Some breeds are more predisposed to skin problems, however some problems are as a result of allergies, diet or sometimes the reason is difficult to discover and you are left with trying to deal with the problem. Your vet can help manage the symptoms if your pet is irritated with their skin, and often your pet can't tell you they are in pain or itchy, however their behaviour may change, for example becoming more irritable, or just looking unhappy and not themselves.
There are some things that you can do to help avoid skin problems - keep the coat groomed (see below for correct brushing), keep their coat clean, brushing, bathing, wash mud off after a walk and keep the coat matt free - matts can pull on the skin, eventually they hurt and can really irritate your pet. & the skin can become sore. You can buy medicated shampoo that will help with irritable skin, or your groomer can bath your pet should you not have the facilities.
Your pet will also benefit from regular flea treatments - many dogs and cats are allergic to their bites so it is vital to do what you can to keep their coat free from mites and fleas.
You can try alternative and complimentary treatments, to see if they are effective, some good results have been reported with aloe vera gel (please make sure this is pure), and also coconut oil is nourishing to the skin, again in its natural state.
The most effective treatment I have found for ongoing skin conditions are mud baths with dead sea mud - this is specifically for pets. I have tested this on a number of clients always with overwhelmingly positive results. This bath will thoroughly nourish and clean the skin leaving the skin and coat in super condition. Please see information on treatments for more details about this treatment.
Fleas can be irritating, especially when they get into your home, bedding and carpets. Both dogs and cats carry dog fleas, passing them on.
There are several alternatives to preventing them. One is to regularly treat your pet with a flea preventative method, usually purchased online or via your vet.
There are also flea baths that are offered by us and other groomers, you could also purchase flea shampoo from pet retailers or vet supplies.
Another is to use a more natural method of preventing these little critters. We offer a dry shampoo that will repel fleas and ticks. This is safe to put on the dogs coat directly and on carpets and bedding. It is brushed onto your dog backwards. Please see our selling page for more details.
Why groom in between visits to the salon?
Brushing enhances the coat, removes dead hair and keeps skin healthy. It also keeps tangles and matts at bay, saving your groomer time and therefore you money when s/he goes to the grooming salon.
Are you brushing your dog correctly?
There are different types of dog coats and for each one there is a way to brush, and equipment that suits the coat.
For very short haired breeds such as Dalmation or Staffordshire Bull Terrier, a popular tool is the rubber palm pad ('Zoom Groom' for example). This aids shedding and used properly will draw the oils to the top coat making it healthy and giving a gleam to the coat. Circular motions are used when using this tool, this should be done until drawing a brush through does not pull any hair out.
Double coated breeds such as German Shepherd, Golden Retriever or Collie coats normally require intensive work. A good tool to use is a grooming ‘rake’ for the very thick areas such as around the neck or tail. A good slicker brush will be essential for general brushing. Another tool is the 'Coat King'. These vary in size depending on the coat type of your dog. For example, the German Shepherd will normally require a large coat king. These are relatively inexpensive and can be purchased in many good stores and online.
Wool Coats such as the poodle coat tend to knot up quite easily, so regular brushing through with a slicker brush followed with a wide toothed comb will help enormously.
Silk Coats such as Yorkshire Terrier will benefit from brushing through with a slicker followed by combing. Any knots can be teased out with a matt breaker.
A good method of grooming through all coats is to part the hair at the roots starting from the neck and going through it systematically, brushing out knots, old hair and any debris.
A word of warning…. Ensure that you use the brushes and combs correctly. It is easy to burn the skin with a slicker brush if you brush it against the skin continually. It is also easy to scrape skin with a comb.
Remember… grooming your dog is a necessary task, but not all dogs enjoy it, so make it easier for them with treats, giving lots of breaks & spacing out grooming times. Regular attendance at the grooming salon will compliment your care and keep the coat in order.