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Take a Bite out of Dog Grooming with Oral Care

Posted by Awesome Doggies

If you ask any dog owner what caring for their dog means to them, they’d probably say things like routine vet exams and shots, exercise, brushing their fur, feeding them and clipping their nails. Sadly, many dog owners wouldn’t even think of saying dental care. Yet it is, and should be, a basic part of dog grooming.

What’s more shocking is that by the time they’re three years old, over 80% of dogs have symptoms of periodontal disease. But it’s not only about white teeth and fresh breath. If you don’t take care of your dog’s teeth and gums, the problems that develop will eventually affect your dog’s overall health.

So how do gum and teeth problems start? It begins much the same way it does in us. When your fur-baby eats, bits of food get stuck on his teeth and that means bacteria can form. If you don’t remove it, your pup’s saliva mixes with the food bits and bacteria and creates plaque. The plaque hardens days to become tartar and tartar presents a nice hideaway for more plaque to accumulate. Thus, irritating the gums and causing gingivitis which is gum inflammation. 

And what is gingivitis?

  • Gums getting red and swollen where they meet the teeth.
  • Bad breath
  • Your pooch’s gums bleed

This is the start of periodontal disease. When gingivitis sets in, his gums will pull away from his teeth and that gap could become packed with food and more bacteria, thereby making the problem worse and probably painful. But gingivitis can disappear with a good oral care routine. However, if you don’t treat it, the next stage of periodontal disease—periodontitis—isn’t reversible. In this stage, your furry friend could develop an infection in addition to losing teeth and bone. The bacteria in his mouth could also get into his bloodstream and then spread to his lungs, heart, kidneys and other vital organs.

It’s essential to begin dental care in his life as early as possible, and then keep up the care with a daily schedule for optimum health.

Oral Care Tips

Brush Every Day – As we must do, this is a great way to maintain your buddy’s healthy teeth. Brushing his teeth is a lot like brushing your own and you can even use a human toothbrush with very soft bristles; likewise, your local pet store carries toothbrushes especially made for dogs. If you’d rather not use a conventional toothbrush, try using a small brush that fits on your index finger; it’s called a finger toothbrush and might be easier to move around your dog’s mouth. However, you must never use human toothpaste on your canine’s teeth. Why? Our toothpaste contains detergents and fluoride. Dogs don’t have the ability to spit as we (and camels) do; they would end up swallowing the toothpaste which could cause harm to them. We have other articles that go more into depth about how to brush your dog's teeth.

Healthy Diet – Yes, what you feed your pooch has a lot to do with how healthy his teeth and gums are. Sounds familiar, right? Dry food can assist in maintaining clean teeth by decreasing the amount of tartar and plaque that accumulates on his teeth. Pedigree Food for Dogs is terrific because it has an X-shaped kibble. This shape was created to help clean

your canine’s teeth as he chews—right down to his gum line! Furthermore, Pedigree DentalStix is a fantastic treat or snack to feed him; his tartar build-up will be diminished by up to 80%!

There isn’t a dog out there that doesn’t adore table scraps. Yet our food will heighten the accumulation of plaque and tartar on your furry friend’s teeth not to mention provide him with extra calories he doesn’t need. So, no matter how much he might beg, no table scraps!

Give Your Pooch the Proper Toys – Don’t let him play with toys that are extremely hard; these toys will break his teeth. A good, safe brand of dog toy is Kong and nylon bones are a better choice than the knuckle bones.

Routine Veterinary Cleanings and Exams – Besides brushing your fur-baby’s teeth, it’s important for him to see your vet for routine dental cleanings and exams. Your vet can discover and provide treatment for any issues prior to them becoming serious problems.

Now you know just how critical good oral hygiene is for your beloved dog and following these tips are a great way to ensure his teeth and gums remain healthy just like the rest of him. Also, don’t forget that a groomer, such as ourselves, provide special care like brushing your pooch’s teeth and oral irrigation. So please contact us today or ask for more details at your next appointment.

Holiday Cheer Can Be 'Re-gifted' for a Great Cause

Posted by Awesome Doggies

As 2016 comes to a close, and holiday spirit is in the air, we are grateful to work with so many awesome Fur Babies and Pet Parents. And we're inspired to give back.
Right after the holidays, our groomers will be starting a Post-Holiday ReGifting Drive to benefit local non-profit Home Start, which operates maternity shelters and a boutique thrift store right here in San Diego.
“How Can I Help?”  you ask...
It's simple. Donate something you receive that isn't 'just right,' instead of returning or regifting it. Our groomers will collect and transport the donated items to Home Start. Shoppers at Home Start's upscale thrift boutique can find a new treasure that's perfect for them. And homeless moms will benefit from the proceeds.

Home Start is a non-profit organization whose mission is to prevent child abuse and neglect, strengthening at-risk families in San Diego. They provide housing and support for young women who are homeless, pregnant, or parenting small children, many of whom come from traumatic backgrounds themselves. The boutique provides a way for these young women to obtain employment experience and develop work skills in a safe, positive place.

