There’s nothing better than snuggling up with your dog after a long day… that is, unless your dog stinks!
Dog grooming must be done regularly, not just to make your pup look and smell nice, but also to take care of his hygiene and keep him healthy.
Of course, you can take your dog to a professional groomer for any or all pet grooming services — wash, brush, teeth cleaning, nail trimming, ear cleaning, and more.
But all this grooming needs to be done regularly to keep your good boy clean and paying for all those services on a regular basis not only cleans up your dog, but cleans out your wallet.
If you’re interested in grooming your dog at home, you’ll need to understand some basics of dog grooming and obtain some special equipment.
This article will explain everything you need to know about human clippers vs dog clippers and home grooming for dogs.
Can You Use Human Clippers on Dogs? Are They the Same?
Technically, no. Although dog clippers and human clippers may look similar and serve the same purpose, which is to trim the hair (or fur), dog clippers and human clippers have a few important differences.
Simply put, human clippers are designed for and compatible with human hair, while dog clippers work for dog hair. Using human clippers on dogs won’t only make grooming much more difficult, but it could even injure your dog.
That’s because human clippers have a smaller blade than dog clippers and are designed to cut closer to the skin. Dog clippers have larger blades that allow for running through longer lengths of coats and don’t cut as closely to the skin, which helps prevent cuts or pulling out hair.
What Kind of Clippers Do Dog Groomers Use?
Dog groomers typically stock a variety of clippers and blade attachments and will use different ones based on the size of the dog, the length, or texture of his hair, and even his sensitivity to noise.
If you’re considering grooming your pup at home, it’s a good idea to have him groomed professionally first and then ask your groomers which products they recommend.
It’s likely they sell some of the products at the pet salon, so they’ll be more than happy to point out the right ones for your dog.
If shopping for dog clippers on your own, be sure to check with a sales associate or by reading the information on the label that it’s the right style for your dog. Andis and Wahl are two of the most trusted brand names for dog clippers.
For cutting your dog’s hair at home, you’ll need other tools as well, such as straight scissors or curved scissors and thinning shears — to learn more, make sure to watch this video:
Can I Groom My Own Dog?
Grooming your own dog has many benefits, such as saving money, bonding with your dog, and knowing exactly what products are used on him and how he’s treated during the grooming process.
But if you’re going to groom your own dog, it’s extremely important that you’re thorough and do the job correctly. One of the most important things to remember when preparing to groom your own dog is that human products and dog products aren’t the same.
Not only are dog clippers and human clippers different, but dogs need their very own shampoos, brushes, nail trimmers, and ear cleaners too.
You may think you’re being clever and saving a few bucks by using human products on your dog, but really you could be putting your dog’s health and safety at risk. For example, human shampoos are formulated differently and can cause allergic reactions, dryness, itching, or worse.
That’s why you must invest in the correct products for your dog to keep him safe and healthy while grooming at home.
How Often Should I Groom My Dog?
As mentioned earlier, your dog needs to be washed and brushed and have his hair and nails trimmed and ears cleaned. You don’t have to do all these things at once, but you do need to do them all regularly.
When it comes to bathing your dog, you may be surprised to learn that less is more. Bathing too frequently can cause your dog’s skin to become itchy and irritated.
Dogs really only need to be bathed once every 2-6 months (unless, of course, they get exceptionally dirty and absolutely must bathe).
How frequently you brush your dog depends on the type of coat. If he has short hair, he may not need brushing at all (and no amount of brushing will stop or prevent the shedding of certain short-haired dogs, unfortunately).
A good brush once a week is sufficient for most coats, the exception being long, curly hair, which may need to be brushed once per day to keep from getting tangled and matted. However, always use a hairdryer and a comb after giving your dog a bath to dry the hair and remove any knots.
Most dogs should get a haircut every 6-8 weeks. However, this may vary depending on your dog’s breed, whether you like him fluffy or not, and how well you take care of his coat.
You should also trim your dog’s nails every 1-2 months. Pay attention to how quickly they grow out and be very, very careful when cutting dog nails.
Use the proper nail clippers and have a professional show you where to cut, otherwise, you may end up cutting past the quick, which is extremely painful and will probably mean your dog will never let you touch his nails again.
Dog ears only need to be cleaned if they’re dirty or if your dog has an ear infection, but you’ll want to be very careful when bathing him not to get water in his ears.
And don’t forget to brush your dog’s teeth every day, or at least a few times a week. Dental problems can lead to serious health issues in dogs and taking care of their teeth now can extend their life and save you a huge vet bill later.
Even if you brush your dog’s teeth daily, he will still need a professional cleaning every six months to a year.
Grooming your dog can be fun and rewarding, not to mention save you lots of money.
However, you have to know what you’re doing and use products and formulas designed for dogs. Also, be thorough in your grooming and groom on a schedule to keep your dog well maintained.