How to keep your little dog fit and healthy: daily grooming guidelines

Small dogs are adorable in large part due to their appearance and size – you just want to hug them to your chest. They may not like to jump through puddles like large dogs, but many of them still like to play outside. To keep your dog clean, healthy and ready to sit in your arms, regular grooming is essential. Choose the best harness for small dogs.

Care

Grooming a small dog is not just about brushing and trimming its coat. Full grooming also involves examining the ears and eyes, brushing teeth and trimming nails, so it’s best to entrust this to a professional. A visit to your dog’s hairdresser is also an ideal opportunity to check your dog for parasites (such as fleas and ticks) and see if your pet has dry or flaky skin.

Choosing a hairdresser

Professional hairdressers advise you to start caring for a small breed puppy immediately after the second round of vaccinations – especially if it is a breed that will require regular haircuts in the future. You can later enroll in a full grooming course every six to eight weeks, and your little dog will soon get used to that schedule. Bathe your pet in the evening the day before visiting the hairdresser so that he has less tangled hair, and just before leaving the specialist, go for a relaxing walk together.

Combing is a chance to make friends

Regularly brushing your small dog’s coat is the perfect chance to befriend her. Dogs with long coats (such as Shih Tsu) should be brushed every day, and with medium coats (Cavalier King Charles Spaniels) once a week. Short-haired dogs (such as the French Bulldog) can be brushed once a month using a rubber mitten brush. Brush gently in the direction of hair growth. If you’re worried about pushing too hard, use a puppy brush – its bristles are softer. This brush is ideal for sensitive skin.

Understanding the characteristics of the breed

Knowing what your small dog’s breed was originally bred for will help you understand why its coat is short, smooth or curly. For example, the Jack Russell Terrier breed was bred for running in fields and digging holes, which is why these dogs’ fine coats are so short and harsh. Learning more about your small dog’s breed and potential physical activity will help you understand how to brush and trim its coat.

Simplification of the bathing process

Most small dogs only need to be bathed once a month, in water slightly warmer than room temperature. You can use a special dog shampoo and conditioner to smooth the coat. Using a special white coat shampoo can improve the color and shine of the coat in dogs such as the Bichon Frize.

Additional care

To keep your small dog’s coat smooth and shiny, you can use a detangling spray, which can make brushing much easier between full grooming sessions. In winter, apply special wax to the paw pads with massaging movements to prevent cracking, and in summer (on sunny days) use a special lotion with UV filter for dogs to protect the nose and ears from sunburn.

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