Archive for Dog Grooming

Does Your Dog Need Sunscreen?

Believe it or not, some dogs do need to use sunscreen. While dogs enjoy the sun as much as any of us, there are some breeds that are hairless and other breeds with white or pink skin which is sensitive to the sun. Owners with these dogs need to take some special precautions so their dogs’ skin won’t burn.


Which breeds?

Hairless breeds include:

  • Chinese Crested (AKC and other registries)
  • Xoloitzcuintli (Mexican Hairless Dog) (AKC and other registries)
  • Peruvian Hairless Dog (Perro Sin Pelo del Perú) (FCI, UKC, AKC Foundation Stock Service)
  • American Hairless Terrier (UKC)


Non-registered breeds:

  • American Crested Sand Terrier
  • Hairless Khala (Argentine Pila Dog)


All of these breeds might need some sunscreen when they are out in the sun, especially if you live in a very hot, sunny area. Some of these dogs have both hairless and coated versions, or dogs that have some slight fur on their bodies. The hairless dogs may need some moisturizer for their skin, too. For example, the Chinese Crested has both a hairless and powder puff variety. The hairless has a smooth body with skin showing. They feature silky hair on their head, “socks” on their paws, and a plume on their tail. They require sunscreen when outside and they often need some moisturizer for their soft skin.


The Xolo or Mexican Hairless Dog also has skin showing over his body. These dogs are an ancient breed from Mexico and they were sacred to the Aztecs and other central American people. The dogs are believed to date back more than 3000 years and it’s thought that they derive from a spontaneous genetic mutation for hairlessness.


Hairless dogs sometimes have problems with acne if too much lotion or cream is used on their bodies or if they are bathed too often. Bathing can strip away their natural skin oils, just as it does with coated dogs.


Other dogs that need sunscreen

Other dogs that sometimes need sunscreen include dogs with white or pink skin. If your dog has a white or partly white coat, then he probably has white or pink skin beneath it. He should be fine outside unless he likes to lie on his back and show off his stomach. The fur is very thin over the abdomen and inner thighs. You can apply sunscreen in this area to protect your dog.


If your dog has a pink or pale nose you can also place some sunscreen on it for protection. Delicate ears are another place where you might want to apply some sunscreen.


And, any dog that has a thin coat with little undercoat might need some sunscreen. But try not to grease your dog up with too much of the product. If you can easily see your dog’s white or pink skin through his hair, then some sunscreen might be in order. Or you can limit your dog’s exposure to the sun.


What to use?

Vets advise you to avoid using any product with zinc oxide on your pet. If your dog licks zinc oxide it can make him dangerously anemic. Otherwise you can use sunscreens that are SPF 15. There is one sunscreen that is made specifically for dogs (and horses) and approved by the FDA: The Epi-Pet Sun Protector Sunscreen.


Most dogs can enjoy the sun without any problems but if you have a hairless dog or a dog with more sensitive skin, a little sunscreen can provide the protection your dog needs

Winter can be tough on all of us, and that includes your dog. Cold weather, snow, ice, dry air in the house, shivering wind chills when you take your dog for a walk – all of these wintry elements can leave your dog’s coat in desperate need of care. You might be left wondering what happened to the fluffy pup or sleek canine you were petting last summer.

Here are some grooming tips to help your dog survive the winter and keep his good looks.

Groom your dog regularly. Dogs need to be groomed on a regular basis in the winter. This is especially true when they are shedding old coat and growing new hair. Brushing your dog often will also stimulate the skin which spreads the natural skin oil over your dog’s body. These natural oils are good for the skin and they help condition the coat. Remember to clean your dog’s ears regularly and brush his teeth, too. When grooming your dog you should use your hands to feel all over his body. This will help you find any lumps or bumps when they are small so a vet can take care of them before they become serious.

Keep your dog’s coat clean
. Many people think that it’s not necessary for a dog to get a bath in the winter but it’s important to keep your dog’s coat bathed and clean. It’s easier to brush and groom a clean coat. A clean coat won’t smell bad. And keeping the coat bathed and clean will also cut down on the amount of hair that is shed in your home. When you bathe your dog, remember to towel dry or blow dry your dog so that he is completely dry after the bath to avoid skin irritations and hot spots.

