Frequently Asked Questions

Why is grooming my dog so important?

Grooming is an important part of dog care. Depending on the breed, age and health of the dog, grooming may be a daily activity. Many breeds require significantly less grooming than this, but regular grooming helps to ensure the dog is healthy and comfortable. It is important to note, while many dogs shed, others such as the Poodle and Bichon, do not shed. Instead, their coat grows much like human hair, and requires trimming.

The main reasons for daily grooming include:

  • improved health of the skin and coat
  • decreases the chance of various health problems such as thrush, scratches, and other skin problems
  • cleans the dog
  • allows the groomer to check the dog's health, such as looking for cuts, heat, swelling, lameness, or a change in temperament (such as depression) which could indicate the dog is sick
  • helps to form a relationship between dog and owner

What kind of brush should I use to groom my dog?

All though there are many, many different brushes out there, one holds true to grooming and will be the most helpful to you! It is called the slicker brush. A slicker brush is a wire-pin brush that has bends at the end of the wires. This brush can be used on almost any breed of dog.

What if my dog has short hair?

One of the finest brushes for removing dust and loose hair on shorthaired breeds is a rubber curry brush. You would use it on breeds such as boxers and Dobermans. You can also use it in the bath for a better lather and to release more hair.

Should my dog's nails be trimmed regularly?

Nail trimming is absolutely necessary for maintaining good health. If a dog's nails are allowed to grow, they will curl over into a spiral shape; walking will become increasingly painful to the dog as they grow out. Uncut nails may curl so far that they pierce the paw pad, leading to infection and debilitating pain. Owners may choose to trim nails themselves or may opt to take their pet to a groomer or veterinarian.

What does it mean if the coat is matted?

A mat is a clump of hair that pulls, pinches, and blocks air circulation to the skin, causing great pain and discomfort to the pet. Dermatitis and sores can develop from these mats due to rubbing or biting to remove the mat and the pain. Increased growth of bacteria can cause itching. Some animals' ears may be so tightly matted to the hair on their necks that freedom of movement of both the head and neck is restricted. Matting can also cause behavioural changes due to the related discomfort.

What is an undercoat?

Dogs that were originally bred to herd sheep and cattle developed an extra growth of coat to protect them from the harsh outdoor weather they had to endure. This growth (called an undercoat) falls out when warm weather returns. The problem with dogs is that their undercoats do not completely fall out now that they live indoors. This undercoat that remains begins to tangle and generally causes discomfort for the dog and misery for the owner when the falling hair litters their home. Regular grooming makes sure that loose undercoat is fully removed.

What are anal glands? Will you sort them out?

Anal glands are small glands located on either side of the anus. Sometimes these glands fill with a strong, foul-smelling odour. Many dogs empty their anal glands when defecating; however, there are times when these glands do not empty themselves and they must be squeezed so that abscesses and infections do not occur.

At Dial a Dog Wash North West Manchester, I recommend that you visit your regular vet in order to empty the anal glands. As a groomer, I have been trained to clean and style your dog's coat, not to carry out medical procedures. Anal glands can be prone to infection if not tended to correctly.

Do you offer a flea treatment?

Fleas are relatively easy to eliminate. Any shampoo with a strong citrus scent will kill fleas, or you can use shampoo specifically made for this purpose. However you should spray your house and cars to rid them of any remaining fleas or eggs.

As your groomer, I can use a medicated flea shampoo at your request. This will immediately kill any fleas that are living on your dog. You must then spot treat your pet (using Frontline or similar) within 2 days of this groom to completely eliminate the fleas.

Do you sedate the dogs?

NO! I do not sedate dogs - this is a job for your vet. Nails are a common bug-bear in dogs but if you have had problems with this in the past, please let me know when you book your groom. I will assess your dog when I have him/her on my table. There have been occasions where I have been able to trim nails when the previous groomer could not, but I will not pursue this if your dog shows any signs of distress or aggression. I will inform you of any issues and refer you back to your vet for your dog's well-being.

Will you muzzle my dog?

I rarely find it necessary to muzzle and much prefer to build up trust with the dog. However, dogs that show signs of aggression or biting/licking at the clippers & scissors may be muzzled for both their safety and mine.

What if my dog is timid or nervous?

I am only too happy to work with nervous dogs. I like to build up a relationship with nervous or timid dogs and may suggest that we break the first couple of grooms down into smaller sessions at no extra cost, to allow the dog to gain trust in me without the unnecessary stress of a lengthy stay. Many dogs who were very nervous or scared to begin with have grown to love getting in the Dial a Dog Wash van.

Why do Dial a Dog Wash Manchester not offer a shaving service for my doublecoated breed? e.g. German Shepherds, Huskies, Golden Retrievers etc

As an owner of 3 double coated dogs, I am acutely aware of how to look after this type of coat and the damage that shaving can cause.

Many owners worry that their dogs are going to overheat during the warmer months of the year and that shaving will solve this problem. In actual fact, shaving a doublecoated dog makes it more likely that they will overheat. This is because their coat is specifically designed to regulate the body temperature, keeping them cool in summer and warm in winter.