Brushing your dog
At this time of year, keeping your dog looking his best often seems impossible. Endless mud and soggy grass do nothing good for your carpets and floors let alone your dog. Its also the start of the spring moult when coat turnover increases as dogs shed their heavy winter coats. So, staying on top of their grooming routine is the only way through.
However, it comes with extra benefits, did you know brushing your dog does more than just improve untidy coats and remove matting? It re-distributes the oils in the coat, stimulates circulation in the skin and helps dirt slide off the hair. There is also evidence that grooming reduces heart rate in dogs during and shortly afterwards suggesting dogs may find it relaxing to be groomed. It’s good for owners too, physical contact with dogs, through petting or grooming can elevate serotonin and dopamine levels which are feel-good neurotransmitters. Brushing your dog is also an opportunity to check on general health, look for any changes or developments like lumps and bumps or areas that seem tender.
So (with the exception of the hairless breeds) we recommend a frequent grooming schedule, using appropriate brushes and grooming tools specific to your dog. Keep the sessions calm but enjoyable, in a quiet setting so both you and your dog can concentrate, and for the pile of fur that builds up, here are some suggestions of how to reuse it:
- Offer it to the birds for insulating their nests
- As a fertiliser, it will take some time to decompose but is rich in nitrogen
- Pest control, the fur can help keep pests away from prized plants
- Craft with it, either spin and knit as wool or sew and stuff dog toys.