As Pupster Mammy to two cute bitches and a foster mammy to many a poundie/rescue dog I have picked up a wealth of tips over the years on how to keep your furry friends coat/appearance in tip top condition. I decided to put together some practical bits of advice for our readers who own dogs or who are thinking of becoming dog owners. As always, please remember I am not an animal healthcare/welfare specialist, the following tips are merely what’s worked for me over the years! I hope you get some use out of it and I would love if you all have some tips to share in the comments section! Enjoy!
- Invest in a Furminator – Most breeds of dogs shed so regular grooming is essential both for the sake of your home and for your dogs coat. Regular grooming can help train a dog and get dogs that are nervous used to the human touch. Most dogs come to love being brushed and it’s great for bonding too! A Furminator is the KING of all brushes/de-shedding tools. It removes all the loose hair from your dogs coat thanks to its brilliant design: the design of the edge allows the tool to push through the topcoat to easily and gently remove the undercoat and loose hair without cutting or damaging the dog’s delicate skin. They are pricier than most other de-shedding tools/pet brushes on the market but are an investment worth making; my hoover doesn’t have to work quite as hard as it used to! Irish stockists of the Furminator include www.pet-bliss.com, www.zooplus.ie and plenty of independent pet retail shops.
- Washing – Believe it or not my dogs don’t get washed! They are both rescues and ever since they were pups they hated being washed. I tried all sorts of things to get them to behave in the shower but it didn’t work out and after months of trying I gave up! If they get dirty now I either brush it out or use un-scented baby wipes to do the job (I like Lidl’s baby wipes offerings). If their coat is a wee bit smelly I usually use Magic Coat Fresh Essence Cologne which I get from my local vets or Amazon.com to freshen them up. The dogs hate the smell of it so I only use it in worst case scenarios
- Fox Poo - I don’t know about your fur babies but mine love nothing better than to roll in stinky stuff. I live in a rural enough area and a few years back Sasha rolled in something in the local forest. She stunk to the high heavens and I retched all the way home in the car. I scrubbed her in the stink, sprayed her with some Magic Coat but the smell just lingered and lingered. I felt link it was sinking into all of my pores *vomits*. Long story short her coat looked clean but both Sasha and the house stunk. I took to the internet and from reading various forums etc I came to the conclusion that fox poo was the culprit. Fox poo stinks like nothing else in this world and it is extremely difficult to get out of your animals coat. The only thing that works quickly and effectively is tomato ketchup. I know it all sounds mental but trust me on this one! If your dog is stinking, massage some ketchup into the affected area, leave for a little while then shampoo out using either a dog shampoo or an unscented baby shampoo and there you have it, fox poo smell obliterated! If you are wondering why dogs like to roll in smelly stuff, in particular fox poo, it’s widely thought that it’s just an inherited behavior handed down from their ancestors who would do this to camouflage their own smell when out hunting.
- Food – Most people already know that we are what we eat so why people don’t feel the same about their pets is beyond me. Most supermarket brands of pet foods are pure shite. Apologies for cursing but that is how strongly I feel against most of the “Premium” supermarket pet foods. Feeding your dog supermarket pet food everyday is the equivalent of you eating McDonalds every day. Wet dog food (so food in tins) are made up of almost 90% water and 10% by products made up of god knows what. Supermarket kibble is usually made up of grain filler which is hard for dogs to digest. I dare you to have a google and get the full facts; it makes for awful reading. Supermarket food is generally bad, and it’s not so cheap either. My dogs are fed on a diet of dry kibble; I buy Champion Premium kibble from an excellent online Irish Supplier www.dogfooddirect.ie Michael over on dogfooddirect has a wealth of knowledge on dog food and has something to suit everyone’s budget. Get in touch with him and he will definitely send you in the right direction. They also run a charity food donation on site so it’s a Big thumbs up from me and the dogs. My dogs also get a raw egg each once a week over their kibbles and they also get a weekly treat of sunflower soaked tuna or tinned fish. Their coats are immaculate and I am constantly complimented on them *proudmammy*.
I have a wealth of other tips so I might make this a regular feature but for the moment please share your tips in the comments section!
Pic credits: www.meathdoggroomer.com, www.furminator.com, www.fourpaws.com, www.nationalgeographic.com and www.marvistavet.com