If you can imagine the water in this photo actually being oil, only a far smaller amount, you can see how incredibly important having some length of coat can be to a dog in order to maintain balance in moisture levels and to protect the delicate skin mantle and it’s microbiome.
This is one of the foundational reasons why it’s so important to use a gentle yet effective cleanser that’s not overly stripping and one with protein or mineral enriched formulation.
It is principally vital the understand that while we want a beautifully clean and crisp coat for tool work, it’s the skin’s moisture level that keeps the dog in a state of balance and health just as much as the length and upkeep of its hair coat￼.
As a final step to nearly every bathing procedure, it is equally important always follow up with a thorough conditioning step as a final process before considering the bathing completed.
Our cleansers remove vital oil and beneficial bacteria from the skin surface right along with the built up oil, dead hair, and pathogens or secondary bacteria which don’t best suit microbiome balance￼.
We should work to replace those natural moisture levels in order to not disrupt the skin environment too greatly.
Moisture becomes a greater concern￼ in times of the year during seasonal change and when the weather is cold and forced air heat is used in homes.
Simple dryness is one of the most common causes of secondary itching, dandruff and a host of other issues which follow soon behind.
As groomers we will begin to see cases of pruritis or generalized itching across-the-board with pets that are not adequately remoisturized or reconditioned following the bathing process if they are groomed frequently, just as much as we see cases of itching and a host of secondary issues that are caused by lack of grooming and coat upkeep.
In these situations, as with so many other things- less is more, and balance is key.￼