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Ignorant question: What is the grooming order for a dog?

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  • Ignorant question: What is the grooming order for a dog?

    Before I call my groomer and display my ignorance, I'm tossing this question out to you folks:

    Does it go Bath > Brushing > Drying or Bath > Drying > Brushing? Or does the bath come in between?

    I'm asking because my poor Big Fuzzy Dog has such bad arthritis that it's really hard for him to stand in one position for too long, even with a rimadyl or deramaxx. He seriously needs a bath and the good brushing/mat removal that the groomers do. If the drying comes at the end, I would have them just towel him off and skip the blowdrying so he could go lie down.

    If the brushing comes AFTER the drying, would a groomer be able to do the brushing part while he's wet anyway?

    I realize that I'm generalizing here, but as is often the case when I generalize, I don't care. ~ Dave Barry

  • #2
    In my shop unless the dog is matted, the bath is first...it helps loosen the dead coat and makes it much easier to blow out..I shampoo twice, condition..If the dog has infirmities either due to age or health, after the bath, they are put in a crate on thick towels and allowed to drip dry a bit..Then they are dried, then rested again, then brushed out, and then trimmed or clipped..Some older infirm dogs I do, take a pain pill like Tramadol about one hour before coming in, to make it easier for them. Of course this is prescribed by their vet.If your groomer is good and cares about your dog, if you ask for concessions to be made due to infirmities, they will happily accomodate...you may need to be flexible..for example if it is a large infirm dog, I really try not to do those on a Saturday when the place is nuts...it makes it harder to keep the old ones relaxed and rested enoungh..I prefer to do them first thing in the morning as well..its quieter and I can allow more time before the next dog comes in..I stagger my dogs throughout the day...I do not like a bunch in at one time..too stressful and noisy for the dogs and me too..Don't hesitate to ask questions when you make your appt..GOOD groomers are happy to take the time to answer your questions and address your concerns. Hope this helps.

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    • #3
      Can you get a comb, and matt remover, and do a little each day, to get the mats removed. It'll make it much easier on him. Or have you considered shaving (if he is not a husky)?

      Comment


      • #4
        As we teach in our household manners and puppy classes, grooming your dog, big or little, fuzzy or slick, should be a sensible part of your day, like brushing your hair.

        It is a bonding time, where you relax your dog and go over it so you know when something is off.

        Take as long as you want, your dog likes or just a half a minute, every day a bit here, tomorrow there, next day just rubbing it's head, whatever routine fits you both.

        You can start that any time, even now with an old dog.

        For major grooming like bathing and trimming, a professional groomer that is good with the dogs is a great way to go, as you are doing, but you can do a bit every day yourself so that won't have to take as long.

        The groomers try not to stress or tire the dogs, so they don't resent it.

        When I was taking care of Grandma's three little poodles, I would do a bit, wait, then do more and with each of them, it took long, with all the brushing and trimming.
        Especially as they got older, I did them more often and kept them very short, so it didn't take so long.

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        • #5
          Everyone has their own way of doing things. In my shop we've got 8 groomers and 8 ways of doing things, but we all get to the same destination. Best to just call your groomer and discuss this with him or her.

          Personally...I would never just towel dry a big 'n hairy as I get almost all of the loose hair and matted undercoat out in the tub with the velocity dryer. Skipping the drying means the dog is going to have to stand on my table MUCH longer than usual while I brush, brush, and brush all the stuff the dryer could have taken care of more quickly and easily.

          With old dogs I let him sit or lay down unless they HAVE to be standing. I can get quite a bit done with the dog sitting or laying down.

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          • #6
            I do not towel dry...I let them rest a bit on towels after the bath before I blow them out..just in case my post came out wrong.

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            • #7
              Our dog club has several professional groomers and when they give talks, each one does things a bit different, but most do some initial brushing, then bathe, some have cage driers, some hand dry as they start brushing.

              I think it depends on the dog, the kind of hair it has and how long it was since last groomed.
              A big, hairy, partly matted dog blowing coat twice a year and that the only time groomed would be handled differently than a slick haired dog just in for a bath so it smells good.

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              • #8
                My miniature schnauzer would mat when he got wet. Therefore, when I got him at the pound and he had a long show clip, and he was really smelly I gave him a bath and he matted badly. He was very good for his bath too. Then after the afternoon vet appointment I trimmed the worst with scissors, and he was wonderful for that too. I'm sure the groomer I took him to that weekend was appalled, but it did get rid of his mats.

                Since my dog was kept with short body and regular Schnauzer bearded face I just would watch for mats on his body (especially the arm pits and beard) and trim them with hand clippers if I found any. When he got older the mat problem seemed to get worse for his beard, and I was clipping him myself by then, so I kept the beard under his chin short (kind of flat and even like a docked tail) so I didn't have to worry about beard mats.

                I usually trimmed first, and then bathed because I didn't want any mats to develop (his longer fur seemed to mat easily when he got wet) and cause him any pain. And I just air dryed him.

                I think it depends on what type of dog you have, how long their coat is kept, and the groomer's preference. As others have said, I think you need to find someone who understands older dogs and their needs and will take the time he needs to be comfortable.
                You can't fix stupid-Ron White

                Comment

                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  gaitedincali, that's very helpful, thank you.

                  I don't mean that he has huge mats all over! He gets shaved for the summer and is now getting fuzzy again for the winter. It's the just time of year for the post-summer professional grooming. I'm certainly able to give him a bath in the tub, but I never am able to get them as "clean" as a real grooming.

                  I appreciate the suggestions about inquiring if he can rest in between, or even lie down for some of the brushing.
                  I realize that I'm generalizing here, but as is often the case when I generalize, I don't care. ~ Dave Barry

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                  • #10
                    One other reason I clipped first and bathed second was that it was easier to wash less fur, and easier to rinse. One thing I loved for the in-between groomer trips, or when the dog got smelly from rolling was the hand held shower attachment which makes bathing the dog, or washing the tub or shower much easier. That is the one thing I hated about dog bathing (I had it down to a science, and with the right prep-tub mat, good no slip bath mat, a couple of nice, thick towels, and the soap right there it was really easy-and my boy was a wonderful about clipping and bathing) was having to make sure you get every single last bit of soap out or else they get very itchy.
                    You can't fix stupid-Ron White

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                    • #11
                      I groom and the way I do it is to schedule two dogs at the same time. I'll bathe one, blast it off with the dryer and put it back in the kennel with a kennel dryer (our salon just has ones that move room temp air so they won't be cooking any dogs no matter how long you leave them on). Then I bathe and blast off the other dog. Then I get the first dog back out and dry it while the other one sits behind a kennel dryer. Then I dry the second dog. Then I groom the first dog. Then groom the second dog. That way both dogs are getting plenty of breaks and can lie down or take a nap if they want.

                      If I have a large, older dog I generally pull a couple of kennel grates out and have the dog sit or lie down on them while I dry them (grates keep the dog out of the water I'm blasting off him). That way they can basically rest while I dry them with the force dryer. I've groomed dogs with them lying down a good 80% of the groom, only standing up when its absolutely necessary.

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                      • #12
                        My groomer back in MD trained my arthritic collie to lie down for grooming and used a kennel dryer until she was damp dry.

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                        • #13
                          We usually do Bath> drying in kennel with cage dryer> then brush out. De mattine happens either before or during the bath. Most groomers worth their salt should be fully capable of adjusting the "routine" to fit an individuals needs, and if they can't then I would find another one anyway. Plus a dog can be hand blown dry while laying if needed, one side at a time!

                          Katherine
                          Vet Tech
                          You can't fix stupid.... but you can breed it!

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