How to Brush a Dog's Hair

Easy
15 - 20 Minutes
1 Week

Introduction

Your dog knows it's his job to groom his coat, that's why he spends so much time licking himself. But a tongue can only do so much. This is where you come in--armed with your small arsenal of brushes, combs, and shears. While your pup's tongue is good at helping to keep himself clean and spread his natural oil, it won't brush put his coat or remove tangles and mats. This is your job and why there are so many different brushes, combs, and types of shears on the market. 

Dog's Perspective

You know, as far as your dog is concerned, he does a perfectly good job of grooming himself. He probably isn't too worried about being brushed on a regular basis. Yet, if you want your pup to look his best you need to learn how to brush his coat on a regular basis. Not only will it keep him looking good, it will give you time to check him over for fleas, ticks, mats, debris, injuries, and overall skin condition. 

The Top to Bottom Method

Effective
0 Votes
Slicker Brush
Scissors
Deshedder
Comb
Step
1
Start at the top
Using a slicker brush, work through the hair on top of your pup's head, down around his muzzle and under his chin. Be very gentle when brushing his ears, especially if he has really long hair on the outsides of his ears. If you encounter any mats, use a set of shears to cut them out.
Step
2
Sliding down
Work the brush gently down his neck and around to his chest. Make sure you are brushing all the way down to his skin to ensure you completely brush his hair and get out as much dirt and debris as you can.
Step
3
Corner to corner
Brush each of his legs working from top to bottom, inside and out. If your pup has hairy paws, brush them too, and give them a nice trim using sharp shears.
Step
4
Side to side
Put your pup on his side, this will allow you to brush half his back, one full side, and half his belly. Take your time around his genitals as this area is extremely sensitive. Have your pup roll over so you can do the same thing to the other side.
Step
5
And in the end
And in the end, the love you gave to the rest of his body can now be applied to his hindquarters. Brush his hips, the backs of his legs and the rest of his rump. Your pup should now look amazing, well done both of you!
Recommend grooming method?

The Simplest Method

Effective
0 Votes
Slicker Brush
Scissors
Dematter
Comb
Step
1
It all starts at his head
Brushing your pup's head requires a very gentle touch, as the skin here is sensitive, and your pup is likely to be a bit brush shy at first. Brush the top of his head and around his muzzle.
Step
2
Watch his ears
If your pup is one that has long hair, you should use your fingers to help keep from yanking on his hair while you brush the hair. If you see any mats or tangles, this is the time to cut them out with shears.
Step
3
Down the neck
Take a slicker brush and, if necessary, an undercoat rake to brush through the ruff on his neck. You can brush in any direction at first, but end up in the direction of growth for a nice smooth finish.
Step
4
Four legs to brush
If you have a short haired dog, chances are good his legs won't need to be brushed. But if you have a long-hair breed, start at the top and work your way gently through the hair on each leg. This will help remove tangles, dirt, and debris. If you see any mats, be sure to cut them out.
Step
5
Back and belly
Have him stand for you and brush his back and belly in the direction the hair grows. Be careful here as his belly and privates are very sensitive.
Step
6
And to the end
Finish up by using the slicker brush to go over his rear end. Again, take care around his genitals and anus. Take your time relax and let both of you enjoy this time together. Your pup will soon look forward to being brushed on a regular basis.
Recommend grooming method?

Caution & Considerations

  • Don't buy cheap brushes and be sure you have the right brushes for your particular pup.
  • Wash the brushes and combs after each use.
  • Use treats as rewards and to help keep your pup busy while you brush.
  • Make sure you give your pup plenty of time to get used to the tools, this will make things easier down the road.
  • Do NOT try to pull the mats out with a comb or brush, use a sharp pair of shears to snip them out.
  • Keep your shears sharp to avoid ripping hair out of your pup's skin.
  • Be sure your shears have round safety tips to avoid injuring your pup. 

Conclusion

The time you spend brushing your pup's coat is a great time for the two of you to bond. It also gives you time to look for scratches, injuries, dirt, debris, and pests. You should be brushing him daily, but you can get away with brushing him once a week, but no less. Keep it up and before you know it,  brushing time will be something you both look forward to. 

Success Stories and Grooming Questions

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