Because of the quickly growing a coat of the Poodle, a trim and bath are usually necessary every six to eight weeks. If you have decided that you are going to be the one to take care of the coat, rather than a professional groomer, certain supplies must be on hand.
For basic brushing, the pin-bristled brush does the best job.
Make sure that the bristles are straight, not curved, and set fairly widely apart on a rubber base. Brushes with curved, widely spaced bristles can damage the Poodle coat. A slicker brush that is long in shape and has fine, closely set wires with a slight bend at the tips is recommended for ridding the coat of mats and tangles.
A coarse-toothed steel comb and a fine-toothed comb complete the list of tools needed to keep the coat unsnarled.
Clipping the coat requires the use of an electric clipper, preferably one with interchangeable blades. A small animal clipper is highly recommended by professional groomers as it is lightweight and easily handled.
The blades vary in size according to the area of the Poodle body that is to be clipped, with the number of the blade designating how much hair it removes. The higher the number, the more hair it clips off.
It must be noted that these blades can get quite hot during clipping and burn the dog’s skin, so it is recommended that you also purchase a spray lubricant designed to cool and lube the blades. Of course, you could also use hand clippers, but they are much more difficult than the electric to operate, and the entire clipping procedure will take quite a bit longer. Several sharp scissors will also be needed to apply the finishing touches to the look of the coat.
When you begin grooming your poodle, his hindquarter region is a good place to start. By beginning here, the dog cannot see what is occurring behind him, and he should not become nervous or annoyed. Remember, it is a very good rule to accustom your dog to the entire grooming procedure prior to attempting any major clipping.
He should be well trained enough so that he will obey your “stay” commands while he is on the grooming table. Make it clear from the start that grooming is to be taken seriously. The procedure should neither be a game nor a wrestling match for either of you.
Begin your grooming routine by first looking for any mats or tangles. Carefully work your fingers through the coat, then repeat the procedure using the fine-toothed comb.
If you should find a mat, use your slicker brush or a matting comb. The coat should be brushed up and then down to loosen the matted hairs. Applying a tangle remover to the coat may also help to ease the problem.
In any case, mats must be removed prior to the bath to avoid further tightening.
Once you have finished brushing the hindquarters, begin brushing out the hind legs with quick, short, up and down strokes. Repeat the procedure with the front legs.
After the legs are completely tangle-free, begin brushing the body, starting at the back end and working up to the neck region.
Brush underneath the body, making sure you give this area a proper amount of attention as it is a prime area for matting.
The head and ears should be done with great care, as these delicate areas provide much of the Poodle beauty if groomed properly.
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