Grooming is essential for maintaining optimal health and well being of your pet. While there are many professional grooming centres operational today, grooming can also be done at home. For busy pet parents unable to spend much time with their dog, professional grooming is the better option.
While professional grooming might serve the purpose of pet parents with not much time to spare, grooming at home is for those who are budget-conscious. With a plethora of websites available offering a wide range of shampoos, conditioners, combs and brushes; selecting the most appropriate grooming essentials for your pet has perhaps never been so easy. Just click away, and get the products delivered right to your doorstep within a couple of days.
Grooming a Long-Haired Dog
Regular grooming is very important for all breeds. While dogs with short hair can be groomed once every week, dogs that have longer hair have to be usually groomed on an almost daily basis. Long haired dogs are more prone to matting and developing tangles. Also, as dirt and debris get trapped in their long hair, such dogs get dirtier much sooner as compared to their shorter haired companions. These debris and dirt particles can eventually lead to various infections and irritations, also causing an allergic reaction as well.
Among the most common long-haired dogs are:
- Yorkshire Terrier
- Afghan Hound
- Lhasa Apso
- Shih Tzu
While there are many other long haired dogs as well, the above-mentioned are comparatively more popular.
Executing the Perfect Haircut
When you decide to clip your dog’s hair, there are many things to keep in mind:
- Take due note of your reason for clipping – that is, whether the clipping is for summer or for styling – proceed accordingly. Most veterinarians are of the opinion that the coat of long haired dogs be left as it is in the summer months. Clipping hair too short might expose the skin to the natural elements. Long hair is said to provide insulation against the heat of the summer as well.
- Choose the right clippers or scissors. Understanding the difference between clippers and scissors is important here. Clippers are electronically operated and come equipped with the option of fitting different blades as per your dog’s specific requirements. Scissors, on the other hand, are non-electric and are just a pair of the conventional scissors that we use at home. While clippers are a better option for do-it-yourself grooming, scissors are handy when trimming delicate regions like around the muzzle and eyes.
- Select the most appropriate clippers as per your dog’s breed. Often, the box itself contains a list of the dog breeds that the clippers are ideal for.
- The blade for the clippers should be selected depending upon how long you wish to keep your dog’s hair. Remember, the lower the number of the blade, the longer hair you end up with. For example, while a Number 5 blade is used for leaving behind a quarter of the existing hair length, a Number 30 blade is used to leave behind 1/100 of the existing hair length. For pet parents wishing to achieve a summer look for their dogs, the ideal blade would be a Number 10. However, in case you have a long haired dog and you do not wish to clip off too much hair, a Number 5 or a Number 7 blade might be a better option.
- Clip excess hair from the paws and feet. For long haired dogs, clipping hair around the paws and feet is necessary so that they do not slip on hardboard floors.
- Remove excess hair from the tail. Too much hair here can lead to fecal matter getting trapped and causing infections later on.
- The muzzle and the area around the eyes should be clipped carefully, taking into account any sudden head movements of the dog.
While clipping your dog’s hair, leave behind at least half-an-inch of hair. Clipping too close to the skin is not advisable.
For long haired dogs, there are different cuts that are preferred for the summers. These include:
- The Puppy Cut. A popular cut for the summers, the Puppy Cut is clipping the hair uniformly all over the body, leaving behind 1-2 inches of hair. This is a low maintenance cut as it greatly reduced the need for daily brushing regimens.
- The Teddy Bear Cut. This cut is known for the cute teddy bear face that is created by trimming only the head on the head. Hair elsewhere on the body can be left at any length, depending upon the preference of the pet parent concerned.
- The Practical Top-Knot. Another popular haircut for dogs with long hair, the Top-Knot is achieved by gathering some of the hair on the head and securing with a clip or band, making a ponytail of sorts. Hair on the rest of the body can be cut to a uniform length.
- The Top-Knot for Show Cut. This is probably the highest maintenance cut that there can be for long haired dogs. In this cut, the hair is tied at the top, and left to grow long all over the body. While good to look at, a dog sporting this haircut needs to be brushed down up to many times a day.
For pet parents of dogs with long hair – such as the Lhasa Apso, Afghan Hound, Shih Tzu, Yorkshire Terrier – there are many different kinds of haircuts available to select from. The choice in this regard is mainly between practicality on one hand and style on the other.