Use the right conditioners. A good conditioner can be very important for your dog in the winter. For example, if your dog spends a lot of time playing in the snow, use a silicone based spray-in conditioner to repel snow from the coat. If your dog’s coat is dry and straw-like, trim the ends and use a good conditioning shampoo for his coat type.

Take care of your dog’s paws and nails
. Long hair around the paw pads will accumulate ice and snow when your dog is outside so keep this hair trimmed short. Check your dog’s paws for snow and ice when he comes inside the house. If he does have ice between his toes, you can remove the ice comfortably by placing his paws in warm water. Be sure to check your dog’s ear tips and pads for frostbite, too, especially if he spends a long time outside in low temps. Make sure you keep his nails trimmed regularly, too. If your dog’s paws or nose becomes chapped, you can soothe them with some lanolin. Avoid letting your dog walk on salted or chemical-treated sidewalks, if possible. You can also invest in some dog booties to protect your dog’s paws.

Dry your dog when he’s been outside.
If your dog has been outside playing in the snow, be sure to towel him off until he’s dry when he comes inside. Or use the blow dryer to dry him and warm him up.

Beware of sunburn! Yes, dogs do become sunburned, even in winter. Dogs with white coats, especially short, thin coats, are especially prone to sunburn, or winter burn. You can apply sunscreen to your dog to help prevent this burn. Hairless dogs will also need sunscreen to protect them from burning.

Put a coat or sweater on your dog if he needs one. Lots of people are uncertain whether their dog needs a coat or sweater. While dogs can usually tolerate normal winter temperatures, it’s important to remember that many breeds are now living in places where they didn’t develop. Chihuahuas, from a warm area in Mexico, get cold in northern cities. The same is true of many other small breeds who were bred to live in the home and be companions. A large Newfoundland who can jump into icy waters probably won’t ever need a coat; nor will a Siberian Husky; but there are many breeds who can use some extra warmth on a cold day. If you have a breed with a thin coat such as an Italian Greyhound, for example, and your dog shivers when he’s outside in the cold, go ahead and get him a coat or sweater.

Finally, keep your dog well-hydrated in winter and provide extra calories if necessary. Cold weather usually causes dogs to use extra energy just to stay warm so they often need some extra calories, especially if they spend much time outside. Feeding a nutritious dog food is one of the best ways to help your dog have a healthy skin and coat. Remember that snow and ice are not adequate sources of water for your dog. Be sure to provide plenty of fresh water for your dog in the winter. Clean water to drink will help your do maintain healthy skin and coat, too.

What better way to top off a fashionable ensemble than with the perfect hair accessory? Bows, barrettes, and hats are very popular items with dog owners and you can find them anyplace you buy dog clothing. If you use a groomer for your dog you can probably ask your groomer about bows and barrettes, too. He or she may be able to tell you good places to purchase them or they may have some for sale in their shop.


Bows for dogs are usually rather small so we don’t usually use the same bows that are made for people – they’re too large and heavy. Bows can range from simple little grosgrain bows to very elaborate pieces with multiple layers or even with rhinestones or other things to make them stand out. And, of course, they can come in any color or kind of ribbon or fabric. If you can’t find what you want in a store or online, you can certainly make your own bows. Bows come in different sizes but most of them are about 3/8 or 5/8 inch wide. Some people like to put a bow in the center of their dog’s head to hold the topknot of hair; and other people like to put a bow on each ear. It’s up to you and your dog, and the outfit your dog is wearing.  Both male and female dogs wear bows.


Generally speaking, you can’t really tie a bow into your dog’s hair. It will slide out. You need a small rubber band to hold the hair and then you can tie the bow around it.



Barrettes are very similar to dog bows. In some cases you can use a barrette to secure a bow in your dog’s hair. Barrettes often allow you to use other things besides ribbon when you want to put something in your dog’s hair, such as little artificial flowers or pieces of rhinestone jewelry or other items. They lie flatter than bows.



