Two well-groomed dogs with bandanas are pictured on a porch.

Dogs prefer the feeling of being clean, just like people, but your furry friend will need your help to stay looking fresh. All dogs should have a consistent grooming schedule, whether that be once a month, bi-weekly, or even weekly. Depending on your dog’s breed, they’ll need more or less attention from a professional groomer. 

Taking your dog to see a trained dog groomer will ensure that they are receiving thorough treatment, whereas when you bathe at home you may not have all of the same tools and resources. A dog groomer is trained to handle all different types of situations so whether it is your dog’s first bath or their monthly appointment, they can take care of your pup.   

How Does a Dog Benefit From A Consistent Professional Grooming Schedule?

More so than for their good looks, a visit to the groomer can also be essential for your dog’s health in the following ways.

1. Good Way To Monitor General Health

A consistent grooming schedule is a productive way of monitoring your pet’s well-being. 

Skin is the largest organ a dog has and analyzing it can provide useful insights into their current health. A dog’s coat can tell you how they are retaining nutrients, if they are dehydrated, and more. In fact, studies show that 25-30% of the protein a dog retains goes to nourish their skin and coat. A healthy pup starts with a healthy coat. 

A trained dog groomer will know what alarming signs to look for when assessing the condition of your pup’s coat. They can then offer a professional opinion about what your next steps should be: special shampoo, supplement, or even a vet visit.     

 2. Parasite Prevention 

Even though they are sometimes microscopically small, fleas, ticks, and other external parasites can severely decrease a dog’s overall quality of life. 

While you should never take your dog to the groomer with a known infestation, a regular grooming schedule can prevent the beginnings of one. Your groomer will be able to catch — and sometimes even kill — early signs of an infested coat.

Parasite removal may be a bothersome task, but it is essential to have a strong prevention plan. It can be difficult to see these irritating critters and even more challenging to remove them from the dog’s coat and dispose of them, but a dog groomer will have specialized tools for efficient removal. 

For example, fleas are notoriously hard to kill by squishing or crushing, so instead, the groomer may collect the fleas in a comb and submerge them in water or a parasite solution. 

Many people have common misconceptions about killing ticks, too. While crushing the head of a tick may be an effective way to kill it, crushing the parasite will increase the risk of releasing tick borne diseases. Instead, a dog groomer may collect the ticks in a contained dish and seal them in a ziploc bag filled with alcohol.  

3. Eliminates Unwanted ‘Dog’ Odor

Dogs may always look cute, but the same can’t be said for their smell. 

Your pup will carry their outdoor adventures with them through the odor of their coat, and that smell may stick to other surfaces around the house. Dog odor clings to clothes and hair, so it may be traveling with you on your clothes, too. 

Consistent dog baths and grooming treatments can help get rid of any stubborn dog smell. Proper scrubbing brushes and shampoo can loosen dirt buildup and neutralize bad odors, and a professional’s help can prevent the unwanted smell from transferring onto you or your bathroom.  

4. Prevents Fur From Matting

Imagine what would happen if you didn’t comb your hair for a month — or even longer. Just like human hair, a dog’s fur should be brushed frequently. 

Depending on their breed, some dogs may require a simple brushing every day. Short-haired breeds like pit bulls won’t require as much maintenance to their coat, but a consistent bathing schedule will benefit all dogs regardless of breed. 

A dog’s fur will matt when left unbrushed for too long. Matting is when the fur clumps and tangles together, leaving thick knots of hair in the fur. Because these knots are so close to the base of the hair follicle, they can pull at the skin causing irritation and eventually bleeding. Skin lesions may form on dogs who have severe cases of matting, and the condition can be extremely painful. Treatment involves detangling and even shaving the area in some cases. 

5. Reduces Unwanted Shedding 

Your dog will grow thicker layers of fur to protect themselves against the cold and then they’ll shed it all out around spring. As the seasons change, so will the feeling of your dog’s coat. 

