Cool tools for fur brushing, By Ashita Mathew

Most pet parents are not sure what brushes are to be used to keep their dog’s coat healthy, and they complain that they brush every day but the shedding does not stop or the coat is matting and refuses to dematt. Here’s how to choose the right brush according to the coat of the dog.

You can mainly classify dog breed into three categories according to their coat: long-coated dogs, short & smooth-coated dogs and wire-haired dogs. Here’s how to select the right brushing tool for your pooch.
Pawfect brushes for long-coated dogs
The right brushes to be used for long coats are slicker brushes, which help to smooth the coat and also remove matts and tangles. Slicker brushes are typically made from very thin metal wire, and they are mounted on a soft foam or rubber mat. They can be square, rectangular, circular or oval in shape. They help to release dirt particles and loose hair from the animal allowing for a healthy, shiny coat. Care should be taken not to press the slicker brush on the coat of the dog as this may result in brush rashes and can also damage your dog’s skin. Do not use the slicker brush on the face and around the genital areas; instead use a plastic comb for the face and around private areas.
If the long-coated dog has no matts and is dirt free, then a pin brush can be used to remove the loose hair and to keep the coat from matting further.
Examples of long coated breeds are Shih Tzu, Lhasa Apso, Cocker Spaniel, and Golden Retriever.
Pawfect brushes for short & smooth-coated dogs
Short-coated dogs also need regular brushing as they shed a lot of hair almost every day. The best tool to use for deshedding for short coats is a deshedding loop or sheddender (for example, furminator). These help to remove the loose hair from the dogs’ coat. Deshedding can be done once a week. A bristle brush can also be used to remove dirt and excess loose hair. Make sure you do not press into the skin as they can injure the dog. Also make sure you do not do the same area too many times as they can lead to brush rash. The deshedding tools should not be used around the genial areas or on the face.
Examples of short and smooth-coated breeds are Labrador Retriever, Beagle, Bassett Hounds, Great Danes, Boxers, etc.
Pawfect brushes for wire-haired dogs
A firm bristle brush combined with slicker brush can be used on a wire-haired dog. Bristle brushes are available with synthetic and natural bristles, with the natural bristles gentler and generally more effective on the dog’s coat. Again, make sure you do not use slicker on the face and private parts of the dog.
How often you should brush your dog’s hair?
Brushing your dog regularly helps in removing all the loose hair, helps in better blood circulation and a healthier coat. The frequency of brushing your dog depends on the length and texture of the dog’s coat. For short-haired dogs, you can brush once a week, while for a longer-coated dog you need to brush 2-3 times a week, especially during the shedding period. Long-haired dogs will mostly require brushing every day to avoid matts and knots in the coat.
Once brushing your dog becomes a routine, you will see the difference in the coat which will be healthy and clean, it also helps to bond with your pooch and soon he will look forward to brushing every day.
Happy brushing to all you pet parents!
(Ashita Mathew runs Wags & Wiggles Pet Salon & Spa in Bengaluru).