You just left with your pet from the salon, having got a really expensive grooming session for her. You walk out relieved that you don’t have to undergo another session for six weeks or so. However, a couple of weeks later she is beginning to look a little “shabby.” What can you do?

Relax! Here are a few tips on what to do to keep your dog looking (and smelling!) great until her next visit to the grooming salon.

1) Brushing coats

Regular brushing of your dog will remove dirt, dead hair and unpleasant debris from the coat and the skin. Brushing will also keep your dog’s coat shiny and healthy.

Pooches with longer-hair or thicker coats need more than just brushing to keep their coat matt free. Follow-up the brushing with a metal comb that gets down to the skin and disperses any matting that is starting to form. Be sure to proceed gently as your pup’s skin can be particularly sensitive.

2) Brushing teeth

It’s common for pet dogs to get their teeth brushed when they visit pet salons, but that’s not sufficient. You should ideally brush your dog’s teeth daily, or even every other day.

Ensure that you only use toothpaste made especially for dogs. Human toothpaste contains unsafe ingredients for them to swallow and unfortunately dogs can’t spit. Use either a dog specific toothbrush or a child’s toothbrush that will be softer on your dog’s gums. If you find it difficult to brush your dog’s teeth, a rubber finger brush, dental sprays, and special chew treats can be helpful.

3) Trimming nails

Nails on some dog breeds grow more quickly than others, with some requiring trimming every two weeks, and yet others as much as six weeks.

Nail trimming is everyone’s least favorite task. If you adhere to your 6 – 8-week grooming sessions, you can very well get by with just “clipping” the tips of the nails.

4) Cleaning Ears

All pets need their ears cleaned regularly. A buildup of bacteria or wax in the ears can result in infections. If you have a dog with long or heavy ears that flop over the ear canal, cleaning should be more frequent.

Wet a cotton ball with a cleansing solution, start off with the outside area and gradually work your way into the inner area. Cotton swabs are not recommended for use deep inside the ear canal, but you can use them to clean the folds on the outer ear flaps.

5) Washing faces

Some breeds like pugs and shar peis sport skin folds or wrinkles on their face. Moisture and dirt can accumulate within those folds setting-up the perfect environment for yucky bacteria. So it is essential to keep these folds clean and dry. Even baby wipes or a warm washcloth will do the trick. If you notice rashes, bumps or odor, see your vet.

6) Cleaning eyes

Some dog breeds are prone to accumulating excessive eye “goop.” This excessive tears or discharges collect in the corners of the eyes and can get crusty. It’s recommended to loosen the goop with a warm wet washcloth first, and then using a flea comb to remove it. Note that excessive discharge can be a symptom of conjunctivitis. If you notice redness, signs of irritation or a funky odor, have your vet take a look at it.

Last, but not least, give them regular baths to keep them smelling and looking great!

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