How to Groom a Medium Haired Dog

Easy
15 - 30 Minutes
1 Week

Introduction

Is your pup's coat getting a bit on the shaggy side? Fed up with paying too much at the groomer's just to have them trim so little off you can't even tell they cut any at all? Fortunately, if she has one of those low maintenance, medium coats she'll only need to be brushed once a week and fully groomed once a month. Getting Fluffy to agree to being groomed at home is not going to be as hard as you think; it takes patience, perseverance, and a healthy supply of her favorite treats. 

Dog's Perspective

Most dogs tend to keep themselves groomed with tongue, teeth, and claws. They think they are doing a great job and don't mind the doggy odor. Your task, should you accept the responsibility, is to teach your dog that being fully groomed is a wonderful thing and to enjoy the process. 

The Weekly Brushing Method

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Slicker Brush
Scissors
Step
1
Gather the tools
For a medium haired dog, you need a slicker brush and a pair of shears.
Step
2
Pick your spot
Choose one room in the house where you can groom every week at approximately the same time. Familiarity breeds confidence, which in turn breeds comfort. Making grooming easier for both of you.
Step
3
Break out the brush
Getting your dog used to the brush you plan to use is a matter of holding it in your hand in front of her where she can sniff it, look at it, and get used to seeing it in your hand. Gently place the brush on her head and start slowly brushing her head, face, chin, and ears.
Step
4
Moving on
Continue brushing her starting with her neck and chest. Always brush in the direction in which the hair grows; not only will this help spread her natural oils more evenly throughout her coat, but it will help her coat lie flat. Brush her back and rump (be very gentle here), her tail, and take a break. Give her a treat and a moment to compose herself.
Step
5
Roll over
Have your pup roll over on her back, giving you access to her belly and legs. A good brush through here should finish the job. Check her paws and if necessary, use the shears to trim any excess hair between her pads back below the level of her pads. Do this on a weekly basis and she will soon come to love the experience.
Recommend grooming method?

The Monthly Bath Method

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Slicker Brush
Shampoo
Scissors
Nail Clipper
Nail File
Towel
Toothbrush
Step
1
Bath time
Start by running a tepid bath (baby bath temperature). Pop your pooch in the tub and using her favorite vet-approved shampoo, give her a good allover bath. Make sure you get all areas nice and clean. Rinse her thoroughly to remove the shampoo, dirt, debris, parasites, and anything else in her coat. Rub her down with a nice soft towel and then let her air dry for a while.
Step
2
Getting ready to work
Set out the brush, clippers, shears, toothbrush, toothpaste, and nail cutters you plan to use where your dog will be able to see them when you bring her into the room. Bring her in and let her see everything. Give her time to get used to them before you try and use them.
Step
3
The top half
Using a slicker brush, brush the face, head, neck, and ears. Use the shears to trim any long facial hairs. Trim the hair back from her eyes, paying close attention not to injure her eyes. Brush down her neck and chest, then follow the way her hair grows with the brush, going all the way to her rump and down her sides. If you see any hair that needs to be trimmed, use either the clippers or the shears to trim her coat to length. Step back frequently to keep an eye on your work.
Step
4
Bottom half
Have your dog roll over on her back so you can brush out her belly, legs, and paws. Using clippers and shears, trim her hair to length. Pay very close attention when you are trimming around her genitals so as not to injure her.
Step
5
Nails and teeth
Using either scissor style or guillotine style nail cutters, trim her nails back to the quick. Use a file to smooth them down, this will help keep her from scratching everyone and everything. Finish up brushing her teeth using a doggy toothbrush and dog toothpaste. Voila, one very beautiful pup and shined up and ready to go!
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Caution & Considerations

  • Never use human products such as shampoos, conditioners, and toothpaste¬†on your pup as they may contain ingredients known to be toxic to dogs.
  • Shears and clipper blades must be kept sharp or may injure your dog by pulling hair.
  • Oil the clipper blades to keep them cooled down, the heat can burn the skin.
  • Give your dog plenty of time to get used to the tools, even turn on the clippers so she can hear them run before you use them.
  • Use plenty of treats to reward along the way.
  • Always brush in the direction hair grows, this helps to reduce tangles, spread natural oils more thoroughly throughout the coat, and help hair to lie flat.¬†
  • Take your time and make it fun for both of you.

Conclusion

Grooming a medium haired dog is relatively simple. You should give a good brushing once a week and go all out on the fourth week by giving Fluffy the full spa treatment. Keep in mind you should be brushing her teeth daily, but at the very least do so every time you give her a bath. 

Success Stories and Grooming Questions

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