For someone as busy as you are, a mundane activity like grooming your dog becomes a chore. But, it’s not a good idea to skip regular grooming because apart from making your pooch look gorgeous and clean, grooming has other benefits like a health check.
Other Benefits of Dog Grooming:
- To remove old and damaged hair.
- Reduces grease that can block the pores and lead to skin ailments.
- Clean ears to prevent the fungus from thriving in your dog’s ears.
- If the hairs in the eye area are not removed, it can irritate your dog’s eyes.
- Injuries can be prevented from regular nail trimming. Plus, you wouldn’t want your pooch to scratch your skin because of long nails.
Having said all those benefits that come with dog grooming, let us help you decipher how to choose the best groomer for your beloved dog.
1. Check the Groomer’s Salon
Do not commit yet until you have seen the place. Is it clean? Cleanliness minimizes the chance of your dog contracting contagious diseases like skin disease and kennel cough.
Does it smell nice? If yes, then it means that the groomer makes an effort to sanitize the dog salon. What about ventilation? Does the salon use dog-friendly bathtubs, work stations, and other grooming paraphernalia to ensure your dog’s safety?
After checking the dog salon, ask yourself if you are comfortable leaving your pooch there (usually 2 to 3 hours) for its vanity time.
2. Menu of Services
Aside from the usual shampoo and haircut, you may also want to find out what are the other services the groomer offers.
Does the groomer provide an anal sac cleaning service? That’s important because if the anal sac is not properly drained, it will lead to anal sac disease. What happens is the anal sac gland gets inflamed and eventually your dog will have a difficult time passing stool. In advanced stages, there’d be pus and blood from the infected area.
Are the paws of your canine pal dry and cracked? If yes, does the dog groomer offer pad and paw treatment? Paw care is as important for your four-legged baby. This is to prevent injuries especially during winter when ice can accumulate between the pads.
Not to forget the relaxing dog spa services like massage (good for stressed pooches) and nail polish application for a more fabulous look.
In other words, look for a groomer who is capable of doing more than just haircutting and shampooing.
3. Groomer’s Training Background
The background of the dog groomer can vary. Some of them learn through apprenticeships while others completed the number of hours required to be certified/professional dog groomers. Some may even go as far as investing time and money to partake in enrichment programs to further improve their knowledge regarding the latest trends in dog grooming.
Depending on where you live, some states only allow certified/professional groomers to take on the job. This means that they have passed both the written and the practical exams by the accredited dog grooming schools.
4. Experience With Your Dog’s Breed
Dogs come in different sizes and coat-style. Some dog breeds have specialized grooming requirements. Say, for example, the Bichon Frisè dog breed looks best with a cotton ball look which is pretty hard to attain.
Before you commit, we recommend that you ask the groomer if she/he knows the breed standard look and whether the dog groomer can do the right haircut for your dog breed.
Also, if your beloved dog competes in shows, the groomer plays a vital role in coming up with a look that will make your dog stand out, and hopefully gets the ‘crown’.
5. How Will the Groomer Handle Medical Emergencies, Just in Case?
As a fur parent, one of your fears is the probability of your dog getting hurt during the grooming process. You are not alone in that predicament. But, it will give you assurance knowing that if an accident happens, the groomer is ready with the first-aid kit.
In the same way that the groomer should know how to handle dogs with certain disabilities like hip dysplasia and mammary tumor.
Is your dog the anxious type, the one that is kinda hard to restrict its movements? Then you should ask the groomer beforehand if he/she has the ‘talent’ in pacifying an overactive dog to avoid accidents. There are dog salons that have multiple dog groomers to handle a difficult dog.
If you think your dog ‘cannot make it’ in a dog salon due to its anxiety, you may want to inquire if the groomer offers a pet mobile salon where the groomer will be the one to go to your home. This way, your anxious dog will be groomed in familiar territory.
6. How Will Your Dog Be Housed?
If you do not have an appointment, your pooch might have to wait a bit for its turn. Or, even if you have an appointment, it is not a guarantee that your dog will be groomed right away.
You may want to know how your dog will be housed while in a queue. Will your dog have its crate or not? For health reasons, the ideal is for your dog to have its clean crate placed in an airy area, plus has a view of the salon staff.
7. Ask About the Products
You wouldn’t want cheap grooming products to be used on your fur baby as these can cause skin irritations. For your dog’s well-being, ask and even look at the shampoo, conditioner, and powder they use.
What you want to see are grooming products that do not contain strong chemicals. It is better if the dog groomer uses natural, hypoallergenic products.
8. The Prices
We all know that having a doggie salon day is not cheap. What you can do is to compare the price structures of two to three dog salons.
A lot of dog grooming salons offer the standard service of bathing, nail clipping, ear cleaning, toothbrush, and coat cutting in one package. The add-on services like paw cleaning and anal sac draining have additional fees.
And, in case your beloved dog has special needs like flea and tick medicated shampoo or mange treatment shampoo, there are usually additional charges. Extreme matting might also have extra charges.
Just so you know, depending on the dog groomer, the rates may not be the same if your dog is challenging to handle.
Watch Out for…
If only our fur babies could talk, they would tell you which groomer is nice or not. Upon taking your fur baby home from the grooming salon, observe how it behaves.
If your dog seems nervous or becomes ‘too vocal’, your pet may be telling you something. Some even go through a bout of diarrhea for a few days due to stress and anxiety from the handling of the groomer. If you see those signs, that’s your beloved dog’s way of telling you that ‘it is not comfortable with the groomer’.
- 10 Things You Need to Know About Long-haired Chihuahua
- 10 Things You Didn’t Know About Short-haired German Shepherd
Dog grooming is an essential part of your pet’s life. But, do not just go into any dog salon without learning more about the background of the dog groomer. Remember that an inexperienced groomer can harm your pet (physically and psychologically), so before you commit, ask and, observe.
When you bring your pet to the groomer, you expect that it will be safe and well-cared for. And, when you pick-up your pet, you expect it to look and feel at its best. By considering the guides we helped you with, you can be sure that you selected the best groomer for your beloved dog.