Dogs with sensitive skin will do better with the Ball-tipped Brushes. These brushes also feature the nickel-plated steel pins but with a smooth ball tip for reduced irritation.

Get the most out of bath time with our Rubber Bathing Brushes. These softer brushes are perfect for short, smooth coat dogs and also work great as a skin massager on long haired breeds. The rubber bathing brush stimulates the natural oils in your dog’s coat and helps remove loose hair and dead skin.

Undercoat Rakes are another great way to remove dead undercoating. These lightweight tools feature a soft rubber grip and come in both long and short pin styles. The effective T-handle design allows the undercoat rake to remove dead undercoating without touching your dog’s topcoat. Our Slicker Brushes feature steel pins with coated tips for effective loose hair removal without irritating or scratching the skin.

Nail Trimming Tips

Think you can’t trim your dog’s nails? Think again. Your dog’s regular grooming schedule should include nail trimming if necessary to ensure they remain at a safe and comfortable length. Many dogs don’t need regular pedicures as their nails wear down naturally. Use bath time to give your dog’s nails a quick makeover. If you notice long nails that have begun to curl downward, it’s time to take out your clippers.

Clipping your dog’s nails isn’t as difficult as you might think. The nails are narrow and round, making them relatively easy to clip. Just above the nail is the quick - the portion of the nail that is "alive” with circulatory blood vessels. Cut too high and you risk cutting into the quick. To prevent this, choose a time when you aren’t rushed and can leisurely clip your dog’s nails. Start out slow. Trying to cut the entire nail in one clip is a no-no; instead, make smaller cuts until you reach the desired length.

There are several sizes and styles of Nail Clippers available. Choosing the right one will depend largely on personal preference and the size of your dog’s nails. We carry a wide selection of nail clippers so that you can find the perfect pair for you and your dog.

To start with, sit in a position where you can comfortably hold your dog’s paw. For smaller dogs, you may want to simply place your pet in your lap. Hold your dog’s paw gently but firmly and use your fingers to isolate a single nail. Dogs with lighter colored nails are easiest, as you can clearly spot the pink quick area you want to avoid. Dogs with darker nails don’t have the visible pink quick, but if you begin cutting, you’ll notice that the end of the nail begins to get darker as you go. The dark area represents the quick and you want to make sure you leave that intact. As a guide, your dog’s nails should just touch the floor. Anything longer is too much. Anything shorter and you risk cutting into the quick.

To position the clippers, you’ll want to cut from the bottom up so that you can clearly see the blade against the nail. Once you have the clippers positioned, squeeze firmly to cut the nail. When you’ve reached the desired length, you can let your dog file down the rough edges naturally or use one of our Double Sided Nail Files to smoothen out the nail.

Should you accidentally cut too much, simply apply some Cut2Close, our styptic powder aide with antiseptic to stop the bleeding.

Dog Grooming Tools Basics

Bristle Brushes

Our bristle brushes are perfect for removing loose hair and small mats. Regular brushing helps minimize shedding and improves the overall look and health of your dog’s coat by stimulating the natural oils in the skin. Maximize your grooming sessions by using this time to bond with your pet.

Grooming Combs

Dogs that require more than just a good brushing are an ideal match for our grooming combs. Available in a range of sizes to meet the needs of your dog’s individual coat type, these combs add additional control to your grooming sessions.

Rubber Brushes

Dogs with short-haired coats are relatively easy to groom and our rubber brush is the perfect tool. The soft bristles help to remove loose hair and stimulate the natural oils in the coat and skin for a healthy sheen.

Shedding Blades

Our shedding blades are a great way to remove extreme amounts of shedding that can’t be controlled by regular brushing. Dogs that shed excessively and those that are losing their winter coat can benefit from the shedding blade. Removing loose hair can also help minimize the amount of hair left on your floors and furniture.

Slicker Brushes

Slicker brushes are a great tool for general grooming and detangling. These are useful in removing mats and loose hair to minimize shedding. Regular grooming with a slicker brush will help keep your dog’s coat looking healthier and smoother.

Pin Brushes

Our steel pin brushes are the perfect solution for your general grooming needs. Steel pin brushes remove dirt and debris as well as loose hair. This helps minimize shedding and also improves the overall look and feel of your dog’s coat.

Undercoat Rakes & Dematting Tools

Our undercoat rake helps control matting and tangles on the dog’s short undercoat. It’s non-irritating yet effective in detangling your dog’s coat. Larger mats can be removed easily with our dematting knife. A sharper alternative to the undercoat rake, our dematting knife cuts through the most stubborn of tangles.

Flea Comb

A fine tooth comb designed to be used on pets for removing fleas, flea eggs and flea pupae. Once pets have been bathed, fleas and flea eggs will be sufficiently loose so they can be combed out of fur.

Double Sided Nail File

Double sided nail file. Soft, non-slip/durable handles provide cushion and control while absorbing pressure and reducing fatigue.

Nail Clipper

Stainless steel blades and safety guard are chemically-treated to prevent rust. Their soft, non-slip/durable handles provide cushion and control while absorbing pressure and reducing fatigue. They can be sharpened.

Styptic Powder

A safe, quick styptic powder aid, with antiseptic to stop bleeding caused by nail clipping.

Wire-haired Coats

Most Terriers and Schnauzers fit this category of coat. Short and coarse, wire-haired dogs are prone to matting and trapping debris in their coats. To prevent this, regular grooming is necessary to keep the coats clean and healthy.

Our Steel Pin Brushes work great on this type of coat, as does a general Bristle Brush. Use a Slicker brush to remove any loose hair and dirt. You can maximize your grooming sessions with one of our Combination Brushes that combine the slicker or steel pin brush with our general bristle brush. We also recommend using a Flea Comb to keep your dog pest free.

Short-haired Coats

Rottweilers and Dobermans are two good examples of a short-haired breed. This type of coat is generally easy to groom and shedding is typically minimal.

Our Rubber Grooming Brushes are a great general tool to brush the coat and help stimulate the natural oils in the skin. Also on the list are our Bristle Brushes and Combo Brushes. To control parasites and pests, use one of our Flea Combs on a regular basis. Shedding Blades would only be needed during peak shedding season.

Curly-haired Coats

Curly-haired dogs include breeds, such as the Poodle, that present some serious grooming challenges. This type of coat is coarse and curly, making regular grooming sessions a must. In addition to brushing, you’ll want to consider regular clipping as well to keep the coat under control. We recommend one of our Steel Pin Brushes as well as a Slicker Brush to remove debris and loose hair while keeping the coat groomed and healthy. Another option is our Combination Brushes that give you the benefits of the steel pin or slicker brush plus our general use bristle brush. Shedding can often be a concern with curly haired coats, so a good Shedding Comb is a must. We also recommend our Dematting Tools to keep the coat free from mats and serious tangles.

Double Coats

Breeds, such as the Labrador Retriever and the Yorkshire Terrier, have what is known as a double coat; a short, smooth inner coat that helps protect against the elements and then an outer coat, which can come in a variety of textures. Dogs with shorter outer coats can be groomed effectively with a Slicker Brush or one of our Combination Brushes. Dogs with longer, "drop-down” outer coats also need the benefits of regular grooming with a Grooming Comb. Our Shedding Comb and Undercoat Rake are suitable tools for both varieties to help keep the inner and outer coats free from debris and loose hair. A Flea Comb is a must-have, regardless of your particular breed and our Dematting Tools are perfect for removing tangles and mats.


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