Our Post-Holiday ReGifting Drive is an opportunity to support Home Start’s mission by re-purposing those holiday gifts that aren’t the perfect size, color or fit. Did you receive baby or children’s clothing that is too small? Pass it along! Gently used items may also be donated.
The boutique especially needs quality men's clothing right now, but all donations are greatly appreciated.
•    Finer Clothing & Shoes - for men, ladies, children & babies
•    Jewelry, Ties & Accessories
•    Kitchen & Household Items
If you'd like to participate in our ReGifting Drive to benefit Home Start, please collect all donations and give them to your groomer at your next regular grooming appointment. We will be collecting through mid-February.

(Please be mindful that we operate in a fur-filled environment, so bag or wrap items as needed to protect them from loose hair, and provide protection for anything fragile.)

Thanks for your support!

Tips From A Dog Groomer: Recognizing Pet-Parent Separation Anxiety

Posted by Awesome Doggies

Congratulations, you're a new pet-parent. This isn't a responsibility you take lightly. You did the research to select the perfect pet, prepared carefully before bringing her home, have spent time bonding, and conscientiously arranged all aspects of care for your adorable new family member. But is there such a thing as caring too much? Well not really - there's no such thing as too much love. But if your heart pounds at the thought of your baby being out of site, even just for the hour or so it takes to get spiffed up in our mobile salon, you probably have pet-parent separation anxiety.mobile-dog-grooming-san-diego

Don't worry, you're not alone. Many dog moms and dads report experiencing the same issue, and it's easier to recognize than you think.

Below are 5 signs you have pet-parent separation anxiety:

  1. Pre-separation: It's happened to the best of us. You're on the computer, making preparations for a mandatory work trip. All of a sudden you realize puppy can't go with you. The next thing you know you're sobbing and breathing into a paper bag. Alright, maybe it's not quite that dramatic, but you did tear up a little. If the mere thought of leaving your baby with a pet-sitter for a few days causes a lump in your throat, you're at risk of separation anxiety.
  2. If puppy can't go I'm not going: Did you choose your last hand-bag with the sole purpose of sneaking your baby into stores that are less than pet-friendly? If you've been asked on more than one occasion why your purse is barking, you definitely have an issue with separation. 
  3. Dog park drama: Do you avoid off-leash parks because you fear puppy-face venturing off too far? If you're ready to ignite a full on Amber alert because your princess wasn't within arms reach for more than thirty seconds, it's definitely time admit you have a problem.
  4. Another picture?: "I just have to show you the picture I took of my puppy sleeping last night. Oh, and here's one of him walking, and that's him getting a drink from his new bowl." Are you guilty of not having enough memory in your phone because it's full of pictures of your pet simply existing? There's no argument that your baby is beyond adorable, but it probably takes a few chains and a pack of wild horses to pull you away from him.
  5. He likes you better: Does that sound like something you've said before? Do you feel like your dog doesn't love you when he jumps in someone else's lap? If you're prepared to end a five-year relationship because your fur-baby gives all your attention away, you might have a the slightest problem. 

If you relate to most or all of these signs, you definitely experience anxiety about leaving your pet. When you stress, your dog stresses. We all wish we never had to leave our babies, but sometimes it's necessary - for the well being of your pet as well as for you. Easing separation anxiety is challenging, but not impossible. Taking baby-steps toward stress free separation is good for you and your pet. Start with a few minutes and then work up to being apart a few hours at a time. After all, as the saying goes, 'absence makes the heart grow fonder,' and those welcome back kisses and joyful greetings are a pleasure not to be missed!

To talk about this, or anything else doggie-wise, please contact us. Thanks for reading.

Guidelines for Bathing Water-Phobic Dog

Posted by Awesome Doggies

Part of owning a dog is making sure it’s regularly bathed. Unfortunately, most dogs are not fans of baths, so it can be challenging to get them to cooperate. In fact, it’s common for many dogs to be so terrified that they scoot underneath beds as soon as they see their owners get out bath towels or run water. If you have a dog that hates baths, here are some guidelines for bathing dogs that are afraid of water....because usually they aren't afraid of the water, they're afraid of the experience.

Add Toys to Bathwater

Why not toss some of your dog’s favorite toys into the bathwater to make bathing more fun? This way, your dog can link bathing with playtime with you rather than something that has to be endured. It can also be helpful to include a few small treats during the bathing process as this can give Fido a positive image.mobile-dog-grooming-san-diego

Let Your Dog Get Used to the Tub

Don’t just throw a new puppy or dog into a tub of water for the first time and expect your pet to adjust automatically.

  • Before filling your tub, let your dog examine it. Consider that a bathtub can seem less threatening when a dog has the opportunity to sniff and explore it when it’s empty.
  • Once you do start running water, do so gradually, only adding a small amount at first and not spraying your pet. As your puppy or dog gets used to the water, you can add more water.
  • Likewise, if you’re bathing your dog in a shower, allow your furbaby to inspect the floor of the shower before spraying water on it.

Outdoor Bathing

Tub bathing generally works well for most small dogs, but it can be hard to lift larger breeds into a tub. Even worse, lifting a large dog can injure your back. Therefore, if your dog weighs 55 pounds or more, you probably won’t be giving it tub baths. Besides indoor showers, you could wash your dog outdoors by using a hose, weather permitting.

