Groomming and De-matting

 

Grooming plays a very important part of caring for your animals. It is best to start when your dog or cat is still young and do a little at a time, especially if they are very wriggly. 

Start grooming for short periods of time, gradually building up the amount of time until your animal is quite happy with you grooming them. Whilst doing this, lift up their tail, lift and touch their paws and check between their toes. Use a wide toothed comb to gently remove the under-coat from your pet; with long haired breeds it is advisable to do this on a daily basis to prevent knots. A thick, matted coat can also make your pet overheat in hot weather and can contribute to heat stroke. It is also important to check the skin for fleas, ticks and any redness which may require treatment.

Some pets, especially cats, get very distressed when their owner tries to groom them which can lead to the build-up of knots and areas of matted coat. If your pet's coat does get matted, you can make an appointment for it to come into the surgery for the day where a sedative can be given and the coat can be de-matted, or in some severe cases be clipped off.

It is also a good idea to check nails, teeth, skin, ears, nose and feet when grooming, so that your pet gets used to being handled and will help to make the experience of seeing a vet less worrying for them. When checking the nails, look out for nails that are too long, too sharp or broken. Nails can be clipped at a nurse appointment if necessary.

When checking teeth, look for tartar, smelly breath, red gums or broken teeth. For more information about dental disease see the pages on dental health and dental disease.

When checking skin and ears, make sure that ears are nice and clean, no wax is seen and there are no red or sore patches. If you are at all worried, please contact the surgery.