With more of us deciding to buy and adopt dogs to extend our families, the need for professional dog groomers is constantly on the rise. While some breeds such as Labradors and Bulldogs can be managed at home, bringing dogs of any breed to a professional groomer has lots of benefits.
The main reason people use professional grooming services is the obvious - to look after their dog’s coat. Especially high maintenance breeds such as Poodles and Poodle crosses (Labradoodle, Cockapoo etc) require regular grooming at home and at a salon to keep the coat healthy and tangle free. If left alone, most dog coats do end up getting matted and that will cause a dog pain and discomfort. Matting can also cause skin infections and restrict blood flow, so keeping to a regular grooming schedule is vital. Dogs can (and should) start visiting a grooming salon as soon as they’ve had their full set of puppy jabs.
Visiting a groomer regularly also gives dog owners the chance to learn about correct brushing techniques, products, and tools. Your groomer is going to be more than happy to talk through all the different ways to keep on top of your dog’s coat between visits to the salon - after all, we get trained to create beautiful haircuts on your dog and always feel sad when a dog comes in matted. Improper coat care can also be classed as neglect, as under the Animal Welfare Act all animals should be free of unnecessary pain and discomfort.
Regular handling by someone who isn’t a part of your dog’s “pack” gets them used to being touched. This is also essential for vet’s visits, which are often much more infrequent as trips to a groomer. The environment at a vet practice is very similar to a groomer - your dog stands on a weird high platform while being touched all over and may also have to briefly interact with other dogs on the premises. Your dog being used to handling by several other people also means that they are more “bomb proof” when approached by strangers on walks or in the dog’s own home.
As mentioned above, your dog is less likely to visit a vet as often as a groomer. Most dogs tend to go to a groomer every 6-8 weeks, which means that your groomer will be able to notice any changes in your dog’s health very quickly. Groomers can’t diagnose anything medical, but can point out any new lumps, bumps and wounds to owners and recommend seeing a vet. Your groomer is also very quick to spot parasites such as fleas and ticks, which may go unnoticed by dog owners. Groomers are equipped to deal with most common parasites during a grooming appointment, but further treatment may be required at home.
When a dog comes to a groomer, your groomer has their undivided attention on your dog for the duration of the appointment. Groomers dedicate their working day to make sure your dog goes home looking amazing, and this means a high-quality finish regardless of the breed of your dog. Smooth haired dogs like Labradors and Bulldogs and double coated dogs like Shepherds and Collies receive a thorough wash and de-shed (removing old undercoat that is shedding), which means less loose hair in your home and the clean-up is left to the groomers. Most of us have busy lives at home, so being able to dedicate up to a few hours to washing and brushing your dog may be difficult.
Dogs that require a haircut are clipped and scissored with care. Groomers spend a long time learning how to use all this sharp equipment safely while handling a moving target, while creating beautiful trims that make your dog’s look incredible.