A consistent grooming schedule can reduce the level of shed fur that floats around your home by removing the undercoat. This will improve the overall skin/coat health, resulting in less fallout. Your dog’s groomer may also use specialized products to strengthen and nourish fur, which can be beneficial against shedding.  

The type of brush that you use on your dog will make a difference in how it sheds their loose fur. Professional grooming salons can use a variety of different brush types depending on what is best suited for your furry friend’s breed. 

6. Stress Reduction/Desensitization

A dog that has an irregular or negligent grooming schedule may feel anxious or scared when the time comes. This can lead to behaviors like shaking, growling, and even biting. 

Generally, being brushed and blow-dried should feel comfortable or, at the very least, tolerable, but without practice, the grooming process may be a scary experience. Positive interactions with their groomer can help the dog establish trust and social skills outside of the home. 

7. Professional Equipment Means Professional Standards

A trained dog groomer will have more available resources to thoroughly clean and pamper your pup. Not only can a professional groomer provide more extensive services than an at-home bath, but they also have a more convenient working space that is meant to sustain wet dog fur and dander. Your bathroom, on the other hand, may not be.

A trained groomer is also prepared for many different situations regarding a dog’s behavior. You may be shocked at how your dog responds when they are confused or scared, but a professional groomer will know how to stay calm and in control in these situations. 

How Often Should My Dog Be Groomed?

This question is highly subjective to the dog’s breed. 

The general rule of thumb is that dogs with thicker coats, like the Maltese, will require more frequent brushing and full-service grooming treatments, whereas thin, short-haired dogs, such as Beagles and Boxers, can go longer in between brushing. The occasional brush through their coat will still be beneficial in removing dead skin, dander, and loose fur from their undercoat 

Neglecting Proper Grooming Needs Can Lead to Health Problems Later

When a dog’s coat is not properly maintained, it can result in a variety of health issues including but not limited to: 

  • Skin infections: Without a regular grooming schedule, uncomfortable buildup like dirt and excess oil can lead to bacterial or fungal infections. Not grooming will lead to mats and tangles in the dog’s fur, and combining that with accumulated bacteria and trapped moisture will only create the perfect environment for skin infections to develop.  
  • Heat intolerance: Heat stroke is a serious and potentially life-threatening condition. About 14% of canine heat stroke cases result in death. Dogs with thick coats are more susceptible to heat stroke in the summer months because they will have a harder time regulating their body temperature. Regular grooming can help shed thick and unnecessary fur. 
  • Paw problems: Your dog’s groomer will spend time maintaining their paws during their session. A dog’s nails can grow so long that they curve into the paw pad, creating extreme pain when the pup attempts to put pressure on it. Also, paw pads require attentive care after being used all day, just like human feet. A groomer can apply a moisturizer such as some coconut oil to paws after shaving excess hair in order to prevent cracking.
  • Decreased quality of life: Neglecting your dog’s skin and coat health can lead to a generally decreased quality of life due to constant irritability, itchiness, pain, and limited mobility. A poorly maintained coat will be frustrating for a dog and they may take it out by displaying aggressive behaviors such as biting or barking.  

Greenlin Pet Resorts in Mechanicsburg Offers Add-On Bathing Services With Every Type of Stay!

At Greenlin Pet Resorts, our dog bathing services are available to all guests who book overnight dog boarding stays or daytime playdates at our dog daycare facility. While we cannot clip or style your pet’s coat, as we are not professional groomers, we can provide a relaxing and cleansing bath to restore them to their natural luster. Our staff is also trained to spot signs of skin and coat issues in advance, making dog bathing an important part of any pup’s care routine.

After a long day of fun, your dog can enjoy a luxurious treatment that has them looking squeaky clean when you pick them up. We have six locations in the Pennsylvania area, so reach out to one near you today to learn more about these services!

Click on one of the following locations to book online: