How to Groom a Dog's Sanitary Area

10 - 20 Minutes
4 Weeks


We’ve all seen it. That area we’d like to avoid but cannot be avoided. Your dog’s sanitary area needs to be cleaned and trimmed as well as the rest of his body. If this fur is left long, it could harbor bacteria and have goops of stuff left behind that you don’t want to look at. 

There are two areas you need to be sure you are keeping cleaned and maintained. Your dog’s underbelly is one area. Unlike his belly fur, the fur on the sanitary area should not be brushed. This is an extremely sensitive area and is often tangled. Clip this area with clippers. Don’t forget the backside as well. You can expect this area to be messy if left long. Keeping a healthy and trim potty cut is easy to do and will keep your dog nice and tidy.

Dog's Perspective

Remember the skin on your dog’s potty area is thin and sensitive. You may need to move your dog into a relaxed lying position for his tummy area and have him in a standing position to groom his rear end. Though he might feel anxious of these sensitive areas, keeping him in a safe position might help any anxieties

Caution & Considerations

  • Your dog's sanitary and potty areas have sensitive skin. No matter how you are grooming these areas, be slow, methodical, and gentle.
  • Never point scissors directly at your dog's skin. Try to keep them parallel to the skin whenever possible to avoid poking and puncturing your dog's skin.
  • When using clippers, try to avoid touching the clippers to the skin.
  • Small knots along your dog’s potty area are best removed with clippers unless they are up against the skin and, in that case, scissors may be required.
  • This is an area you are going to want to keep incredibly short and well-groomed because you want to try to keep this area as sanitary as possible.
  • Long fur in your dog's sanitary areas can become encrusted with fecal matter and bacteria.


Make this a paws-itive experience for your dog and be gentle, especially if you are new to giving your dog a potty cut. Mastering this incredible potty cut and keeping your dog's potty areas sanitary and tidy will give your dog a paw-some feeling of clean. In turn, he will feel doggone good and help keep your house clean as well.

Success Stories and Grooming Questions

Grooming Questions & Answers

Carin terrie
10 Years
0 found helpful
0 found helpful
Carin terrie
10 Years

This is what groomer did to my sweet dogs private wasnt even red when I got her home but 8 hours later this is how bad it looks!!! What can I do??

Darlene Stott
Darlene Stott
Dog Trainer and Groomer
0 Dog owners recommended

Hi Kelly, thank you for sending in your inquiry. It is hard to see the pictures clearly - even so, I would take Stella to the vet because if she is in pain or the skin is irritated, the vet can prescribe what is needed to soothe the redness. You don't want Stella to feel sore every time she moves. At the same time, you can get a recommendation for a new groomer. All the best to Stella.

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