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What can you do to improve the health of your dog, its coat, and its skin that is cheap and effective? Grooming that’s what! The small investment of time and money involved for grooming can yield numerous benefits for your dog’s health! Is your dog’s coat looking dull, tatty and matted? Is your dog’s sad looking coat causing you to worry about his/her overall health? Sometimes the simple things can often provide very effective benefits, and in the case of the health of your dog, grooming is one of these simple measures that can yield big results.
Dog health and grooming go hand in hand as the act of grooming has numerous benefits that can help prevent many dog health problems before they arise. Like humans, regular grooming and attention to changes in the skin, eyes, and teeth can help maintain health and prolong the life of your pet, as many indications of possible health problems are noticed and addressed before they progress to something more sinister.
Health Benefits of Grooming
- Grooming removes dead hair leaving only the healthy hair behind, which immediately looks better. It also lets air circulate through the coat better reducing any odor, keeps the dog cooler, and looks cleaner. It is also a good idea to bath your dog regularly with a quality dog shampoo to further improve the benefits of general grooming.
- Grooming stimulates blood flow, which in turn improves blood supply to the hair follicles working wonders for the health of the overall coat.
- Grooming also stimulates the lymphatic system, thus having a positive affect on the dog’s overall health in the same way that a massage does for humans.
Residual Benefits of Grooming
Aside from the more obvious physical health benefits of grooming there are other benefits such as: –
- Bonding with your Dog – While grooming your dog you are helping to create a bond between you and your pet because of the physical touching and interaction. This also has a positive effect on the dog’s emotional state as it feels more comfortable and safe in your hands. Dogs always love the attention they get during grooming.
- Knowing your pet – While grooming your dog you get to know your pet better and know what he/she likes or dislikes, and its favorite and least favorite places to be touched or brushed. Knowing your pet will help you to notice any changes that may indicate a health problem, for instance if your dog suddenly flinches when touched in an area where it usually loves to be touched would alert you to investigate the cause of the tenderness.
- Spot Possible Health Dangers – While grooming your dog you can check the skin for possible skin rashes and problems like hair loss or lumps. Also check for signs that your dog has been scratching a certain area of the skin which would indicate some sort of irritation such as worms, fleas, mites or ticks. Ticks in particular can be deadly if left undetected and a thorough visual check of the dog’s skin should be a regular part of your dog health and grooming strategy. It is a good idea to check the eyes for any signs of sight or health problems while grooming your dog. Also check the pads and nails of the paws for problems that may require attention along with the teeth for signs of decay or gum problems.
Possible Bonus Benefit for you If you find that you enjoy grooming and become quite competent, you may consider starting your own dog grooming service to make a few extra dollars or perhaps turn it into a full time business. Dog grooming services are in high demand and can be very profitable. There is nothing better than making a living doing something that you enjoy.
What You Need to Start? It is important to get the right grooming tools and information on grooming techniques. The internet has is a wealth of information about grooming along with numerous sites that sell a range of grooming tools. Other sources are local pet supply stores or alternatively most towns and cities have a local dog association where dog lovers can meet and exchange ideas. Public libraries may also have books on dog grooming. The benefits to your dog’s health by regular grooming far outweigh the small outlay of money for the grooming tools, and time spent grooming. Your dog’s coat will look shiny and healthy and the health of your dog’s skin will also be improved. Spend a little time on your pet and he/she will love you for it.
© 2006 Colin L Wolfenden
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