Grooming is often thought to be something only long-haired pets need. While long-hair is more prone to matting and messes (and therefore requires more time and attention), cats and dogs with all different hair lengths and types need regular grooming.
Regular grooming is important for more than just keeping your pet looking his best. It’s also vital for his health and overall well-being. Here are a few tips to help you keep your pet clean and healthy.
Brush Fur Regularly
Brushing is important for cats and dogs no matter if they have long hair or short hair. In addition to removing mats, regular brushing gets rid of dirt, pollen, dead hair, and other debris. It helps to stimulate the skin and distribute natural oils, keeping fur healthy and shiny. It also helps to reduce shedding, which is a bonus for helping to keep the house clean.
When you brush your pet, you also have the opportunity to look over his body to check for potential issues. Fleas, cuts, sore spots, and other issues can be spotted and dealt with promptly.
Unlike humans, pets don’t need a bath every day. Even so, they should still be bathed periodically. Several factors go into determining how frequently your pet needs a bath, including coat type, lifestyle, and general health.
Overbathing can strip away natural oils, leaving your pet with dry, itchy skin. Too few baths can leave your pet smelling rather unpleasant. According to the Canine Journal, dogs should typically be bathed every 3 months.
Cats should also be bathed periodically. While they are great self-groomers and can be much more difficult to get into a sink or tub, baths are just as important for felines as they are canines. In most cases, they don’t need to be bathed as often, but fur type, skin type, and lifestyle all play factors.
Like humans, pets require regular nail trimmings. Without trimming, the nails can grow too long and are susceptible to breaking, splintering and other serious problems, which can cause your pet a significant amount of pain.
How often you need to trim your pet’s nails depends on your pet. Some may need trimmings every 2 weeks while others can go as long as 6 weeks between trims. If your pet despises getting his nails trimmed, go easy. Forcing him is stressful for all parties involved. Instead, try to make your pet feel comfortable and relaxed and go at his pace. If he needs a break, take one and try again later.
Clean the Ears
All pets need to have their ears cleaned at least once a month. For those with heavier ears or those that flop over, you may need to clean them more frequently.
Cleaning your pet’s ears is necessary for removing bacteria, germs, wax, and other debris that can otherwise lead to a painful infection. You can purchase ear cleaning solutions at your local pet store or make your own at home using ingredients in your home, such as vinegar and hydrogen peroxide. Do not use cotton swabs deep in your pet’s ears. Instead, gently clean the outer ear and work your way toward the inner area.
Brush Teeth Daily
Like humans, your pets can develop serious dental issues without proper oral hygiene. Ideally, you should brush their teeth daily, but even a few times a week can make a major difference. Brushing is vital for removing plaque and bacteria, helping your pet to avoid problems like gum disease and tooth loss.
Keep Eyes Clean
You should check your pet’s eyes regularly and clean away any gunk and debris that has collected around them. Not only does regular eye cleaning keep your pet’s eyes clear, but it also gives you an opportunity to check for potential issues. As you clean his eyes, check for redness, swelling, cloudiness, and other signs of potential issues. If you do see something unusual, be sure to contact your vet right away.
Grooming your pets is vital for keeping them clean and healthy. Not only that, but it provides an excellent opportunity to strengthen your bond and bring you closer together.