Do you want to know how to give a dog a haircut? Well you have come to the right place.
Learning new things as a dog parent is often confusing. Even when you think you know what you are doing, you will sometimes find a new or better way to do it. This is why I wanted to help you by giving you the simplest way how to give a dog haircut at home.
If you are asking yourself why you should have to go through the long process of bathing, trimming and grooming your dog, here are some statistics.
To start with, if your dog has long and/or curly fur then you will be broke very, very soon. Even if your dog sports short fur, regular visits to the dog groomer can become a pain in your wallet.
Furthermore, alone in the US, there are hundreds of dog abuse cases that go unreported. Poor handiwork, intentional cutting, using the wrong method to groom the dog- you name it.
Since I believe that no good pet parents would ever want their furry babies to go through something like that, I have made it my goal to inform you about the correct way to take care of your dog.
Obviously, I do not intend to demonize dog grooming salons and every dog owner should choose on their own what they see best fit for their beloved pet.
So now to the first step in learning how to give a dog a haircut: bathing.
Where should I bath my dog?
If you are living in a cold country, don’t have an “outdoor” area, or it is winter in your area, you definitely have to bathe your dog indoors.
Depending on the size of your dog you should either bathe them inside the sink or the bathtub/shower stall.
Small dog owners have a little bit of an advantage here: they can be bathed in a sink. Well, the dogs at least. If you can fit your whole body into a sink then that is some amazing skill.
Like it was mentioned above, if you have a medium to large sized dog it may be a bit harder.
Make sure to close the bathroom door so your favourite canine can’t “escape” and leave a trail of mess in your home.
How to bathe your dog
- Brush your dog carefully before a bath. Like this, you can make sure you got out all mats and tangles.
- Use lukewarm water. Try not to use too hot or cold water as it may be unpleasant for your doggo.
- Use DOG shampoo. I know that we save at nothing to make sure our pets are loved and safe. Using dog shampoo is a great way to do that. It doesn’t dry their skin as a human shampoo would. Put a walnut-sized amount in your hand, and gently massage into your dog’s fur. Make sure not to get any soap into their eyes.
- Rinse all soap/shampoo out. Any leftover liquid in your dog’s fur will irritate their skin later one.
- Use a soothing tone. Make sure your dog feels safe. For quite some time your dog may act like your dragging them off for torture, but eventually, they will learn that bathing can actually be fun.
- Air-dry. If you really, really need to use a blow dryer, use it ONLY on the lowest wind and heat setting and far away from your dogs’ sensitive ears. The best thing to do is wrap them in a warm, fluffy towel and cuddle, cuddle, and cuddle some more.
- Reward them. Give them treats and maybe play a little bit with them. After a shower, they will either feel more relaxed or energized.
If your dog suffers from any allergies, please consult your vet first before bathing our dog. They will know best what you and your doggo can do about it and still enjoy nice baths.
Getting them used to grooming tools
First of all, you need to make sure your dog trust you 100%. I am sure they already do as only great pet owners constantly want to improve themselves to help make their best friends lives easier.
Show them the tools.
Let them sniff comb and scissors. Then turn on your automatic trimmer next to them so that they can get used to the sound.
Generally, this should not take longer than a minute or two, your dogs should only get an idea.
Then, switch on some relaxing music for both of you. This doesn’t have to be Mozart or Beethoven. It is whatever you two like, as long as your dog can associate it with positive feelings.
Break down the sessions
Have you ever had a list of to-do things for home, yet you didn’t feel like doing them all at once? I would usually spread them towards the morning and the evening, as I am most productive there. For your dogs, it may be good to do the same.
Start by dividing your grooming sessions into smaller parts in order to make it easier for both of you.
Remember to have patience
After making sure your dog has recharged for round 2 of grooming, you can get out the comb and scissors and possibly the trimmer if you want to.
As long as your dog doesn’t get dirty in the time between sessions, you can take your time.
Now for the last step in learning how to give a dog a haircut, we have the actual haircut process. Don’t worry it’s not as complicated as you may think. Just remember to keep a calm hand and a cool character.
Does my dog need a haircut?
As mentioned above, especially dogs with long and/or curly hair are subject to this. If you are the lucky owner of one of those, or your dog just generally loves rolling around in the mud or otherwise getting themselves dirty, then yes, very much so.
Without regular haircuts, your dog will have matted fur which would be annoying for both of you. Not to mention, if various bugs and other not/so/nice/things could get stuck in them.
DO NOT cut your dogs hair like this:
- Never trim the head or tail. Those two places are some of the most sensitive places on their bodies. If you want to get rid of nasty knots or need to downsize their fluffiness a bit, use scissors and a comb. Using a trimmer could seriously hurt your dog, and we don’t want that to happen.
- Never yell at your dog or turn it into a negative experience for them. For your dog getting a haircut can be seriously stressful at first. Even though it can be maddening sometimes when they run around the house dripping wet or keeping shifting around, please don’t lose your patience. I know you can do this!
- Don’t cut unwashed dog hair. Bathe them early on in the day so that they have enough time to dry. This allows you to cut dog hair way easier and safer.
Always go WITH the direction of the hair growth
Similar to us humans, dogs should get their hair trimmed with the direction of their hair growth. This prevents ingrown hair, irritations and cutting your dog.
…. Use comb and scissors
Use comb and scissors
First of all, if you want to trim the area around their eyes, ears or other sensitive parts (including wounds or cuts) simply opt for the old-fashioned style.
Please only start using these tools after you have generally tried to get the knots out before. Usually, bathing them with a good quality shampoo and combing their hair thoroughly should do the trick.
This was my take on giving advice on how to give a dog a haircut. even though I know learning new things as a pet parent can be difficult at first, with patience, love, and care I am sure that the both of you will conquer and overcome everything.
you can read more about puppy or dog grooming tips in these articles that I wrote. If you want an easy guide for home grooming, you can read this article. Show me a picture of your dogs funniest haircut in the comments. Read you next time!