  • Keep your dog on a leash during the bathing process. This is especially critical for outdoor bathing so that a dog cannot escape.
  • Select a spot in your yard that won’t easily become muddy.
  • You could even give your dog a bath on a deck.
  • Is your dog afraid of a hose? Consider using use a kiddie pool, which is inflatable and inexpensive.

Considerations and Warnings

  • If your dog has a skin problem, it could be caused from using the wrong shampoo, so your vet may need to prescribe a particular medicated brand.
  • Be sure that the water is at a comfortable temperature that is neither too cold nor too warm. Contrary to what you may have been told, using very warm water can shock a dog. The best temperature is lukewarm water.
  • Because tubs are usually slick, use a tub mat to prevent slipping.
  • Does your dog shiver at the sight of water gushing out of a hose? Even in summer, it may be best to give a tub bath or use a shower.
  • Don’t give your dog a bath when it's stressed, which can be from anything from thunder to visiting the vet.
  • What if you dog bites? If so, you’ll need to use a mouth guard. Ask your vet how to safely insert it.
  • There’s no set rule on how often to bathe a dog, but most vets recommend giving a dog a bath at least once a month. Don't bathe your pet more than once a week, unless your vet has told you to do.
  • If you do bathe your dog more than once monthly, always use a moisturizing or soap-free shampoo so that you don’t dry out the skin.
  • Thoroughly rinse all the soap from your dog’s fur and skin by flushing it out with fresh water. Besides having less flaking, this can also help in keeping your pet clean longer.

Still feeling overwhelmed? Let the professional pet groomers at Awesome Doggies do the job. You don’t even have to leave your home as we provide high quality mobile pet grooming. Please contact us and learn more about our wide range of pet grooming services.

How To Bathe The Notoriously Water-Hating Dachshund

Posted by Awesome Doggies

dachshund-dog-bathingDachshunds are among the most popular dog breeds in the world. And for good reason! Their distinctive shape, loyalty, and goofy personalities make them a joy to have around. However, they are among the most water-phobic of all dog breeds and will fight against baths with all their strength.

Thankfully, it is possible to bathe a struggling dachshund with little difficulty. It requires a careful approach that understands the nature of the dachshund and adapts bathing to their needs.

Only Their "Preferred" Human Should Bathe Them

Dachshunds are typically friendly dogs, but they often bond with one human very closely, at the expense of others. As a result, they may rebel when anyone but their preferred human bathes them. Being bathed by their favorite person will calm their nerves and make the process a lot easier for everyone.

However, if their favorite person can't bathe them (for example, if they are elderly and have a hard time standing at the sink for half an hour), and you want to do this yourself, try stationing the dog's favorite human within seeing and hearing distance of the bathing area. Have them speak soothingly to the dog, pet it when they can, and keep it calm. This will avoid a lot of escape attempts and keep everyone relatively dry. If you prefer to use a professional groomer, use the same person every time whenever feasible.

Keep The Water Comfortably Warm

Extreme temperature changes bother dachshunds. You may have already noticed the way they turn their nose and scamper back inside when it is freezing or blazing outside. Their small stature makes these temperature changes too extreme, which is why we  need to keep the water comfortably warm when bathing.

Remember, though, that dogs have a higher body temperature than humans: that's why they are so warm when they snuggle up on your lap. So use water that is just slightly above comfortably warm for you, as this will make it more appropriate for your pup.

Let Them Hold A "Baby" Toy

Like many dogs, dachshunds prefer having another dog or two around as a companion. If they don't have other canines to connect with, they may build a unique relationship with a favorite toy. These toys are the dachshund's “baby” and they often obsess over it in a way they never do with other toys. They may clean it constantly and hold it between their paws, rather than chew on or destroy it.

If your dachshund has a “baby” toy, let them hold it while bathing them. You can either put it near them on the sink counter or let them hold it in their mouth. This should calm their nerves a little and distract them from the bathing.

Encourage Playful Run Drying

Dachshunds are very playful dogs, and after you've towel dried them, you might want to encourage them to run around until they dry. A professional would blow dry them, but the type of dryer you have at home is not up to the task. Just encourage your doggie to run around by playfully chasing them around the house - it's an awful lot of fun. Playing with your silly dachshund is one of the best ways to connect with them and is one of the best parts about owning them.

Playing in this way also connects baths with fun and gives them something to look forward to when the bath is over. By tapping into their sense of play, you can even make your dachshund look forward to getting a bath and make them easier to handle the next time. Bathing really doesn't have to be a traumatic experience - it's all about how you handle it.

These steps should help make bathing your dachshund easier. However, if you simply can't get a handle on it (as dachshunds are stubborn little pups), go ahead and contact us. We'll happily do the hard work for you and can get your dachshund clean with no fuss.

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As San Diego mobile groomers for over 10 years, we know how to pamper and groom dogs & cats of all breeds... from a simple bath to a total makeover. Our mobile pet grooming salon is a calm, soothing environment your furry baby will love. Have a grubby pet? What are you waiting for?

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