5 Good Reasons to Brush your Dog

November 13, 2015

dog brush taroBy Laurie Darroch

No matter the type of coat your dog has – long or short, thick or thin – it’s a good idea to brush them on a regular basis. Brushing your dog’s fur is part of a healthy grooming routine that will not only help keep them in good condition, but help prevent other skin or pest problems from becoming debilitating. Here are five good reasons for brushing your dog.

Removes Loose Hair

Although some dogs shed a great deal more than others, brushing can help remove loose fur from any dog. Dogs with double layered thick coats are not the only ones who leave fur all over. Short wiry haired dogs shed it as well. This shed fur ends up all over your furniture, floor and your clothing. Routine brushing will help keep the fur from dropping all over the house.

Health Check

Brushing your dog’s fur provides an opportune time to do an overall health check on their skin and fur. Look for signs of pests such as fleas or ticks, particularly if your dog spends a great deal of time outdoors. With routine brushing, you can find fleas before they spread and make your dog miserable with bites and itching. In the case of ticks, finding these pests quickly during routine brushing can lessen the possibility of contracting something more debilitating such as Lyme Disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, or in extreme cases of tick infestation, anemia. Keeping on top of infestations will also prevent the spread of these pests to other people and things in your house.

While you are brushing your dog, it’s also a good time to check their skin for any cuts or injuries, lumps or unusual lesions, excessively dry skin, or yeast spots that may have an odor.

Brushing Prevents Matting

Matted fur is a magnet that attracts dirt, debris and pests. Matted fur can form around foreign matter such as burs or bits of twigs, or from lack of brushing, particularly on dogs with long hair. Once mats have formed, they can make it painful for a dog to have their fur brushed.  Trying to brush out a chunk of matted fur can not only pull out the matted fur but living fur as well, and that hurts your dog. Matted fur usually has to be cut off or shaved off. It is better to prevent this extreme measure by keeping your dog’s fur brushed on a regular basis and removing any small matted areas before they become huge snarled matting that requires removing large areas of fur to get rid of them.

dog brushedBonding

Initially, some dogs are resistant to brushing; they may spend more time wriggling around to avoid it or trying to see what you are doing rather than staying still while you brush their fur. Once they learn that brushing is a pleasant bonding experience with you, they will probably look forward to the brushing sessions. If your dog is resistant to being brushed, try making it something positive for them by including a handful of CANIDAE dog treats as part of the session, or as a reward for sitting still while they are getting brushed.

Not only is brushing good quiet time for bonding with your dog, it is calming for both of you. The warmth and one-on-one interaction can reduce stress in both of you. Your dog will enjoy the loving attention, and it relaxes both of you.

Hair and Skin Conditioning

Brushing your dog’s fur distributes the oils over their skin and fur. Brushing aerates the fur and skin as well. Good circulation to their coat and the underlying skin will help keep your dog’s coat healthy and shiny.

Helping your dog maintain a healthy coat is part of your job as a responsible pet owner. Prevention is the best way to stop any possible related problems from occurring, so be sure to brush your dog on a regular basis to help keep them in tip top shape!

Top photo by Taro the Shiba Inu/Flickr
Bottom photo by slgckgc/Flickr

Read more articles by Laurie Darroch

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