Koko, the Maltese Shih’zhu Cross – Her First Puppy Groom
This was Koko’s very first groom.
It is recommended that your puppy be introduced to their first professional grooming between 10 to 12 weeks of age.
They have to be introduced to all aspects of a grooming session and this needs to be a positive experience. Luckily, her mum and dad brush, comb, check her ears and feet regularly so she is accustomed to being handled. This is very important to do with your puppy from the very start. It’s not only an excellent bonding exercise but you get to keep a check on the health of their coat, skin, teeth, ears and feet.
This helps make visits to the vet or groomers much less stressful for your fur baby.
For Koko’s first groom she was actually given a mini groom (see below) because she will still have her puppy coat till she’s around 1 year old. With a puppy/mini groom I start as always with a good brush and comb to remove all knots and mats. Then I trimmed her nails and cleaned her ears.
Grooming Equipment for a Puppy Groom
Next was the introduction to the clippers to do her delicate/sanitary areas (under her front legs, groin, belly, paw pads and bottom.)
This was done slowly, initially, holding running clippers next to the areas but not actually touching them. When she stayed still and accepted the clippers she was rewarded. This is a little time consuming but well worth it in the long run. You have to earn their trust.
Now, she was ready for her bath which I was informed by her mum she was happy to have. The next challenge was the introduction to the dryer, a lot of dogs are not a fan (ha ha). I was so lucky because Koko was great with it. After drying, I then trimmed and tidied her feet, body, face and tail. You can definitely clip a puppy coat you just need to be aware that the hair grows back as an adult coat not quite as soft and fluffy. It is a personal choice.
I was so lucky that Koko is handled regularly by her parents because her first grooming experience went by like a breeze, for Koko and me.
A plus side is that now she’s always so happy to see me (and the treats, of course).