Natural grooming and skin care is an important part of caring for your canine companion. Different breeds of dogs require different amounts of care to keep them clean, comfortable and healthy. Dust and debris trapped in your dog’s fur can contain unhealthy contaminants from the surrounding environment, and predispose the skin to irritation. When the animal grooms itself some of these toxic debris can be ingested.
The skin is your dog’s largest organ. It provides the animal with a layer of protection. The skin protects the body against pathogens, as well as protecting the underlying tissues including bones, muscles, ligaments and organs. Other functions of the skin include temperature regulation, insulation, and synthesis of vitamin D. Toxins and metabolic waste products are eliminated by the skin.
Regular whole body brushing is the best way to promote healthy skin. Brushing removes dirt and debris and stimulates the skin's natural secretions. Use a soft brush at first and keep the initial sessions brief. Most dogs enjoy being brushed and quickly become accustomed to the daily routine. Brushing prevents matted fur and provides a good time for you to examine your dog’s skin for any changes, and inspect for fleas and ticks.
Bathing is also an important part of caring for your dog. It is one of the most effective means of flea control. However, frequent shampooing can dry the skin by removing the natural oils that keep the skin healthy. Unless your dog is very dirty, has a bad flea infestation or a specific skin problem that requires frequent baths, a bath once every month or two is plenty.
When bathing your dog it is important to use a gentle, natural shampoo. Try to avoid shampoos containing synthetic insecticides or other chemicals. If fleas are a problem try a
natural approach to flea control.
Be sure to rinse your pet thoroughly after bathing to remove any soap residue.
Ok, your dog's coat looks great....but what about those teeth?
Click here to learn about dental care for dogs.
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