Salon de Amigos | Dog Grooming

Dog grooming FAQs


Is grooming and clipping the same thing?

Many pet owners can be confused about the difference between grooming and clipping. ‘Grooming’ covers a variety of procedures, including bathing, combing, brushing, nail clipping, plucking hair from ears, clipping and parasite control. Whereas ‘clipping’ on its own is generally only done to dogs whose hair continuously grows and is considered only one step in the grooming process. There are many benefits to grooming your pet including improved appearance (and smell), increased comfort and improved health. If you ask for "a full groom" on a breed that is not normally clipped, then this will not be a part of that process.


Do all dogs need to be groomed?

It is important that all dogs receive regular brushing and an occasional bath but it is extra important to keep your dog combed and brushed if he/she has long hair. Regular brushing not only keeps your dog's coat mat free but also improves skin health and circulation creating an attractive and healthy coat. Matted hair can easily cause skin problems and unnecessary discomfort to your pet. If neglected for too long this might eventually lead to a lengthy grooming session which is usually painful for your dog, and expensive for you.


Should I bath my dog before going to the groomer?

Unless the dog is bathed on the morning of the appointment, and is fully dried and brushed out to a fluffy finish, then there is little point - although if you are removing danglers from the rear, then that is always apppreciated. One of the worst problems that confront groomers is that of working on a dog that has been bathed without being brushed out completely. The result is a coat that is so firmly matted that clipping off short is the only solution. If bathing at home prior to grooming, always make sure to fully brush your dog's coat before and after the bath and ensure he/she is completely dry as well. If you are unable to get your dog fully brushed out, then it is definitely time to call in the professionals.


I can’t get my dog to behave when I brush him. How do you get him to stand still?

Dogs, like children, know that different rules apply to different situations, and are very quickly aware of the different boundaries that exist with different handlers. Although your dog may be ‘cheeky’ when you try to groom him/her at home, we find that most dogs tend to be on their best behaviour with groomers especially once they sense the confident touch that marks the experienced professional. Only very occasionally will a groomer encounter a dog that is unmanageable. This behaviour usually stems from a lack of regular grooming, and poor training, therefore it is important to continue with your dog's grooming day to day. Usually a dog that reacts badly to grooming at first will learn to accept and enjoy the process once he/she realises that nobody wants to hurt them.


My dog scratches all the time but I can’t see any fleas on him. What’s the problem?

Dogs scratch for all sorts of reasons, most commonly from having dry skin or allergies rather than fleas. Dry skin can be the result of excessive bathing, change in climate, nutritional deficiency, environmental factors, the wrong type of bathing products and more. Feel free to discuss the problem with your groomer.


Do I need to clip my dog’s nails?

Your dog's nails continually grow. The structure of many dog's feet is such that even frequent walking on hard surfaces will never wear them down. Without regular clipping, the nail can deform the foot, and either turn the toe to the side, or upwards.  Any such damage will become a permanent deformity to the foot. It is not unknown to curl around and grow right back into the skin. It is important to keep a check on them in order to maintain a good foot structure.  


How can I stop my dog from getting ear infections?

It is quite common for dogs with long, ‘floppy’ ears to suffer ear infections. This is due to a lack of air flow in the ear canal which causes excess moisture and heat and can lead to a yeast or bacterial infection. If your dog has exceptionally hairy ears, sometimes the removal of this hair will help open it up to air flow. Ear plucking is not something that we routinely do to every dog, but can be done if necessary. Signs of an ear infection include redness in the ear, a yeasty smell in the ear, continuous scratching of the ears and they may be tender to touch.


Why doesn’t my dog look as good as my neighbour’s dog?

The quality of a dog's coat will vary widely from animal to animal.  Even litter mates will have varying coat types. Your neighbour possibly has regular 4-8 week appointments with a groomer and keeps their dog well brushed between appointments. This kind of regular attention enables your groomer to devote more time and effort to beautifying your dog rather than to de-matting and trying to salvage a neglected coat.


Why is my dog always so tired after being groomed?

Going to the groomers is a big day out for your dog particularly when they are used to spending their day playing, snoozing and pottering around. It is a big day having a bath, drying off, playing with the staff and other dogs, having to concentrate and stand still and the excitement of the atmosphere in general. So enjoy that your dog is happy to have a good rest when they get home.


Sedation of dogs.

Under no circumstances do we, or will we, sedate or administer any medication to your dogs.


Anal gland expression. 

Should it be necessary for your dog to have it's anal glands expressed, we recommend that this be done at your normal vet visits.  It is not recommended that a dog have it's anal glands expressed as a routine exercise as it may well damage the muscles around the gland, and create more problems than you are trying to relieve. If you have been told that dogs should have this done regularly, then you have been misinformed.  


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