Professional Dog Grooming Tips for Use at Home

Professional dog grooming requires schooling, and the best ones give your dog the perfect cut while getting him spotlessly clean. However, you can apply some of these tips at home for that "fresh from the groomer" look.


Before bathing your dog, brushing his coat to remove dead skin will produce a much shinier coat. For best results, brush from the skin out to the end of the hair without flipping your wrist. For dog's with long hair, divide it into sections to make sure you thoroughly brush each all the way to the skin, which will prevent dirt and mats from accumulating.

To get rid of mats, comb them out with a comb while your dog is soapy and wet. Give them shampoo a little time to soak in. If you give more than one shampoo, comb them out before the second rinse. This makes them easier to remove and less painful for your dog.


It's not a good idea to shave your dog's coat no matter how warm it is or how long his coat is. Your dog's coat is his natural insulation against both heat and cold, and shaving it makes it harder for him to regulate his temperature. It can also make him more susceptible to sunburn.

When shortening the coat, trim the top coat but not the undercoat for the best chance that it will grow back nicely. Clip in the direction of the hair growth, and trim in short, overlapping layers to avoid obvious scissor marks.

Ears and Nails

Dogs' ears need to be cleaned regularly to use yeast and bacteria. There are several natural products on the market, but in a pinch, light soap and water can work as well. Clean the outside of your dog's ear, but don't stick a Q-tip anywhere that you can't see.

It's important to remember to trim the hair in the ears as well. Many groomers recommend plucking it, but just a few at a time to make it less painful.

Dogs also need their nails trimmed every two to three weeks to prevent them from getting too long and causing pain. Trim only the tip of the nail to avoid cutting to the quick. If your dog's nails are long, trim more often rather than trying to cut off a larger amount.

Hold the nail on each side with your forefinger and thumb, separating it from the other toes. Hold the nail firmly to prevent your dog from squirming out of your hand. Even if you are nervous, use confidence to make your dog feel more comfortable.

In addition, trim the hair between the pads to prevent your dog from getting stickers and other objects stuck.

Proper grooming is an important part of pet ownership, and even if you can't afford to visit the groomer each week, you can have a clean, healthy-looking dog.