How to Groom a Small Dog's Nose

Medium
15 - 20 Minutes
1 Month

Introduction

While you might be able to blow your own nose and keep it clean, your dog can't do this for himself. For the guys out there, trimming your mustache is a pretty simply five-minute process. Your dog can't shave or trim his mustache. Nope!  He counts on you to take care of things like this. If you don’t, it could lead to a host of personal and medical problems. It becomes even more important if your poor pup comes down with a puppy cold. If you don't work to keep his nose trimmed and clean, he could easily end up with a bacterial infection. 

Dog's Perspective

Imagine if you had a mustache that started growing into your nose. Now take this one step further--the hairs start tickling and irritating your nose to the point where all you want to do is scratch at it. One way to know that your pup's nose needs to be trimmed is you may catch him rubbing his muzzle on the carpet or furniture in your home. It's up to you to do something about it. 

The Soft Wash Method

Effective
0 Votes
Shampoo
Scissors
Comb
Towel
Step
1
Get ready
Prepare a small bowl of warm soapy water. Be sure you are using a soap that has been vet approved. Those made for humans can be toxic to dogs.
Step
2
Gentle, if you please
Gently wash your pup's nose, taking care of his nose in much the same way as you would your own when you have a nasty cold. Your pup's nose is extremely sensitive. If there are any large buildups, use the washcloth to soak it for a few minutes and soften it up, then gently remove it. Rinse the soap completely off your pup's face to avoid any risk of irritation.
Step
3
Trim time
Using a pair of very sharp shears (use safety shears) gently trim the hair around your pup's nostrils and muzzle all the way back to his eyes. Cut the hair back to the point at which it will no longer irritate his nose.
Step
4
Clean the inside
Cleaning the outside of his nose is only half the job. Next up: cleaning the inside of his nostrils. If your pup has a cold (and sometimes if he doesn't) there may a buildup of crud. Use a warm, wet washcloth to soak it and then use your cloth or fingers to gently remove the material.
Step
5
Let him know he's a good boy
Once you are all done, and your little guy's nose looks its very best, be sure to praise him and give him a treat. The more you do this, the easier it will become for both of you.
Recommend grooming method?

The Tire Him Out First Method

Effective
0 Votes
Slicker Brush
Scissors
Comb
Clipper
Step
1
Get your pup ready
If your pup tends to be a little nose shy, why not start out with a dog that is too tired to be fussy. Take your little dog for a nice 30 to 45-minute walk before you try to groom his nose. Not only will this tire him out and calm him down, it will give him time to pee or poop so that he has no reason to fuss.
Step
2
Use restraints
If your pup is already used to being groomed, you can skip this step. If not, you can use a grooming table with built-in restraints to keep him under control while you are working on his snout.
Step
3
A good brush up
Use a slicker brush or comb to work through the hair around his nose. This will help remove food, dirt, debris, tangles, mats and anything else stuck in your pup's facial hair. Start by brushing in the direction of hair growth and then brush the hair forward to trim it.
Step
4
How short
Decide how short you want his facial hair to be when you are done. You can use shears to cut the hair or clippers if your pup will tolerate them. You should start with a slightly longer cut, as you can always cut his hair shorter, but you can't cut it longer.
Step
5
On the bridge
Starting at the bridge of his nose, cut the hair working forward and then down and around his nose, chin, and jowls. Lift his chin so you can get at the long hairs under there if needed and then brush his face to make sure you trimmed it level all the way around. Finally, use a warm wet washcloth to give his face a good cleaning and voila, you are done!
Recommend grooming method?

Caution & Considerations

  • You should never scrub hard on your pup's nose as this area is easily damaged.
  • If the skin on his nose is cracked and damaged, be sure to take him in to see his vet.
  • Be sure to use safety shears with blunt tips to avoid injuring your pup.
  • Be sure any soap or shampoo you use is intended for use on dogs. Products made for humans are often toxic to dogs.
  • If you notice the crusty buildup is heavy or hasn't gone away in a couple of weeks, take your pup in to see his vet.
  • If the buildup is extremely heavy, you may want to let the vet remove it.
  • Be sure to reward your pup for behaving during the grooming process. 

Conclusion

A good healthy nose is very important to your pup's overall health. He uses his nose just as much as you use your eyes. It is vital that you keep it clean and keep the hair trimmed back from it. Be gentle and patient with your pup, he might not appreciate it at first, but in time he will come to love having his face groomed on a regular basis. 

Success Stories and Grooming Questions

Book me a walkiee?
Pweeeze!