Hats for dogs are usually chosen with a particular outfit or occasion in mind. Many dog owners like for their dogs to wear baseball caps or other team hats, too. If you have rain gear for your dog, some owners like to add a rain hat to keep their dog’s head from getting wet. If your dog has a beautiful party dress, some owners will add a matching hat. Party hats are also very popular – let your dog celebrate New Year’s Eve with a sparkly chapeau! And don’t forget birthday hats. And how could we forget St. Patrick’s Day?

There are really hats for all occasions and dogs look adorable when they wear hats so get creative and have fun with your dog’s head gear.

If you want to take things a step further, some owners even enjoy adding a wig to their dog’s look. It’s just for fun and wigs go great with hats. Wigs for dogs are lots of fun when your dog is dressed up for special occasions like Halloween

While dogs and their haircuts get most of the attention at dog shows, there is quite a bit of dog fashion on display at most shows. Even such wash ‘n wear dogs as Pointers and other shorthaired breeds can display some bling in and out of the ring. Show fashions for dogs include such items as collars, leads, grooming coats, and snoods, to name just a few things.


Collars and leads

Gone are the days when show dogs would wear simple Resco show leads or a chain link collar and nylon lead. Sure, there are still plenty of handlers who use these traditional leads at shows but you’re just as likely to see a dog sporting something much fancier in the ring. Kangaroo leather leads are popular today with some handlers because of their softness and pliability. Other handlers like something a little showier. They choose colored, braided show leads with beads, usually custom-made . The colors are often chosen to emphasize their dog’s coloring. Such leads can be expensive but when you have a special dog you want to call attention to him or her.


Grooming coats

Another item you often see at dog shows, especially if you wander around the grooming area, is a grooming coat or jacket. (This doesn’t refer to the groomer’s jacket worn by the handlers, though they wear them, too.) Grooming coats for dogs are often placed on a dog after a bath to help the hair dry flat or to keep the hair in place before the show. They can come in a variety of materials depending on the kind you want for your dog, the weather, and other factors, but lycra coats made of swimsuit material are very popular. The lycra swimsuit coats typically have a narrow opening for the head to keep the hair on the neck smooth. The material around the body is loose and open so the handler has to pin it in place. These suits come in a variety of colors and prints. Many people who sew make them and sell them so if you would like to buy one for your dog you can often ask around and find out who is making them or find someone online who makes them. The coats are especially useful for longhaired dogs.


Grooming coats are removed once the dog arrives at the show so the handler can apply some last minute touches prior to going in the ring.



Snoods look something like shower caps for dogs. They are cloth hoods that fit around a dog’s head and especially the ears of longhaired dogs. Owners use them to keep long ears out of food, though some people keep the snood on the dog at other times besides meal time. They can be made out of any lightweight material and they have elastic sewn around the edges to hold them in place. Dogs usually learn to put up with them, though most owners have to keep putting them back on when they come off. Along with keeping the dog’s ears out of his food, the purpose of the snood is to keep the ears clean and keep the long ear hair from breaking off. Think of them as turbans for dogs. As you can imagine, snoods come in all kinds of colors and prints.


Along with these fashions, there are many other things used for grooming and showing dogs that can come in a variety of colors and styles. Brushes and other grooming accessories can come in different colors is you would like to have your tools match your dog’s things. Even shears come in pink, blue, and other colors if you would like to invest in colors. Dog shows can be as fashionable as you would like to make them.

Keeping your dog’s skin and coat healthy and looking good can be challenging at times, especially if your dog has any skin problems. It’s not uncommon for dogs to have dry skin, itchiness, or redness from irritation or allergies. While it’s always essential to find the underlying causes of any skin problems, and this may involve working with your veterinarian to identify an allergy to to get rid of fleas, there are some healthy rinses you can apply to your dog’s skin and coat for temporary relief.

Herbal astringents are a good way to handle many temporary problems. For example, if your dog is suffering from a few flea or mosquito bites, witch hazel – easily found in any drug store – is a good way to stop the itch. Witch hazel is made with isopropyl alcohol and you should make sure that your dog doesn’t ingest it. Use just a few dabs on a bite.

For hot spots you can use something like Animal Apawthecary’s FidoDerm Herbal Spray. It contains aloe vera and calendula to stop the itching and promote healing, as well as antibacterial and antifungal essential oils.

For a dog with wet, runny sores and oozing bites you will probably need to use an all-over rinse that contains aloe vera.

