How Often Should I Groom My Dog?

Written by: Bojana Radulovic
The most common question in new dog owners is how often they should groom their dog. But, this is no simple question and answer depends on many different factors. Read on and discover what those factors are and how often you should groom your furry friend.

If you’re a proud dog owner, or you are thinking about welcoming a canine friend to your home it’s crucial to stay on top of grooming care, as you will have to keep your dog at first place healthy, and then clean. By doing so you will keep your home clean as well. It’s a win-win situation.

That being said, it’s important to acknowledge how important regular grooming actually is and furthermore, how your dog can benefit from it. Learn why it’s important to maintain your dog’s coat and even more important to do it properly.

Is Dog Grooming Necessary?

Simply said, yes. Grooming your dog comes with a number of benefits both for you and your dog. Besides that fact that your dog’s coat will look shinier than ever, there are a few additional key reasons why you should groom your dog regularly.

Just like humans, dogs need regular maintenance to keep their appearance clean and tidy. Grooming removes dead hair and dispenses the natural oil which keeps your pet’s coat and skin healthy beyond anything else. Regular grooming also improves your dog’s blood circulation.

Grooming is also a great way to first-handed explore your dog’s skin for any irregularities that may need attention. This will give you a good opportunity to examine if your dog has any skin bumps, small wounds that you wouldn’t notice otherwise, or even fleas.

Grooming is also a great way to bond with your dog. No matter how busy you are, if you adopt a regular grooming session once or twice a week, you will always have those 20 minutes to brush and cuddle with your dog. You can even consider it to be a way of communication between you and your dog.

Also, bear in mind if your dog is long-haired or if you are thinking about getting a dog that’s long-haired you should consider the fact that these breeds require a professional groomer due to their coat type. Especially if your Fido has an active outdoor spirit.

And last but least, dogs love attention. Therefore, they can benefit even emotionally from this routine.

Good to know: Start grooming your dog in early life, so he can get familiar with being handled in that manner.

How Often Should I Groom My Dog?

This is the most common question when it comes to grooming dog, especially in fresh dog-owners. Firstly, when we talk about grooming we are primarily talking about brushing your dog, while the other necessities when it comes to maintaining your canine will be explained further on. Secondly, the frequency of grooming your dog is strongly linked with your dog’s coat type.

In addition, there are a few more rules that you should take into consideration when it comes to grooming, but we will tackle them once we explain the difference in grooming different coat types properly.

Grooming Frequency: Dogs With Short Coats

Dogs of this breed are kind of wash-and-go dogs. They need occasional baths and minimal brushing. The biggest challenge with this type of coat can be heavy shedding. However, with regular brushing, you will probably remove a large amount of dead hair that will reduce the amount of hair in your home.

But if you are keen to low shedding dogs, maybe you should thing about getting one of the low-shedding dog breeds. One of the most common popular dogs with this kind of coat is Basenji .

Good to know: Bear in mind that nothing will stop shedding entirely, not even shaving your dog.

Grooming Frequency: Short-Haired Double-Coated Dogs

Although these dogs are short-haired you can expect some intense shedding seasonally. Shedding seasonally means that you can expect to work hard to groom-off lasts seasons hair so your canine can welcome the new season in its new coat.

During the between the seasons period, you should groom your dog more than usual. If you are not sure yet when this seasonal shedding starts, don’t worry, you will notice waves of hair on your floor on a daily level. So, if you share your life with Alaskan Klee Kai or Samoyed plan your grooming accordingly.

Good to know: Plan to groom your this type of coat every three months.

Grooming Frequency: Long-Coated Or Double-Coated Dogs

These dogs are known for having long hair all over their body, including their legs, feet, ears, bellies, and butts. Most of the owners choose to have dogs trimmed all year long, especially due to rainy days. In addition, long hair is prone to getting matted, specifically behind the ears and around the butt.

The most common representatives of this coat type is Bernese Mountain Dog. If your dog spends a significant amount of time outdoors, in your back yard, or loves to play hide-and-seek in small and hidden places the best advice would be to trim him regularly by groomer.

Good to know: Don’t try to cut mats out yourself, as you can cut your dog.

Grooming Frequency: Dogs With Thick Undercoats

There are dogs that make grooming even more fun, like breeds that come with a thick undercoat that has to be removed seasonally. In addition, this type of hair can lead to severe matting that needs to be shaved out. That’s why you should make sure to keep grooming on a regular level, as you don’t want to have your dog shaved.

