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November 2020

Another Facet of This Pandemic for Groomers

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All of the puppies sold and dogs adopted during a pandemic add up to a whole generation of dogs entering into pet homes without proper socialization. 

At home stays means in-person training programs are off the menu, as well as puppy socialization get-togethers and classes.

Not even being able to have friends over means all of these pets have had very limited interaction with anyone outside of their immediate family unit and only inside their own homes.

 

So for us as groomers that means we’re going to be caring in the next few months for a whole lot of puppies that haven’t been socialized, adult dogs Who already had baggage when they entered into the rescue or shelter system, that have now been living in a very small bubble, and are likely going to be completely overwhelmed when they are put up on our grooming table.

 

Understanding canine behavior and body language and being willing to slow down to get these dogs started off on the right foot is always of paramount importance. But thanks to the pandemic there’s a new element of pretty much no socialization across-the-board that we will have to learn to navigate.

 

#themindfulgroomer


Dealing With Dry Eyes

Dealing With Dry Eye

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Eyes use tears as a method of naturally cleansing and hydrating the surface of the eyes. 

Dogs with larger eyes generate more tear production, and therefore are more prone to both weepy eyes and then dry eyes they age.

 

Typically we have to clean up around the eye area quite a bit due to tear drainage and environmental pathogen accumulation, but as groomers we also see a lot of dogs with dry eyes, especially as part of the aging process.

In these instances we can have different presenting symptoms that have to be addressed during the grooming visit.

Eyes void of tears or moisture are *extremely sensitive*, painful, present a host of serious visual symptoms, and can put the dog on high alert due to the pain.

 

Aside from communicating what we see to our pet owners in hopes that they will remedy the situation on a medical level, there’s a few things we need to do in the salon when working alongside these symptoms.

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During the bathing process we have to remember that a dry eyes will not have the surface lubricated adequately. This means that when we get shampoo in the eyes, there’s really no place for it to go except directly against the eyeball and lid membrane it’s self. 

 

This could create a world of trouble & a lot of pain! 

 

I highly recommend with dogs that have crusty eyes that we first wet the face with adequate water and use a mild face cleanser as we *gently* clean up the eye area and then immediately rinse before moving on with bathing the rest of the dog.

 

Once the bath and rinsing is done I highly recommend a lubricating eyedrop be applied to each eye before moving to the drying process.

 

Some groomers prefer mineral oil and that is personal preference. 

However mineral is messy and it can actually cause water-based shampoo to ride around on the surface of the eye opposite the oil, and redeposit under the lid possibly causing severe ulceration.

 

When  you have finished grooming, it’s very important for you to check the moisture level on the surface of the eye and carefully remove any hair splinters or particles that came into contact with the eyeballs or lids during the haircutting process.

 

I would never carefully wipe away hair splinters without applying more lubricating eyedrop solution as this can cause severe eye irritation.

 

Without doing this as a final step, it is possible for the hair splinters and any other particular debris to just sit on the eye instead of the adequately rinse away as it normally would.

 

If the owner has eyedrops from the veterinarian, then urge them to reapply once they get home. 

I do not personally recommend administering any type of prescription from the salon storefront due to liability unless their veterinarian has issued a *written consent form* for you to administer in their absence. 

‼️The same goes for medicated shampoo and eardrops!😉

 

More medical info on dry eye, or Keratoconjunctivitis sicca:

 https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-pet/keratoconjunctivitis-sicca-kcs-or-dry-eye-in-dogs

 

#themindfulgroomer


Quick Setting Beard Length

Super quick tip to set in the length of beard hair on the lower jaw. 

Choosing the correctly proportionate length for this in comparison to overall style will help you frame the face, keep the head in total proportion for balance and symmetry, add length & gracefulness to the neck on certain breeds, and keep their beard a little cleaner between visits. 😉

 

#themindfulgroomer

 

 


Groomer Tip! When Clippered Coats Go Bad

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MANY groomers ask me why terrier or terrier mix breeds become fine and lackluster in color as they grow out from clippering. 

 

Well......🤔🤓

 

Harsh guard coat that is actively growing has the highest concentration of pigment deposit. 

The more harsh the texture, the more pigment will reside within the hair shaft.

Melanin (pigment) granules reside deep in the hair shaft along the cortex and beneath the cortical fibrils.

Hair in a resting phase will not be as harshly textured or deeply pigmented as a actively (anagen) phase hair.

 

When you clip hair off above the skin, that only removes the length of coat which is visible to us.

What’s still seated in the hair follicle cup is the remaining length of the hair shaft. 

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As the hair moves into a resting (catagen) phase, the pigment is lessened drastically as is the thickness and texture because the hair is no longer actively growing. 

As this hair is slowly pushed up in the follicle cup it will be fine (having a thinner and more porous cuticle), be poorly colored (lackluster), and usually doesn’t reflect light very well or have gloss/shine.

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As well, repeated clippering of haircoat from long to short also sit in the stratum corny him layer of skin. Thicker skin produces finer/thinner hair.

And as a final consideration, dogs of the Terrier class cycle through coat differently than any other breed class. They do not produce actively growing hair from deeper within the follicle until the resting or dormant phases are adequately removed.

There are a few more facets of this considering hormone/endocrine changes, underlying medical conditions, side effects from medications, the dog’s overall health and being able to maintain core temperature & skin oil/moisture levels, secondary microflora imbalances of the skin’s microbiome, etc. 

But, to get from point A to point B this is the simplest route of general insight into this phenomenon.