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An Introduction to Dog Hygiene (part 1)

When we think of our dogs being clean, we don’t think of it as a requirement to better health and a longer life. So let’s be real, there’s more to dog hygiene than the occasional bath. This article explains the dog hygiene requirements.

The Bath

Unfortunately, most pet owners bathe their dogs too often. They do this because their dogs are all over their furniture, and it’s difficult to have a dog who was playing on the beach or in the mud then come in and sleep in bed with us. Surprisingly, you don’t need to bathe your dogs very often at all. According to veterinarians, we only have to bathe Fido once every two to three months. Frequent washes may irritate the dog’s skin, which can cause the skin to flake and the coat to become duller.

Brushing Teeth

Periodontal disease is the most common disease for dogs. Tartar builds up on the teeth and this disease forms in the gums. If untreated, periodontal disease can cause lethal bacterial infections. To avoid this, it is important to brush your dog’s teeth every day. You should brush your dog’s teeth in the evening, when plaque forms the most. If you don’t have access to a toothbrush, your fingers serve as a good substitute for brushing your dog’s teeth. Importantly, the younger you start this process, the more likely your dog is to be okay with having your fingers in her mouth!

Clipping Nails

Just like us, our pups could use some nail maintenance to maintain optimal health. Long nails can hurt you as much as it can hurt them. No longer are the days where your pup needs to dig to hide things, find food, or defend himself from predators. As long as you don’t nip the kwik (the part that holds the blood), your dog’s short nails (and if you’re really fancy, filed) will make you and your pup a happy camper.

Grooming

A luxury for many, dog grooming is important for your dog’s health for a variety of reasons. A fresh haircut can ignite healthy hair growth for your pup. A good brushing can result in the removal of dust and other particles that might be hiding in your pup’s coat. A good brushing also leads to softer, fuller hair, which is not necessarily a health benefit, but an aesthetic benefit, which we all can admit to enjoying. Buying a dog brush and learning how to shave or cut your dog’s hair might be too daunting a task for many, but if you want your pup to be a healthy, happy, beautiful dog, it’s worth the investment.