If your dog has dry, flaky skin, use products that contain vegetable oils, collagen, and herbs that promote healing without stripping the natural oils from the dog’s hair follicles. AvoDerm Collagen Spray from Breeder’s Choice is often recommended.

If your dog is itching but you can’t see any redness, bites, or sores, try rinsing him in oatmeal from your kitchen. Cook it until it’s in a loose, soupy state, let it cool, and then (outside) pour it all over your dog. Let it stay on your dog as long as you can before rinsing it off or brushing it out.

You can also use peppermint or lavender (or combine them) as a skin rinse. Or you can also use rosemary. You can find these herbs in bulk at your local health food store. Using a tea ball, pack it with the herbs and steep it in a couple of quarts of water that is close to boiling, then wait until it cools. Pour it over your dog. Not only does this rinse help your dog’s itching but it also smells very nice.

If your dog has some slight redness you can use a daily rinse made with chamomile, plantain, or calendula together or separately. Make a tea out of these herbs, let it cool, and soak your dog, letting him drip dry.

If your dog has any sores or scratches you can combine comfrey and calendula with sage, bee balm, thyme, and/or yarrow tea using equal amounts. This mixture is good for healing and helps stop any bacterial infection without irritating your dog’s skin.

Obviously, if your dog has serious skin problems or if he shows signs of infection, you should take him to the vet, but these rinses will help in many mild to moderate cases.

You can also use a nice rinse to keep fleas away from your dog, provided there is no heavy infestation. Slice a lemon into segments and pour a quart of boiling water over it. Add a sprig of rosemary to the water and let it sit overnight. Strain the water the next morning and you will have a nice citrus rinse to pour over your dog to prevent fleas. This rinse usually keeps working for a week or two. And your dog will smell very good.

Finally, just for a nice conditioning rinse for your dog’s coat, you can use rosemary. You can use a teaspoon of dried rosemary and pour a pint of boiling water over the herbs. Let it steep for about 10 minutes then strain or remove the herbs. Allow the liquid to cool. You’re ready to pour the rinse over your dog’s coat after a bath. He’ll smell wonderful and his coat will be soft and easy to care for.

Article by Nancy Cope, owner of the popular online dog boutique Pampered Dog Gifts, where you can find everything you need to pamper your pooch.

The basic reason dogs have tear stains on their face is because they are shedding tears instead of the tears draining properly into their tear ducts. There can be other reasons for dogs to have tears. Short-nosed breeds often have shallow eye sockets which cause the normal tears to fall out onto the dog’s face. In some cases a dog will have excess tearing because he has hair around his eyes that irritate them or which “wick” the tears out of the eyes and onto the face. There are also some other reasons due to eye structure or eye problems such as an eye infection or glaucoma, or an irritation caused by an eyelash rubbing against the eye.

All dogs can have tears on their face but staining is most noticeable if you have a white dog.  This is because the tears will come in contact with bacteria or red yeast on your dog’s face and produce a reddish stain that is easy to see on a white dog.

Depending on the reason why your dog has tear stains, there are often ways to minimize their appearance. If your dog has tear stains because he has shallow eye sockets, such as with the short-nosed breeds, you can’t change the shape of his eye sockets, but you can do some things to keep the stains at bay. If your dog has tear stains because of a constant eye irritation, you can keep the hair around his eyes trimmed and see a vet about any eye infection or glaucoma.

If your dog has tear staining because of a problem with eyelashes that turn in or an eyelid problem, there are some surgical options. You can talk to your vet about what he or she might be able to do to fix the problem.

You can make the tear stains less noticeable in the following ways:

  • Antibiotics: Some owners use tetracycline or tylosin to reduce or eliminate tear stains. It’s probably not a good idea to use these antibiotics indefinitely since they can lead to drug-resistant bacteria in some cases.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar: Many owners swear by apple cider vinegar added to food and drinking water to reduce or eliminate tear stains. They use raw apple cider vinegar from a product that still has the “mother” in the jar. They add a tablespoon a day to the dog’s food or water. The acidity in the apple cider vinegar is supposed to keep the tears from staining when they come in contact with any bacteria on the dog’s face. It’s a theory anyway.  Some people like to add ½ to a whole Tums to their dog’s food each day. Like the apple cider vinegar, the Tums will change the pH in your dog’s tears slightly and stop the tear stains.
  • Distilled Water: According to many people, giving your dog distilled water to drink can help eliminate tear staining.
  • Grooming Products. There are many grooming products you can use to remove or whiten tear stains. You can use hydrogen peroxide to clean the tear stains off your dog’s face. There are also products made specifically for tear stains which work for some dogs. Angel Eyes is popular with many owners.
  • Wash your dog’s face: You should wash your dog’s face on a daily basis, making sure to gently remove any staining under the eyes. Be careful to clean around the eyes and examine them for any problems.

You may not be able to stop  your dog’s tears but you should be able to make any stains less noticeable by using one of these methods.

If you browse online or in your local pet store, you will quickly discover that there are literally hundreds of dog shampoos and bathing products. Beyond simple shampoos, there are conditioners, detanglers, colognes for dogs, medicated shampoos, shampoos and conditioners for every skin condition, flea and tick shampoos, whitening shampoos, and color enhancing shampoos, and the list goes on and on.

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Isle of Dogs™ No. 20 Royal Jelly Dog Shampoo Say goodbye to dull, lifeless hair and hello to volume and growth! Formulated with Royal Jelly, one of nature’s purest forms of protein, sweet-smelling Isle of Dogs™ No. 20 Royal Jelly Dog Shampoo repairs damage and cuts down on shedding with regular use. Features: . Royal Jelly is a cell rejuvenator, which helps to promote growth and cut down on shedding with frequent usage . Promotes new hair growth . Increases volume of dog’s existing coat . Apple Blossom Honey scent Item Specifications: Size: 1 Liter Ingredients: Deionized Water, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Cocamide DEA, Cocomidopropyl Betaine, PEG-3 Distearate, Royal Jelly, Polysorbate 20, Fragrance, DMDM Hydantoin, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate, Citric Acid, Sodium Chloride, Caramel

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How are you to know which products to buy for your dog? It can be hard to know what to buy. Here is an overview of the products available which should help you narrow down your choices and make a decision.

Shampoos for luxurious coat
Most dogs with normal skin can use this kind of shampoo. These shampoos may contain ingredients such as jojoba oil or have coconut oil in them. They usually have a nice fragrance. They will make your dog’s coat look and feel good. There may be some slight differences between brands but most of these shampoos will be good for your dog’s coat as long as he has no skin problems.

Shampoos for skin problems
Shampoos for dogs with skin problems are usually made for dogs with sensitive skin, dry skin, allergies, or irritated skin. They can have ingredients like oatmeal and other things to soothe the skin in them. These shampoos may also be moisturizing.

Medicated shampoo
Medicated shampoos are usually obtained from your vet or by prescription. They can contain ingredients such as chlorhexidine. These shampoos are usually effective but you have to follow your veterinarian’s instructions.

Flea and tick shampoo
Flea and tick shampoos can range from products with natural ingredients to products with harsher chemicals. If you have a preference for natural ingredients you should be sure to read the label or the web site to make sure what the shampoo contains. If your dog has a heavy flea infestation you may need to use a shampoo with some of the stronger chemicals or talk to your vet about other flea control methods.

Whitening shampoo
There are many coat whitening shampoos today. Some of them use enzymatic cleaners and some of them bleach the coat. Read the label or web site to find out what each shampoo does. Whitening shampoos are primarily made for white or light-colored dogs but some of them will brighten other colors, too. Some whitening shampoos can be a little harsh on the coat so they are not recommended if your dog has sensitive or irritated skin.

Color enhancing shampoo
Color enhancing shampoos intensify colors other than white. There are shampoos for black coats, brown coats, red coats, and so on. They are generally safe but they should probably be avoided if your dog has sensitive or irritated skin.

Shampoo for stinky dogs
If your dog frequently smells bad from rolling in trash or getting into things he shouldn’t, then a shampoo for smelly dogs would be a good choice. These shampoos don’t quite get rid of skunk odor but they will make your dog smell better as a result of just about everything else. On the other hand, if your dog smells bad because of a skin condition, he should see a vet. A medicated shampoo is probably needed.

