As a responsible pet parent, ensuring that your pup is comfortable and relaxed when visiting the groomers is incredibly important.
Whether you’ve just adopted an anxious pooch or your long-time friend has started to show signs of stress during their regular trips to the salon, there are things you can do to help ease their worries and ensure they have a positive experience each time they get groomed.
Read on for tips on how to help your dog overcome anxiety at the groomers so you can both look forward to a trip to the doggie salon!
Help Your Dog Overcome Anxiety at the Groomers
Get Your Dog Used to Being Handled
To make sure your dog is comfortable being handled–having their feet, ears, and head touched by the groomer–practice at home.
Since your dog will likely be getting a nail trim, make they aren’t nervous about having their feet touched. You can give your pet a “foot massage” and touch their paw pads and nails.
You’ll also want to brush your dog and gently handle their ears to make sure this is something they become used to.
The goal is to let them know they are safe and not being hurt. You don’t want them to pull away from or nip at the groomer when sensitive areas like feet or ears are being groomed.
Exercise Your Dog Beforehand
Exercise can be a great way for your pup to release some of its energy and get ready for a grooming appointment.
Take your dog on a long walk or engage them in a game of fetch before the visit. This will not only tire them out, but can act as a positive distraction that helps keep their mind off the upcoming experience.
The more fatigued your pup is, the calmer and less anxious they will be. You can combine this tip with the ones below to further support your pup. The combination of physical and mental fatigue can help put your pup in a more relaxed state.
Introduce Your Dog to the Environment Slowly
When you first take your pup to the groomer, don’t just drop them off and leave. Bring them inside the facility, and spend some time with them so they can get accustomed to the environment and people. Let them sniff around and explore a bit before leaving them.
This will help them feel more comfortable and secure and can even create a positive association with the groomers that can be beneficial in the future. Try to do this every time you take your pup for a groom.
Bring Comforting Items From Home
When you take your pup to the groomers, bring a few items from home that will help keep them calm and comforted.
A well-loved toy or their favorite treats can go a long way in helping ease your pup’s worries. If there is something else that helps keep them relaxed, such as a blanket or piece of clothing with your scent on it, bring that too.
Talk to Your Groomer
Your groomer should be aware of your pup’s anxiety so they can take the necessary steps to keep them comfortable during their visit. Be sure to talk to them beforehand and tell them what your pup needs or if anything specific triggers their anxiety. This will go a long way in helping the groomer provide your pup with the best possible experience.
They can try different techniques to help keep your pup calm, such as keeping them distracted with treats or providing a quiet space to rest. Understanding your pup’s needs will make the entire experience more comfortable and enjoyable for everyone involved.
Try Calming Treats and Other Aids
You can try calming aids like pheromone sprays or calming chews. These products can help reduce your pup’s stress level and provide extra comfort. It might take some trial and error, but you should be able to find something that works for your pup.
CBD products, such as oils and treats, can also be a great way to help reduce your pup’s anxiety level. Research has shown that CBD can help ease anxiety and provide a calming effect, making them ideal for anxious or stressed dogs. Talk to your vet about incorporating CBD into your pup’s routine before you take them to the groomer.
When shopping for CBD products for your dog, look for ones made specifically for pets and that contain only natural ingredients. CBD treats for dogs are often a great option for those looking for an all-natural, safe, and effective product, rather than a prescription medication. You can also find CBD oils and balms that you can use directly on your pup’s skin.
Reward Good Behavior
Positive reinforcement is a great way to help your pup build a positive association with the groomers. When your pup behaves calmly, reward them with verbal praise and treats. This will reinforce good behavior and help them understand that grooming appointments can be enjoyable experiences.
It’s also important to remember that anxiety levels can vary from dog to dog. Some pups may respond better to a particular technique, so adjust your approach. With patience and practice, you can help your pup get through their grooming appointments without stress or anxiety.
By following these tips and working with your groomer, you’ll make the entire experience more positive for you and your pup.
And with time and consistency, your pup will learn that going to the groomer isn’t something to be scared of, but rather a fun and comfortable experience.
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