Congratulations! It is never too soon to start working with your puppy to get him or her ready for their first grooming experience. In fact, the more you work with the pup, the less stressful the experience will be.
First start with handling your pup. Touch their paws and toes. It will help desensitize them when the groomer or vet has to handle them. Stand your pup on a counter or table to get them off the floor. This will replicate them being up on a grooming or exam table. Supervise this exercise; don’t leave your pup up high where they could jump or fall and injury themselves. Sometimes, if you show the pup the edge of the table/counter, they start to grasp the concept of being off the floor.
Grooming tools should be part of your pup’s collection of welcome items when he or she arrives home. If your pup has a short coat like a lab, get a rubber curry brush or a “Furminator” tool. If you have adopted a furry pup, the first thing to get is a comb. Depending upon your pup’s personality, start combing or brushing them right away. If the pup will stay still, perhaps while you watch TV or relax on the couch, start with the tools and touching the paws. Chances are you won’t get all the way your pet, but comb/brush until they are squirming and then pick up where you left off another day. It’s not the idea of getting pup completely combed out as much as getting them used to being combed or brushed. Pups have super short attention spans (sounds like my son…), so keep the event short.
Combing is super important to keep that pup fluffy. Puppy fur mats very easily and, I doubt you want your pup’s first experience at the groomer to be a complete shave down.
I like to spend some time with the owners at the pup’s first groom discussing what are the best tools suited for the coat and show them how to use the tools. Everything is new to the pup – the clipper, the bath, especially the drying – so it might take a couple of times to get through the whole process. Consistency is really importance in getting your pup used to the grooming process. It’s just like having a permanent toddler. Don’t give up; it may take a few tries…
We love puppies at Serena's Groom Room. Call or stop by a visit. If your pup's not ready for a groom yet, even a visit to meet the groomer and perhaps get a treat, sets your pup up for success!