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How old is your dog?

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What’s better than puppies? That’s right: your own puppy. So, what do you need to know before you take the plunge into pet parenthood?

0-2 months
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0-2 months

Welcome to the world little one. It’s all grow-grow-grow for your puppy right now, so there’s many things to prepare.

2-3 months
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2-3 months

Your puppy is ready to come home and turn your world upside down. It’s time to put your preparation into practice – and remember to take it all in!

3-6 months
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3-6 months

You’re entering a period of immense growth, lots of learning and new adventures. Bring on the play date with the big wide world!

6-12 months
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6-12 months

Your fur-baby is nearing adulthood. Can you see their grown self coming through? Sigh…they grow up so fast, don’t they?

12-18 months
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12-18 months

Your puppy has turned one and they might not be so little anymore. Make sure to book their first annual check-up.

18 months - 3 years
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18 months - 3 years

Your dog is one an established family member now. Enjoy who they have become and the bond you now share at this special stage.

3 - 8 years
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3 - 8 years

Your dog is a full-grown adult now. They understand where their place is in your home and the wider world.

8+ years
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8+ years

Just like many senior citizens, senior dogs have some extra needs. Learn to look after your best friend and support their health as they grow older.

Taking your Dog to a Professional Groomer

Dr Kate Mornement - Pet Behaviourist profile picture

Dr Kate Mornement - Pet Behaviourist

PhD in Companion Animal Behaviour, BSc(Hons) in Zoology

Dr Kate Mornement is an Applied Animal Behaviourist, Consultant and Educator to pet parents, industry, government and media. She has a PhD which focused on companion animal behaviour from Monash University and a Bachelor of Science with Honours in Zoology (Animal Behaviour) from La Trobe University.

Taking your Dog to a Professional Groomer

Professional groomers provide an important service for many dogs. But do all dogs need to go to a professional groomer, and how do you choose the right groomer for you and your dog?

Why do dogs need grooming?

Dogs must be groomed regularly to keep their coats healthy and prevent overgrown toenails. Brushing your dog removes grass seeds, dirt and debris and helps to distribute the natural oils through the coat more evenly. Brushing also helps remove knots and prevents matting in long-haired dogs.

Keeping your dog’s toenails trimmed prevents them from getting too long and causing pain or discomfort.

In general, dogs with longer, single coats require much less maintenance in terms of grooming. Whereas dogs with long or curly coats, or coats that keep growing require more maintenance. By grooming regularly, you can remove loose hair and prevent matting, which can cause irritation, excessive licking, and even hot spots.

This is where professional groomers come into the picture. If you have a dog with a high maintenance coat it’s likely you’ll need the services of a professional groomer to help keep your dog’s coat in great condition.

Do different breeds have different grooming needs?

Yes! The amount and type of grooming a dog requires vary depending on their breed, breed type, age, size and coat length. For instance, puppies typically require less grooming than adults since their coats are still growing. Groomers offer different services at different price points depending on your dog’s breed, breed type, size, coat length, and your preferences.

High-maintenance breeds and breed types include Poodles, Schnauzers, Cavoodles, Labradoodles, Schnoodles, Bichon Frises, Portuguese Water Dogs, Old English Sheepdogs, and Siberian Huskies. Some of these dog breeds are clipped and groomed in a specific way. These cuts, which are commonly referred to as breed trims, can take a lot of time and are, therefore, usually more expensive than a wash and trim.

Breed and breed types that are considered lower maintenance when it comes to grooming include Boxers, Staffordshire bull terriers, Kelpies, Jack Russell Terriers and Labradors.

Other considerations when it comes to grooming

When considering grooming, you should also take into account the climate in your area and your dog's age.

Dogs living in hotter climates may benefit from more regular grooming to remove loose fur and keep them cool.

Whereas dogs living in a cooler climate might not need to see the groomer as often, especially if they receive regular brushing at home in between appointments.

Puppies must be fully vaccinated before visiting the groomer and need a caring and kind introduction to make the experience less stressful. While older, more frail dogs should be handled very gently, and the groomer should be advised of special instructions regarding any health concerns.

Rewarding good grooming behaviour with treats from a young age will get them more excited about going and being a good girl or boy.

Choosing a Groomer

When choosing a groomer, it’s important to select one who is kind, knowledgeable and understanding. Call some groomers in your local area and discuss your dog’s grooming needs. Choose a groomer who will be patient with your dog, reassure them, and ensure your dog has a pleasant grooming experience. You can also read reviews left by other customers to see if they’ve been happy with the service provided.

To get a feel for whether a groomer is suitable for you and your dog, visit their grooming salon to meet them and view their set-up. Ask lots of questions about how they ensure a positive grooming experience for your dog.

Always choose a groomer your dog is comfortable with.

If you want to avoid paying grooming fees, you can also learn how to groom your dog yourself. Online and in-person pet grooming classes are available to teach you everything you need to know about grooming your dog at home.

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