How to Groom a Social Dog

Medium
15 - 30 Minutes
1 Week

Introduction

There is nothing quite like having a well-socialized dog like Joey. He seems to love just about everyone and everything. While some pups seem to be born this way, all dogs should be worked with until they are well-socialized around both people and other dogs. However, working with a social pup can be especially challenging when you are trying to groom him and all he wants to do is jump off the grooming table to say hi to another family member or a guest. You can either start out restraining him or you can work with him to calm him down enough to be groomed safely. 

Dog's Perspective

Even the most social of dogs, may not like being groomed. Between being placed on a grooming table and hooked to a safety leash and all of the tools you typically use for grooming, no one can blame Joey for being just a little nervous. One way to overcome this nervousness is to find ways to keep your pup's mind occupied while you work. 

The Busy Mind Method

Effective
0 Votes
Slicker Brush
Pin Brush
Step
1
Set up the room
Start by setting up the room you plan to use for grooming. Place the grooming table in the room such that you can move around it. Make sure your dog will be able to see the TV, add the tools, a new toy, and plenty of treats.
Step
2
Just can't wait to get on the road again
Going for a walk together achieves three things. First, it gets you both out in the fresh air for a little exercise, second, it gives your dog time to go to the bathroom, and third, it tires him out.
Step
3
Into the zone
Bring your pup into the room with you and put him up on the grooming table. Secure him with the safety restraint and let him get used to the table and the tools. Give him a treat and keep talking to him. The idea is to let him get used to the tools and to give him time to relax.
Step
4
Brush his face and head first
The reason for this is that this is the area most likely to make him nervous. Once you are done, give him a treat and then turn on his favorite TV show. Let him have the toy and continue brushing his chest and neck, then following the direction of hair growth, brush his back, sides, and rump. Be gentle around his rectum and tail as he is not likely to be happy being touched here.
Step
5
Going down
Lay your pup on his side so that you can brush his legs, paws, and belly. Once again, pay close attention to his genitals as the skin here is very thin and tender. Repeat this on a weekly basis and the two of you will soon be having fun instead of fighting each other.
Recommend grooming method?

The Day Spa Method

Effective
0 Votes
Slicker Brush
Shampoo
Pin Brush
Towel
Step
1
Talk to your vet
Start by talking to your vet. You need to know how often you can bathe your dog and what shampoos or soaps are recommended.
Step
2
A nice long stroll
Start out by taking your dog for a nice long walk, give him time to pee and burn off some of his exuberant energy. Make sure he is tired, but not exhausted as this can cause him physical harm.
Step
3
To the tub with you
Run a bath for your pup; keep the water at approximately the same temperature you would use to bathe a baby. Using the soap or shampoo you recently purchased, give your dog a nice rub down. Rinse thoroughly to remove soap or shampoo residue, dirt, dust, fleas, and anything else that happens to be caught up in his coat.
Step
4
The rub
Using a soft towel, dry your pup off and give him a treat.
Step
5
Places, please
Place your dog on the grooming table with a toy to keep him busy. Secure the safety strap and start to brush his head. Gently work your way around his neck, down the shoulders, along his back, down his sides, following the direction in which his hair is growing.
Step
6
Final touches
Have your dog lie down on his back so that you can brush the rest of his body, including his belly, legs, and paws. A final brushing once he is standing back up, a treat, and lots of praise for a job well done.
Recommend grooming method?

Caution & Considerations

  • Make sure you give your dog plenty of time to get used to the grooming table and the tools you plan to use.
  • Use the walk to tire him out, but don't get carried away as pushing him too far can have adverse consequences.
  • Keep plenty of treats on hand and don't be stingy with them.
  • Use a new toy, one that you can keep just for grooming sessions.
  • Check out the TV programs designed just for dogs, to keep your buddy occupied during grooming.
  • If you must use shears or clippers to trim his coat, be sure the blades are sharp. Keep the clipper blades oiled to reduce friction and heat that might burn the skin.
  • Take your time and let your pup set the pace, you will find this should make things go more smoothly for both of you. 

Conclusion

The biggest problem with trying to groom a very social dog like Joey, is that he is far more interested in socializing. Take your time letting him get used to being on the table and your touch with the brush and other tools. Keep talking to him and make the whole process a bonding experience for both of you. 

Success Stories and Grooming Questions

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