Dog Grooming: The Dirt on Dog Fur

Soft and white. Red and curly. Smooth and brown. Your dog’s fur is its most distinctive feature. It’s the reason we love petting our dogs and it’s the attribute that makes them so darn cute.

But your dog’s coat is about more than just good looks. It protects her from the environment, microorganism and foreign objects. Fur also acts as insulation keeping her cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Dogs also use their coats to communicate. Ever seen the fur on a dog’s back stand up when it’s mad? That’s its fur talking!

So your dog’s coat serves a purpose, but it can also cause some problems. Fur gets pretty dirty because it traps dust and pollen that can cause allergic reactions for you – and your pet. Fleas and ticks take cover in fur. And let’s not forget the “s” word: shedding.

So, what’s the best way to keep your pet’s coat clean and healthy?  It depends on the type of coat.

Here are a couple of pointers on dog grooming based on common coat types.

Smooth, short coats:

  • Brush weekly with a rubber or bristle brush
  • Bathe as needed but at least every three months

Dense, short coat:

  • Brush weekly with a slicker brush to work out tangles and mats
  • Bathe as needed but at least every three months

Long, smooth coat:

  • Daily brushing with a slicker brush will keep the coat neat and tangle free
  • Some dogs will need regular, light trimming to maintain shape
  • Bathe as needed but at least every three months

    Dylan by Landon - Dog Grooming Flickr Photo

    Courtesy of Landon/Flickr

When it comes to bathing, you can let the pros handle it for a price or do it yourself. Summer time is ideal for outdoor doggy baths because it’s less messy. If you choose to bathe your dog in the tub, be sure to use a non-stick mat to keep your dog from slipping. Don’t use too much water (a few inches is enough) and rinse thoroughly avoiding the dog’s eyes, ears, and nose. Avoid using too warm of water as this can exacerbate any skin irritation your dog may have.

Which dog shampoo should you use?

Antiseptic, deodorizing, conditioning, antimicrobial – there are lots of great shampoos on the market. Choose the type that matches your pet’s needs or have your veterinarian recommend a shampoo.

We stock a wide range of shampoos for dogs. So order one up, grab your dog and just add water! Which dog grooming shampoo do you use? Let us all know by leaving a reply below. Thank you.

Happy bathing,


How to Treat Dry Skin in Dogs and Cats

Shampoos for Dry Skin in Dogs and Cats

Countless surveys have confirmed most pet owners consider their fury friend to be a member of the family. They love them, feed them, and care for their pets when they get sick. In some cases, however, the medical issue cannot be resolved with simple home remedies. A dog or cat owner must then make an appointment with a veterinarian.

Even though it is covered with fur or hair, skin disorders in pets are quite common. Some are chronic and can last for years, even a lifetime, while other are acute and must be treated immediately. Most of the dermatological problems dogs and cats suffer from have a human counterpart. The causal agent is often found in our/their environment.

Symptoms of Dry Skin in Pets

Both cats and dogs will scratch, lick, and bite at an itch, which is perfectly normal. But if this activity becomes persistent, it is time to call his/her veterinarian. Nonstop scratching can result in serious injuries, including redness, inflammation and infection. What may have been a relatively minor issue can become a major one if the problem is ignored.

The medical term for excessive scratching of undamaged skin is pruritus, and it is a symptom of numerous skin disorders. When it affects the skin directly, the most common diagnosis is some form of dermatitis. Because they are less adept at cleaning themselves, dogs are more likely to suffer from these issues than cats.

Causes of Dry Skin in Pets

Most skin or coat problems in pets can be placed in one of the following categories: nutritional, parasitic, environmental, allergic, neurogenic, or infectious. Many occur because a dog or cat has a sensitivity or allergy to something in the food or environment. For example, your pet might be allergic to dust, flea bites, an ingredient of food, or any number of irritants. Excessive scratching often ensues, as well dry, flaky skin and a dull, lackluster coat.

In fact, our canine or feline friend’s coat can be used as a general gauge of health at almost any age. When itching is an issue, the hair or fur may be in a persistent state of stress. The only way to relieve this tension is to treat the symptoms of the dermatitis, whatever they may be. In addition to prescription medications that are specifically designed to address each form of the disease, more general solutions and supplements can help.

Treating Dry Skin in Pets

Parasites, inexpensive pet food, even sunburns can result in dry, red, itchy, uncomfortable skin. Once the underlying issues have been addressed, it may be possible to soothe affected areas with the right shampoo. But before we discuss a few popular brands, it is important to note that cats may not benefit from bathing as much as dogs. In fact, over bathing can actually aggravate their dry skin, since cats are meticulous groomers and may not need to be bathed. However, if your veterinarian recommends bathing, it is often best to use a conditioner to prevent drying out your cat’s skin.

Shampoos for Dry Skin in Pets

Allergroom with Glycotechnology Routine Shampoo for Normal or Dry Skin in Pets

Allergroom is specially formulated for dogs and cats with normal or dry skin. This shampoo is a moisturizing, hypoallergenic cleaner without ingredients which cause drying, such as coal, tar, selenium, or sulfur. It is also free of sensitizing agents, including soaps, detergents, and fragrances. Allergroom is designed for frequent use and is pH controlled to optimize the condition of the skin and coat of your dog or cat. Numerous tests have confirmed this cleaner can protect the skin from environmental damage. It may also help delay the onset of irritation resulting from yeast or topical bacteria.

Aloe & Oatmeal Shampoo and Conditioner for Pets

Designed for pets with sensitive or dry skin, this aloe & oatmeal based shampoo helps soothe irritated or damaged skin. Not only does it infuse much needed moisture, it also gently cleans your pet’s skin and coat without robbing them of the oils they require for general health. Safe for both cats and dogs, Aloe & Oatmeal Shampoo and Coat Conditioner contain moisturizing vitamins, such as A, D, and E.

DermAllay Shampoo and Conditioner Spray for Pets

A gentle cleansing system designed to treat dry, itchy skin in dogs and cats, DermAllay is 100 percent hypoallergenic. It contains safe, soothing moisturizers and ingredients, such safflower oil, sodium lactate, and solubilized oatmeal. When paired with the Conditioner, the duo imparts essential fatty acids, which add moisture to the skin and helps restore a natural, healthy luster to the hair and coat of your furry friend.

Leave us a note in the comments section below if you have any experiences using any of these fine products on your dog or cat. We all would be interested to know what successes you had while using any of these products. Thank you.

Have a squeaky clean day,