Texturizing shampoo
Many terrier breeds are supposed to have crisp hair instead of soft or fluffy hair. Their coats are “plucked” instead of clippered, traditionally, and they do not shed much. In order to help the coat stay rough and crisp (which protected them from the weather originally), you can use a texturizing shampoo on their coat. Many terrier owners don’t bother to do these things today, but there are texturizing shampoos available. When terrier breeds are shown at dog shows, they are prepared this way so they look correct.

There are almost as many conditioners as there are shampoos and probably one to match each coat type. In most cases it is fine to use a conditioner that is made to work with a particular shampoo (i.e., if you buy Peachy Keen Shampoo for Pretty Dogs, Peachy Keen Conditioner for Pretty Dogs is probably a good choice). However, it is not always necessary to use conditioner on your dog. If you have a shorthaired breed with a hard, smooth coat, for example, your dog might not need a conditioner. Wirehaired dogs don’t use conditioner. But dogs with medium and long coats usually need some conditioner.

Detanglers are often used on dogs with medium and long coats who are prone to getting tangles and mats. The detangler is usually sprayed on the dog when he is still wet from the bath. Then you comb through the coat and let it dry. The coat will usually resist tangling and knotting afterwards.

You can also buy cologne for your dog to make him smell nice. If you have taken your dog to a professional groomer then you know that your dog smells very nice when you pick him up. Groomers usually spritz dogs with some cologne when they finish grooming them. Some dogs don’t like the cologne so it’s up to you whether you try it or not.

These are the kinds of shampoos and bathing products available today. This list should give you some idea of which products will be most helpful for your dog.

How Frequently Must You Wash Your Dog?

People in the dog grooming organization are regularly asked by their clients how normally they ought to bathe their dog. This is a really widespread question because dog owners want to preserve their pets in tip-top condition.

They’re worried that if they bathe their dog too often it’ll cause dry skin, but in the event you don’t bathe your dog normally sufficient we all know the dreadful consequences. Specifically if it’s been raining outside. Due to the fact it’s a well-known fact that the smell of an unwashed, wet dog is enough to put Rosanne Barr off her dinner.

This issue of shampoo causing dry skin can be a pretty popular misconception. A lot of vets will tell you that dry skin on a dog might be brought on by bathing too frequently. But, unless you’re employing a especially harsh shampoo and/or your dog has particularly sensitive skin, it truly is most unlikely that you will trigger such a condition. A far a lot more essential factor in maintaining wholesome skin with the correct balance of natural oils is usually a beneficial diet plan. If you ensure that your dog eats properly, you’ll most likely come across that his skin and coat are kept in good condition regardless of how regularly you bathe him.

In case you are in any doubt about this, just ask any individual who enters their dogs into shows. Most show dogs will receive a bath every single day. I wouldn’t suggest such frequent bathing for most dogs since it is simply unnecessary. Nevertheless, weekly bathing is completely fine provided you use a gentle shampoo and follow up having a good conditioner to replace the natural oils which are lost for the duration of a bath.

One widespread mistake to appear out for if your dog has a skin condition, especially should you be utilizing a medicated shampoo, is not to bathe your dog so generally that you simply defeat the purpose of bathing at all. In case you do this the dog’s sebaceous glands can become over-active in a bid to replace the oils lost during washing, which can easily make the difficulty worse rather than much better.

An essential factor in deciding how often to bathe your dog is just how much your dog enjoys the act of washing. If your dog runs a mile every time he hears you running the bath, or creates mayhem whenever you take him into the bathroom, you will choose to minimise the quantity of time you spend bathing him. If nevertheless your dog is among the few who really loves bathtime, you could wind up becoming talked into giving him a bath just for fun, even when he does not definitely need to have 1.

So, despite the fact that the choice of how often you want to bathe your dog is purely subjective, based on how dirty and smelly he is also as just how much hassle it’s, you may just be most effective following the rule of thumb that a bath as soon as a month keeps on best of the cleaning aspects of the task without generating too much additional function for you and stress and hassle for your dog.

