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Do's and Don'ts of Summer Dog Grooming

Summer Dog Grooming by Tara Edwards   |Published July 12, 2019

Summer has finally arrived! It brings a ton of exciting dog-friendly activities like romps on the beach, long walks in the park, swimming and camping.

Summertime also means grass and dirt stuck to your dog’s coat. To avoid getting frustrated and having to deal with a perpetually stinky house, follow these simple rules to keep your pooch looking and feeling its best during the summer. 

Schnauzer is standing on the beach.The Dos and Don'ts of Summer Dog Grooming

It's all about the grooming actually, so as long as you do it properly, everything will be fine. To do so, you will need to take a couple of things into consideration first.

What kind of breed your dog is, what type of coat they have, and how they handle the heat. Only when you know all that, you can start the grooming process.

Prepping Your Dog for the Beach Scene

Your dog's breed plays a significant role.

Not only their breed but their personality as well. If you have a dog that's passive and calm by nature and they don't like physical activities, you might not need to change their grooming habits at all.

Let them rest inside your climatized house during the day. Then just take them out for a walk at night, once the temperature outside becomes pleasant and refreshing.

More energetic dog breeds and personalities will need a change in their grooming habits. One late night walk a day won't be enough for them.

If you don't let them spend their excess energy outside, they will probably make a mess inside your house simply because they are bored. That is why you must groom them in a way so that they won't overheat when they are out in the sun.

The Type of Your Dog's Coat is Also Important

Types of dog coats can be divided into three major categories: long coats, short coats, and double coats (a soft undercoat and a coarser topcoat). Another way to look at dog hair coats is by length (long vs. short), texture (curly vs. straight), and coarseness (wire-haired vs. non-wire). 

All three coat types should be brushed regularly during the summer. This will help remove the loose hair strands and prevent the coat from becoming entangled.

Double Coated Dog Small Dog Breeds

Dogs with long hair will probably feel much more comfortable if you give them a nice haircut. Short haired dogs can be shaved in the summer.

But dogs with double coats such as Shih Tzus, Terriers and Pomeranians, are a whole different story. If you trim their coats too short, you won't be doing them a favor. Even though it might seem like that fluffy coat makes them feel much hotter, it's actually doing the opposite.

They regulate their body temperature through it, so if you shave the coat thoroughly, you'll mess up that process. Instead, according to Trimepil, you should use a deshedding tool specifically designed for dogs with double layers.

It can reach to the undercoat and remove loose hair, allowing the dog to feel much more refreshed and cooler.

Tips for Summer Dog Grooming

1. Bathe Your Dog Regularly

A small black dog is taking a bathBathing regularly helps keep dirt and odors down and keeps your dog looking his best.

Bathe your dog regularly during summer. They will gladly roll around in the dirt or jump into a lake to cool off a bit. That mud shouldn't stay on their coat for long because it might cause skin infections or inflammations.

Don't bathe them too often though, you don't want to wash off the natural oils off their hair and help it get entangled more easily.

Don’t bath your pup within 48 hours of applying topical flea and tick preventative. Those products work by soaking into the dog’s skin, and you’ll hinder their effectiveness wash them away too early.

2. Brush, Brush, Brush

A chocolate Shih Tzu is being brushed outdoors.Plan to brush more frequently in the summer months.

Summer dog grooming means brush their hair once in every two or three days.  Most dogs shed a lot during summer, so they need brushing more than they do in winter.

Plus, that excess hair is like a jacket that makes them feel even hotter. With proper brushing, you will help them feel much cooler and comfortable. Always choose a brush that is appropriate for your dog breed.

3. Don't Forget to Clean Their Ears

Clean their ears often. With all the water from lakes or the sea, as well as dirt getting inside of them during swimming and playtime, dog ears can get quite dirty in the summer.

The inside of a dog's ear creates a warm, moist environment for bacteria, yeast and even parasites such as ear mites.  This happens year-round, but can be especially problematic in the warm months. Summer dog grooming can't be complete without the focus on your dog's ears.

Dirt and debris can lead to infections if left untreated. Use an ear cleaning solution or wet wipes and clean their ears adequately after outdoor activities.

4. Paw Pads

Small white dog is having the hair between her paw pads clippedRemoving the stray hairs between your dog's paw pads will help keep feet cleaner.

Keep the pad hair short. This area contacts a lot of dirt while your dog is outside. If the hair here is left long, it will gather that dirt, and your dog will bring it inside your house.

Long haired dogs whose pad hair continues to grow can also get matted while also picking up dirt. Also, long pad hair can make a dog slip and injure themselves on slippery surfaces.

It is important to check pads regularly especially if your dog spends much time on hot artificial turf, asphalt, brick or concrete.  As we all know, the sand at the beach can also retain heat making it nearly impossible to walk barefoot comfortably.  

Dog paw burns are not uncommon but you can prevent them with a couple of simple measures.  Use dog boots if your dog will wear them. 

Not all dogs tolerate boots, though.  Another option is to put paw wax on your dog's paws before they go outdoors in hot weather.  You will want to wipe their paws when you return because the wax can be messy on clean floors.

If you fear your dog's paws may be burned, place a cold pack on them and call your vet.

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Conclusion

Summer can be the best time of the year to enjoy the great outdoors, but be sure your summer dog grooming fits the season.

I hope you liked this article. If you found it useful and interesting, share it with your friends. Now go and enjoy summer together with your dog!

Author Bio

Tara been researching and writing grooming related articles for years covering both human and animal grooming. With every piece she writes, her goal is to help our readers find the best fit for their unique needs. She is passionate about dogs, and knows the bond between humans and canines is like no other. 

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