If your canine is without its coat you are exposing him to potential sunburns and addititonal heat, especially if you are having Miniature Schnauzer or Siberian Husky.

Good to know: Detailed grooming should be done every three months.

Grooming Frequency: Silky-Coated Dogs

These dogs have a coat that grows constantly and must be trimmed periodically. Their coat can make short curls that can be tangled. Therefore, its crucial to visit a professional groomer every four to six weeks if you have a Cocker Spaniel or Setter, make sure to groom him on a regular basis as their coat grows continuously and must be trimmed periodically.

In addition, make a visit every four to six weeks to the professional groomer to prevent severe matting.

Grooming Frequency: Curly And Wavy Coats

This is the most prone breed to matting. Their hair should be brushed at least twice a week, any hair longer than an inch should be brushed daily. In order to prevent severe matting you should groom your Bichon Frise or Poodle every four to six weeks to prevent major matting, and brush on a daily level.

Good to know: The shorter the hair the longer your curly dog can go between appointments. However, this doesn’t mean that you should remove your dog’s hair entirely.

Coat TypeShort coatShort-haired Double-coatedLong-haired Double-coatedThick UndercoatsSilky-coatedCurly and Fluffy coats
Hair Trimming X Every 3 months Occasionally Every 3 months Every 4 – 6 weeks Every 3 – 4 weeks
Brushing 1 – 2 Times a week 1 – 2 Times a week Daily Daily Daily Daily
Bathing Once a month Every 8 – 10 weeks Every 6 – 8 weeks Once a month 2 – 3 Times a week Once or twice a week

Grooming Factors

Although your dog’s coat type is the primary factor when it comes to the frequency of grooming, there are other factors or questions that you should take into consideration when it comes to grooming your favorite canine.

Make sure that you answer these questions first and create the right grooming approach.

Good to know: Know that trimming your dog’s hair with human clippers isn’t recommended

What’s Your Canine Life Style?

People have a tendency to disregard this factor, although it should be the first one. For example, if your dog is extremely active and loves spending time outside and in the dirt, then the care of his coat is an imperative. If your pup is short-haired he is probably the practical dog that only needs regular bathing and grooming.

But, if your dog’s coat is long and he still likes spending time outside than make sure to have a proper grooming tool right on your hand all the time. On the other hand, if your canine is a couch potato, and he’s not a fan of mud or dirt, proper grooming routine will depend on his coat and its length.

How Fast Does Your Dogs Hair Grow?

Some breeds are more prone to hair growth than others. For example, hair growth is significant when it comes to Poodles, while that’s not the case with breeds like Spaniels. The chances are that your canines hair growth is highly linked with its breed.

If your dogs breed leans more toward Poodles you can expect growing between 8-10 weeks, and if it leans more toward Spaniels than you can expect to take care of his ears and feet in every 6 weeks.

Do You Have A Dogs Coat Style Preferences?

Just like every dog is different, there are no two owners that are identical. Moreover, each dog owner comes with specific preferences in how they like to see their dogs coat.

If you like to see your dog’s coat practical and short this will keep the fluff off for every 6-8 weeks. If you prefer you canine fluffy or in a certain style, and you trim it a bit, you can expect to reduce grooming to around 4-6 weeks.

How Old Is Your Dog?

This may sound like a strange question related to grooming, but age matters. Why? Modern grooming in a form that is known to us is not something that canines consider natural, especially puppies.

Puppies need to be introduced to grooming slowly and early so they can build up their confidence in the grooming process. Also, you shouldn’t groom your dog, especially not with a professional groomer, if your puppy hasn’t finished with its puppy vaccines.

Also, if your dog suffers from some medical condition like arthritis, you should go for what’s more practical to your dog and avoid fancy hairstyles and too frequent visits. All in all, this will mean less discomfort for them.

Does Your Dog Like Brushing?

This is important if your dog has long and beautiful hair. If your dog has short hair this is not an issue as with long-haired canines. The longer the hair, the more probable the mess.

Long hair can easily matt and once it starts to matt it’s very difficult and time-consuming to remove the matting. In addition, this can be rather uncomfortable for the dog. But, if your dog loves to be bath and brushed then you are set for full grooming every 4-6 weeks. Not to mention that skin allergies may occur under matts because of the dirt and debris collected in the matted hair. The worst thing about it is that you won’t be able to see the rash or skin reactions if you don’t prevent matting on time.

Matts can make the grooming experience more uncomfortable for dogs, which can lead to anxious behavior whenever you visit the groomer. Therefore it is important to get your dog used to brushing sessions from the early age. Always give your dog a treat if he’s been a good boy during brushing.

If your dog doesn’t like brushing, you need to gradually introduce this session as something that will be entertaining for both you and your dog. Think of it as bonding time and your dog will surely accept it soon.

If you are still not sure how much time your grooming your dog will consume, check top 10 lists of the hardest and the easiest breeds to groom.

10 Of The Hardest Breeds To Groom

Having a dog is such a wonderful experience. You get to be responsible toward a living being, to share your every day with a canine friend and to meet much more buddies along the way. But, most importantly you have the best friend in years to come no matter what.

But, this friend comes with not only a massive level of responsibility, but it comes with some real-life grooming skills.

So, if you are a proud owner of any of the following breed make sure that you prepare yourself for what it’s coming. Moreover, be ready to jump in with proper grooming tools.

  1. Newfoundland
  2. Old English Sheepdog
  3. Puli
  4. Maltese
  5. Cocker Spaniel
  6. Kerry Blue Terrier
  7. Pekingese
  8. Shih Tzu
  9. Yorkshire Terrier
  10. West Highland White Terrier

10 Of The Easiest Breeds To Groom

Long and falling coats are beautiful, especially on a sunny day when you get to show your dog’s silhouette in the doggy park. However, this beauty comes with a certain time consummation when it comes to maintaining their coat.

So, if you are not keen on spending long hours simply brushing your dog’s coat the chances are that you are more oriented toward fewer maintenance dogs. Furthermore, if you are not sure which breeds are easy to brush, check out these 10 easy to groom dogs.

  1. Azawakh
  2. American Pit Bull Terrier
  3. Basenji
  4. Beagle
  5. Chihuahua
  6. Boston Terrier
  7. Boxer
  8. Rat Terrier
  9. Dalmatian
  10. Weimaraner

How To Train Your Dog To Enjoy Grooming?

Training your dog to enjoy grooming is the number one step toward proper and regular grooming. Therefore, the best time to start preparing your dog for grooming is to start training him to love grooming as a puppy. And you can do it in 8 easy steps.

  1. Make him feel comfortable – teaching your puppy to be comfortable with grooming and moreover, with handling, in general, should be your number one goal. You don’t need a special strategy for this, it is enough to pet him and stroke on different body areas. Also, make sure that you reward him afterward. This way you will praise his calm behavior. Altogether, this will make your dog less likely to reach when you touch them in these areas while grooming.
  2. Introduce the brush – once your dog is used to being handled, you can introduce them to a brush. Make sure that you associate the ‘brush’ with only positive things, like treats. If your dog stays calm pet him.
  3. Start brushing – when your dog gets used to having the brush next to him, try brushing lightly when your dog is relaxed. Always reward him with treats.
  4. Keep the right direction – once your dog is comfortable with brush strokes in the direction of the hair growth you can do the stroke in the direction opposite hair growth. This will enable also a quick skin check.
  5. Keep it comfortable – keeping the brushing experience soothing and comfortable for your dog is imperative. If there are any mats, tangles or knots you may need to trim them. Be careful and avoid discomfort.
  6. You can stop brushing – if your dog seems uncomfortable, stop brushing and continue some other day. Make sure that you start with body areas that your dog is comfortable with, and build up from there.
  7. Observe your dog – watch your dog’s reaction and if he seems uncomfortable maybe you should think about changing your dog’s brush and make sure that it’s soft enough. Also, changing your brushing techniques might also help. If you are not sure about your grooming tools, you can check with professional groomer or veterinarian if you are operating with adequate tools.
  8. Keep it short – keep your grooming sessions short. You don’t want your dog to be overwhelmed. Make sure to praise your dog and reward him during the whole time.

Should I Have My Dog Groomed Professionally?

In general, pet owners prefer to groom their own pet, mostly due to the mutual bond that they can develop in those moments. However, there are some perks that come with using professional grooming services and they are usually seen in saving owners time and energy.

After all, it takes a significant amount of time and energy to groom a dog, especially when they are puppies (if they are fluffy, it makes the process even longer). It may also be more challenging to groom a dog with behavioral issues on your own.

