The Do’s and Don’ts of Grooming Your Older Dog

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The Do’s and Don’ts of Grooming Your Older Dog

Grooming is an essential part of your dog’s health and wellbeing, and is even more critical as they grow older. Often, underlying health conditions your senior pup may be susceptible to can be spotted by investigating the skin and coat. Lumps, bumps, growths and skin irritations can be revealed in a grooming session, either by yourself or by your Professional Groomer.

As your canine friend grows older, they tend to experience joint and muscle pain as well as mobility issues that can make grooming more of a challenge. Below, I’ve compiled my Do’s and Don’ts when grooming your senior pup, to ensure both you and your older furry friend is as comfortable and as happy as possible!

Michelle Walsh, Professional Dog Groomer

Michelle Walsh, Professional Dog Groomer

Michelle Walsh is a Professional Dog Groomer with over 10 years experience caring for puppies and dogs at Petmania Grooming Studios. She is also a Grooming Trainer for the Petmania Grooming Academy. Michelle is the human companion to Luna and is based a Petmania Grooming Studio in Santry.

What To Do When Grooming Your Senior Dog

  • DO watch for signs of discomfort or pain. Older dogs may not be able to stand as long they once could, so make sure to very slowly and carefully adjust to a more comfortable position.
  • DO be patient and take your time, and groom when your dog is feeling up for it—it’s best not to wake him from his afternoon nap!
  • DO inspect his skin and coat regularly. Older doggies are susceptible to skin and coat conditions so it’s essential he is checked from top to bottom. If you do notice anything unusual, make sure to contact your vet for assistance.
  • DO check your brushes and combs to make sure they are in good condition and not damaged. Broken or bent brush teeth can scratch the skin or cause coat breakage. If you’re uncertain to what type of brush or comb your dog needs, contact your local Petmania Grooming Studio and one of our Professional Groomers will be more than happy to assist you.
  • DO conduct a full body inspection when grooming your dog. Check his ears, eyes, mouth, sanitary area and his nails. Periodontal disease is very common in older dogs and if ignored, it can become very serious, so regular mouth and teeth inspections are important. Brush his teeth regularly with a dog-friendly toothbrush and toothpaste. Older dogs will also need their nails trimmed more often, so make you are staying on top of this; healthy nail lengths are important for dogs who have arthritis or joint problems.
  • DO reinforce good behaviour. Is your dog being a good boy or girl, staying still or not snapping? Reward with a treat and make the experience more enjoyable so they are looking forward to it next time.
senior dog chihuahua getting a bath in a grooming studio

What NOT To Do When Grooming Your Senior Dog

  • DON’T keep him in the grooming seat too long. It is more ideal to work on your dog for 10 minutes at a time, a few days a week than to expect him to endure longer grooming sessions.
  • DON’T ignore your dog’s mobility issues—if you notice them slipping and sliding in the bath or on the table when you’re grooming them, consider using a non-slip mat that will secure their footing.
  • DON’T move too quickly, especially if your dog has hearing or vision loss, as sudden movements may frighten or startle them.
  • DON’T ignore the weather—senior dogs can experience issues in extreme temperatures. If your dog’s hair is normally kept short but you notice he now shivers in cold weather, consider keeping to a longer hairstyle so your four legged friend can stay warmer.
  • DON’T forget to towel dry—a nice, warm towel after his bath and a gentle towel dry will help prevent chilling.
Have you got any more questions about your dog’s grooming routine? Or would you like to find out more about what we offer here in Petmania Grooming Studios? Please don’t hesitate to reach out and give your local store a call and one of our Professional Dog Groomers will be happy to help.

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