How to Groom a Dog's Face

Easy
10 - 20 Minutes
1 Month

Introduction

Even if you are comfortable trimming the rest of your pup's body, trimming around his face can still be a challenge you may not feel ready for. It can be even more challenging if your pup is not already comfortable with being groomed in the first place. 

The younger you start grooming your pup, especially around his face, the easier it will be for you to get used to his face being subjected to regular grooming. There are many smaller breeds and a few larger breeds that need to have the hair on their faces and around their eyes trimmed on a regular basis. 

Dog's Perspective

While your dog may like trying to see what's going on around him, he may not like the idea of your hands and a pair of shears being that close to his face. You need to be careful not to cut or nick his face or poke his eyes. Unless your pup is a poodle, you should trim his hair in the direction it flows naturally, which is typically from front to back. 

The Brush First Method

Effective
0 Votes
Slicker Brush
Scissors
Step
1
Clean-up time
Start by using a comb or brush to go over your pup's face. This will help remove any debris like food from his facial hair and groom it all in one direction.
Step
2
Trim under first
Start by pulling the hair under your pup's muzzle down gently. Then, using a pair of thinning shears, trim the hair to the desired length. Be careful here, as any hanging flesh is very easily cut. The shears you use should have round safety tips to reduce the risk of injuring your pup.
Step
3
Nose hairs
Okay so your pup doesn't actually have nose hairs, but you will need to trim any excess hair from his muzzle, including working all the way up to the inside and outside corner of his eyes and across the bridge of his nose.
Step
4
Around the eyes
Using a pair of thinning shears, brush the hair above his eyes forward and trim the hair back to the point at which your pup can easily see without looking through a hairy fringe. You can use your finger or a comb as a guide while trimming here .
Step
5
Finish up
Finish up by brushing his face and checking your work. If there are any long bits, this is the time to trim them back and leave your pup with a much cleaner, happier looking face he is sure to approve of the next time he sees himself in the mirror.
Recommend grooming method?

The Walk First Method

Effective
0 Votes
Slicker Brush
Scissors
Clipper
Step
1
Get out and walk
Before you settle in to groom your pup's face, take him for a nice long walk (30 to 45 minutes). This lets him go to the bathroom and burn off plenty of excess energy, which in turn, will help calm him down.
Step
2
Choose your grooming spot
Choose a small room you can use to keep your pup from running off, a grooming table with a leash, or a second person to help ensure your dog stays in place while you work.
Step
3
Brush time
Using a slicker brush, brush your pup's hair going in the direction his hair grows. Brush any hair back from around his eyes. The slicker brush is designed to help separate his hairs out and smooth them down. This will make it much easier for you to trim them.
Step
4
Clipping time
Start by placing the clippers on top of his head and work your way back from front to back. Follow this by clipping the hair on his muzzle, starting at his nose and working down and around the rest of his muzzle. Lift his head and clip under his chin and his neck.
Step
5
Finish up
Using shears, trim around your pup's eyes and after brushing his face, trim up any loose or long hairs. If necessary, trim the hair in and around his ears finishing up the job.
Recommend grooming method?

Caution & Considerations

  • Dull shears rip hair out, be sure to keep your shears sharp to reduce the risk of injury to your pup. 
  • Dull clipper blades also rip hair out rather than cutting it, keep the blades sharp at all times.
  • All shears you plan to use should be the safety type with rounded tips.
  • The skin around your pup's face is very thin and easily injured, take plenty of time when trimming under his jowls, under his chin, and around his eyes.
  • If you bathe your pup first, be sure his fur is completely dry before you try to use clippers as wet hair can jam the clippers, causing damage that may reduce their expected lifespan.
  • If your dog will not stand still for grooming, consider buying a grooming harness or having a second person there to help hold him in place.
  • Always give your pup time to get used to the shears and clippers to reduce the risk of starling him, which could end up in your pup or you being injured. 

Conclusion

Grooming your pup's face may seem challenging at first and your pup may never actually get to the point where he enjoys having it done. But with plenty of practice and patience, he should at least reach the point where he will stand still while you do it. Try to have fun and stick to a regular schedule, this will make the job a little easier for both of you. 

Success Stories and Grooming Questions

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