We’re confident many dog owners will agree with us on this one. Having a freshly groomed, silky smooth pet is one of the best parts of being the leader of your own pack. Grooming can be tricky and usually requires some training.
Whether you have your dog professionally groomed or carry out the practice at home, taking the time to ensure your pet is clean and healthy not only means you can enjoy more bedtime cuddles without dirt getting everywhere, but it also means you or your groomer can carry out regular checks for unwanted intruders such as fleas or ticks.
However when it comes to grooming your dog, the process might not always be as straight forward as it should be. It’s just in the nature of some dogs to want to avoid sitting still even for a short period of time, while others may become anxious when you attempt to move them into the unnatural positions that are sometimes required to groom them thoroughly.
If this sounds familiar, check out these top three training tricks for dogs who just aren’t the biggest fans of being groomed.
Have Treats on Hand to Reward Your Dog
Using treats to reward your dog and reinforcing good behavior is one of the oldest tricks in the book, which is exactly why we’ve included it as Number 1 on this list.
Although your pet may not initially enjoy being groomed, when they find out that treats are on offer for behaving in the right way than they will soon start coming round to the idea.
You can start off by simply rewarding your dog for sitting still for extended periods. You can then build upon this behavior and reward your dog when they make it through whole grooming sessions without causing any commotion at all.
Slowly but surely you will begin to notice a stark contrast in how your dog behaves while being groomed and they will start to love being groomed more than you enjoy bathing them.
Use Practice Objects to Familiarize Your Dog with Grooming Tools
This might sound like a strange suggestion at first. Why would you want to train your pet with practice objects rather than the real thing? This trick actually has a number of benefits.
Grooming tools come in a number of different shapes and sizes. Not only that, but electric grooming sheers and nail clippers and grinders can also give off some rather strange sounds, which are enough to unsettle some dogs before you’ve even begun trying to groom them.
By using a practice object you can choose an item that will give off no sound at all and can also serve as a gentle yet blunt message that you won’t harm your dog if they flinch quickly or try to get away.
You can begin using the practice item by running it close to your pet’s face and around their paws and coat to see how they react. If your dog gives off no reaction at all you can move on to using the real thing knowing your dog will remain calm.
Keep Sessions Short and Slowly Increase Grooming Time
At first you should look to keep the grooming process as short as possible. Even the most boisterous or nervous of dogs will be able to sit for 1-2 minutes at a time.
Although it may be difficult to groom your pet effectively in this time that isn’t the overall goal here. Instead you want to get your pet used to the idea of being groomed and by slowly increasing the length of the grooming sessions each time you can do so without unsettling your pet.
Once they know they have nothing to fear and that no matter how long the grooming session lasts that they will absolutely fine you will start to see a change in their attitude to bath time and may even start to enjoy the process, especially if you keep the treats coming every now and then!