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The German Shepherd is an excellent family dog. They must have proper training and socialization as puppies in order to mature to be the outstanding beautiful dog they are. Coming from Germany they are a large breed dog .. The name – Deutscher Schaferhund – literally translates to German Shepherd Dog. Originally used for herding and protecting sheep, they are now needed for almost everything from loyal family pets, Family Protection Dogs, guard dogs, personal companions, police dogs, drug dogs, bomb detection dogs, military dogs, search and rescue, agility, show, schutzhund, obedience, tracking, service dogs, therapy dogs…… you name it! A German Shepherd can do it all.

A true German Shepherd is loyal and willing to work. They are born and bred to please their human master and there is no assignment to small to give their heart out to do for you. A quiet dog with the kids from newborns to goofy teenagers to a fierce guardian of what is theirs. An intelligent k-9 they often out think their human counterparts, and don’t do well chained in the back yard where they will become bored, a terrible way to treat a dog as majestic as the German Shepherd.

They are a large breed with the German Shepherd AKC Standard for them being 22-26 inches high at the shoulder and weigh between 50 and 90 pounds – with some even going as much as 100-120 pounds. A German Shepherd owner should be careful though, not to let their dog get overweight which will cause unnecessary strain on their joints.

The standard is a short coat dog that is either black and tan or black and red – the color of Rin Tin Tin. Although , they do come in almost every color from solid black to solid white and sable which is typically light coloring through out their body (no solid coloring) and Bi-Color which is almost solid black with only a little tan on each leg up to about their pastern and a little tan on their face around their eye brows and cheeks.

Although the standard is a short coat the German Shepherds does come in short and long hair. They do shed some. Twice a year they “blow” their coat and shed very heavily for about a week. A hefty daily brushing during this time helps keep the hair out of the home! Other than blowing their coat they don’t need a lot of grooming . A bath several times a month and good brushing several times a week just to keep the hair down around the home. Their coat doesn’t knot. And they don’t pick up to much debris outside (such a cockle burs ).

If they come from good breeding stock and get proper care they can be expected to live about 12 years – I am a German Shepherd Breeder and some of mine have lived up to 16 years!

They adore kids and will normally follow them around giving you peace of mind that no one will mess with your kids. It is a proven fact that thieves will go somewhere else if they see a German Shepherd around – they are even better than a electric alarm system !

As you can tell a German Shepherd really can do it all!

How To Shave A Dog

The fur is a dog’s crowning glory but there are situations when dog owners would think that shaving will be best for the dog. The heat of the summer months would take a toll on the dog thus long haired breeds are commonly shaved. Excessive shedding, fur that tangles and mats easily, hot spots and other fungal infections are usually the reasons why a pet owner would opt to shave the dog. Dogs advanced in age would not appreciate a good brushing thus an owner would choose to shave the dog to lessen the need to groom.

Dog owners would opt to shave the dog for different reasons. Professional groomers charge from $40 to $80 to shave a dog. Shaving the pet would be fun – the dog will not complain and the hair would grow in no time anyways.

If you have decided to shave the dog, the task would be much easier (and kinder on the clipper) if the hair is clean and tangle free. Bathing the dog before the shaving session will remove the dirt from the coat. The coat must be thoroughly dried and combed to remove tangles. The shaving task would be easier and of course kinder on your back if the dog is positioned on a table but ensure that the head of the pet is loosely fastened to an overhead support to prevent the dog from jumping while being shaved. A dog that will be shaved for the first time must be accustomed to the humming and the vibration of the clipper thus before the starting to shave lay the turned on clipper against the body of the dog.

With a #10 blade start shaving the hair between the eyes of the dog. Carefully shave the hair between the eyes. Move on to the face and to the ears. For long eared breeds, lift the ear to shave the hair on the inner ear.

The next is the armpit area. You need to raise the legs but be sure that the position is not making the dog uncomfortable. The anal area comes next. Shaving the anal area is necessary for long haired dogs. Change the blade with a longer one and shave the rest of the body. Run the clipper in long slow strokes from the head to the neck and down to the side of the body . Pull the loose skin of the belly to make shaving easier. Last to be shaved are the legs and feet. Finished! Pat yourself on the back and hug the dog for a job well done.

Learn more about how to shave a dog and dog first aid at Sarah’s Dogs.