How to Trim Dog Eyelashes

Medium
10 - 20 Minutes
6 Weeks

Introduction

Some dogs have the cutest longest eyelashes you've ever seen. If you happen to have one of those sweet little pups, congratulations! If you can keep them long and they don't bother your dog but enhance that sweet little face, you still need to care for them and keep them trimmed. Some breeds, however, have eyelashes that continue to grow but cause problems. These are the dogs who will want their eyelashes trimmed. If not cared for, eyelashes can sometimes turn into the eye, causing scratches and irritation on the cornea. Whether you need to keep your dog's eyelashes short or whether you want to keep them long and flowing down their face, they still may need to be trimmed.

Dog's Perspective

Your dog is probably going to be very cautious about you being close to his eyes, especially with a sharp blade such as scissors. First, get your dog used to the look and the sound of your scissors before you put them directly near your dog's eyes. This will help build his trust with you and the object in your hands. Offer your dog treats throughout trimming and certainly at the end to make him feel better about the process.

The Quick and Easy Method

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Scissors
Comb
Step
1
Hold your dog
If your dog is small enough to hold tightly with one arm, secure him and his head before getting started. If you cannot safely secure your dog in your arm, use a partner or harness your pup’s head so he does not move.
Step
2
Wipe
With a soft, wet cloth, wipe out any crusty debris from your dog’s eyelashes. This will be necessary to separate the lashes.
Step
3
Comb
Use an eyebrow comb to gently pull the eyelashes forward and separate them. Try to take this slow so you are not pulling the eyelashes out.
Step
4
Trim
Start with short scissors and trim the eyelashes from the outside corner of one eye, pointing the scissors toward your dog’s nose.
Step
5
Movement
If your pup moves at all, pull the scissors away from his eyes to avoid injury. Keep your dog steady before trying again.
Step
6
Repeat
Repeat this trim with the other eye, starting on the outside corner.
Step
7
Comb again
Use the eyebrow brush to comb the eyelashes again. Take a good look at the lashes to ensure they are even and the length is what you’d like or at least short enough so they do not turn into the eyes.
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The Long and Luscious Method

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Scissors
Comb
Step
1
Length
Some breeds, such as Shih Tzus, look super cute with long lashes, and these breeds can grow their lashes as long as their beards. It’s up to you as to just how long you’d like these luscious lashes to be.
Step
2
Comb
Once your dog’s face is groomed and smooth, comb out the eyelashes with a fine tooth comb.
Step
3
Position comb
Place the comb at the length you’d like to cut.
Step
4
Scissors
Place your scissors along the outside of the eye and use the comb to keep them away from the dog’s eyes. Cut slowly across to the length you’d like. Long, luscious lashes may look best angled with the outside corners longer than the inside.
Step
5
Dust off
Use a clean dusting brush to brush off any excess lashes left over from cutting. Removing these will help to keep any loose lashes out of your dog’s eyes.
Recommend grooming method?

Caution & Considerations

  • Besides keeping a tidy look around your dog’s eyes, trimming your dog’s eyelashes is important for several breeds because they can become so long they can turn and enter the eye, causing discomfort or pain.
  • Some breeds, such as Shih Tzus, can have long eyelashes that don't cause any harm to the eyes. Be careful while they are growing and watch them so they don't turn in towards the eye.
  •  If your dog has long eyelashes and you want to keep them long, be sure to brush them out while you are grooming to keep any gunk, dirt, or debris out of your dog's eyes.
  •  If your dog has eyelashes that are constantly turning inward toward your dog's eyes, see your veterinarian for a checkup. Though an occasional eyelash in your dog's eye is normal, a constant turning of the eyelashes, especially in one area, is not always normal.
  •  An eyebrow brush or a clean eyelash brush works great on your dog's eyelashes.
  •  Consider having a partner hold your dog's head while you are grooming the eyelashes. It will ensure the dog doesn't flinch or jerk his head around causing an injury.
  • You may need to trim your dog's eyelashes with every grooming, however, they also may not require a trim with each bath or cut. 

Conclusion

Your dog will be batting his beautiful lashes, whether left long and luscious or short and sweet, at anyone who looks his way. If your dog has been fur-tunate enough to be born with luscious lashes, keep them long and well cared for, but watch them closely so they do not turn inward towards the eye. Your dog can be best in show with beautiful lashes, short or long.

Success Stories and Grooming Questions

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