Pantops Pet Salon
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Pantops Pet Salon & Spa
Charlottesville's Professional Dog Grooming

It's what we do -- it's all we do.

(434) 293-2424
Fax: (434) 293-8231
504 Pantops Center
Charlottesville, VA 22911

Grooming the Senior Dog

Tuesday, November 8th, 2005 by Mike Cronk

The grooming process usually takes two or three hours–most of it requiring your dog to stand still and, at times, on three legs while one is being trimmed or brushed. As dogs get older and often arthritic, this process can eventually cause stress and discomfort. If it is determined to be too stressful we, of course, will stop. As dogs enter this phase of life, here’s what you need to do:

  1. Brush and comb frequently. This helps prevent matting. Instead of a full body brushing weekly, do 1/4 every other day. Waiting 10-12 weeks for an appointment with us is too long. Older dogs can not tolerate prolonged brushing of very thick coats and the owner must get involved.
  2. Keep the coat short. Shorter coats require minimal brushing and discomfort. Your pets appearance will have to take a backseat to health and well being.
  3. Groom frequently. Frequent brushing that is light and of short duration beats being tugged at for hours on a table. Since grooming does become more stressful as dogs get older, owners are tempted to put it off as long as possible. Big mistake!
  4. Stick with your groomer. We feel much more comfortable with a dog we have been grooming for years. We know them; they know us. Since we know where they have been, we are wiser on how they can handle where they are going. We do not accept first-time senior dogs unless they are new to the area.

The bottom line is our senior citizen will require frequent owner involvement and an effort on our part to make the visit as gentle and caring as possible.

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