Why You Should Have Your Dog Groomed Professionally – In A Nutshell

  • They will save you time – dog-grooming shops are spread locally and it should be easy for you to drop off your dog and pick him up later. Moreover, they fit your schedule, and you can schedule in advance.
  • The tools – they have the right tools when it comes to grooming your dog and making your dog’s coat perfect. Furthermore, they have adequate clippers and grooming table. Also, you will not have to do any additional cleaning once you pick up your canine.
  • They clean the mess – groomers will take care of cleaning anal glands, removing fleas, and all other things that others may found yucky.
  • Groomers are great with dogs – if your canine is a little bit anxious you won’t have to worry a lot, as in most cases groomers are great with handling dogs. They are even great with dealing with aggressive dogs, although it’s recommended to stay with groomer if your dog has aggression issues.

But, you should also know that it’s important to find the right groomer. The first step could be a recommendation from your friends, neighbors, veterinarian or even local breed club. If you are more keen to online search check this official AKC GroomerFinder

Other Dog’s Grooming Needs

Although grooming is mostly linked with brushing, there are few more body areas that you should address to have a fully shiny and happy dog. For more exact information on caring for your dog’s nails, ears, teeth, eyes, and paws, read on below.

How To Keep Dog’s Paws Healthy?

  • Watch your dog’s movement for any kind of limping.
  • Check feet and paws regularly for any sign of infection or wounds.
  • Make sure that extra hair between footpads is not matted.
  • Remove any junk around the paws, including grass seeds.
  • Wash or soft clean paws after each walk.

How To Keep Dog’s Nails Healthy?

  • Trim or grind nails regularly. Make sure that you trim just a small amount off the tip.
  • Choose proper clipper.
  • Don’t cut too short. It can lead to pain and bleeding.
  • Stay regular with walks, as daily exercise helps with keeping nails in good condition.
  • Talk to your veterinarian about proper nail trimming.

How To Keep Dog’s Ears Healthy?

  • First educate yourself on most common ear infections and common signs.
  • Look out for the symptoms such as rubbing ears along objects, sensitivity around the ear area, head shaking, ear discharge, or even a unpleasant odor.
  • Have regular veterinarian check-ups, and clean them when it’s needed.
  • If there are no signs of any ear troubles, you better let them be and not force use of any ear products.
  • If your canine has long and droopy ears, those ears that go over their ear openings, monitor them regularly.

How To Keep Dog’s Eyes Healthy?

  • Monitor dog’s eyes daily.
  • Healthy eyes are bright and clear. Anything different is a sign of an eye problem.
  • Learn the signs of an eye problem, such as redness.
  • If you notice any eye changes contact your vet.
  • If your dog has a long-hair around its eyes, trim it and prevent irritation.

How To Keep Dog’s Teeth Healthy?

  • Provide chew sweets daily.
  • Make sure that your dog has sufficient amount of chewing time ( with healthy chewing toys, not furniture and shoes).
  • Add a raw bone once or twice in a week or two. Always check with your veterinarian about raw meat introduction, including bones.
  • Check daily dogs gums by pulling the lip up.
  • Introduce vegetables and foods that are great in removing plaque from your dog’s teeth.

Tips On Grooming

Although grooming doesn’t require any unique or additional super skills, you need to know some basics. Furthermore, you just need to follow a few basic steps to make sure that you are on the right grooming path.

  • Start early – make sure that you introduce grooming to your dog while he is still a puppy.
  • Learn how your breed should look like – regardless if you or the professional groomer will do the grooming you need to know what the final outcome should be. After all, not all dogs should be looking like Poodles.
  • Choose the right clippers – make sure that you have the right tool. Don’t let clippers get too hot.
  • Keep it short – don’t let grooming last for to long. Also, don’t pull hair and move the brush in the right direction.
  • Know your dog’s coat – educate yourself before you start with the grooming. This is especially important if your dog comes with a long or curly hair.
  • Work with your dog – make this grooming time a unique opportunity for you two to bond. Also, make sure that you use these calming moments to examine your dogs skin and search for any sign of skin infection.

How Often Should I Groom My Dog – Key Takeaways

Grooming and brushing your dog should be done for a number of reasons – remove the dead skin and hair from the coat, remove the dirt from canine’s coat, to reduce shedding, and last but not least to keep your living area as clean as possible. After all, this is a great way to keep your dog’s coat healthy.

But before you step into a dog’s grooming adventure you should know your dog’s coat in the first place. Then, you should choose the right grooming tools and learn the frequency of grooming based on your dog’s coat hair. Furthermore, you can always go for professional support and schedule your dog’s treatment at the local groomer. After all, it will save you time and energy.

Nevertheless of the option that you choose, to do it by yourself or by a groomer, make sure that you make proper preparation and to make your dog feel comfortable with being handled. Everything else should be fun and enjoyment for your canine.