I admit it: My beauty routines include clipping coupons to save money on shampoo I buy at Target, manicuring my own nails at home, and visiting the Ulta store when I accumulate points to go on a shopping spree. For my dog, however, the sky’s the limit. Why is that?
The why is L-O-V-E and the fact that my heart beats dog® means there is no coming back: I’m hooked on dogs! With all of the health and wellness tips we share on Fidose of Reality, there’s one category on which we’ve not yet shone the spotlight. That category is beauty routines you can share with your dog. As a lifelong dog mom, I’ve been doing these beauty improvements to myself and my dogs for well over two decades. What you are about to read is great for:
- Bonding with your dog;
- Getting your younger dog used to be touched and handled with ease;
- Showing your elderly dog that you love him or her oh so much (and you can check for lumps in the meantime);
- Cold or rainy weather activities;
- Sharing a mommy (or daddy) and me day;
Foot Care with Mani-Pedi
I have a huge confession to make: I’ve never had a professional pedicure. I prefer to do my own feet! That said, I leave it up to the pros (dog groomer) to trim my dog’s nails…for now. In terms of a manicure, most times I do my own nails.
People: Some of my favorite at-home products for nail to build strength for human nails that I like are:
OPI’s AvoDerm Nail and Cuticle Replenishing Oil: I apply this to my cuticles weekly It moisturizes and conditions with an avocado lipid complex.
ProStrong Pro Advanced Fluoride Nail Strengthener: I started using this several years ago after seeing it on QVC. You brush it on your nails daily, it dries in seconds, and provides a fluoride-strengthening quality for stronger nails.
Incoco Nail Polish Strips: Made of 100% real nail polish, Incoco nail appliqués are the easy alternative to liquid polish. You just apply and go. I’ve tried many nail strips and these work really well and last a good week before showing signs of chipping on my nails.
Dogs: Some of my favorite at-home products for dog paw care and maintenance include:
Dr. Harvey’s Organic Healing Cream is a combination of healing herbs in a base of organic shea butter. This cream is used for minor skin irritations, hot spots, rashes, cuts, sunburn and itching. It is great for human bug bites, too! I use it on my dog’s paw pads: They are oh so smooth and soft now. Toss this in your dog’s first aid bag right away. I use this for paw maintenance. I rub it into my dog’s feet twice a week.
For Outside: Pawz, which are natural rubber disposable boots for dogs. Never in a million years did I think I’d have a dog who wore “booties,” but I do. Our pooch is very sensitive to the cold. He loves to play outside in the snow, but snow and ice tend to form in between his toes and pain results. It took us 10 minutes to get Dexter used to wearing Pawz.
Winter Walks and Summer Strolls: Mushers Secret is a barrier, food-grade wax for dog paws/pads that acts as an invisible boot. Developed in Canada for sledding dogs, apply a thin coat on pads and between toes, weekly. It dries in seconds and does not stain, is nontoxic, non-allergenic and ranges from $12-$20 depending on size. This will not stop a dog’s feet from freezing or getting burned, but it is a good protectant.
Nail Care Tip: Dog claws are not used as weapons as they are with felines. However, nails grip the ground in activities of daily living and when dogs run, play, and turn corners. Indoor dogs tend to have nails that need more regular attention than dogs who put a lot of wear on tear on their nails from outdoor play.
Imagine wearing a pair of high heels if you are accustomed to flats or wearing shoes: Now try running in those heels and wearing them 24/7: This is akin to what overgrown nails feel like on a dog. This can also create bone and leg pain, which in the long run, causes serious issues for a dog. Learn to trim your dog’s nails or have a qualified groomer or veterinarian/vet tech perform this necessary duty.
CLICK THIS: Treat the Feet and Other Dog Paw Problems
Brush and Groom
I get my hair trimmed every 8 weeks and my dog gets his groomed every 5 or 6, with a full maintenance every 8 to 10 weeks. We highly recommend finding a good dog groomer with whom you can form a long-term relationship. Know what to look for in a good dog groomer.
CLICK THIS: 10 Myths of Dog Grooming
When I give myself some at-home hair care time, that very same weekend, I do the same for my dog.
People: Here are some of my favorite at-home products to keep hair manageable for people: Keep in mind that like my dog, I have thick hair:
Neutrogena Triple Moisture Silk Touch Leave-In Hair Cream: I apply this to dry hair once or twice a week. It helps my hair stay soft and isn’t heavy or sticky. A little bit goes a long way.
Paul Mitchell Freeze and Shine Super Spray: Great hold, not sticky, not flaky. This thick hair of mine needs something strong but not heavy: This is my favorite.
CLICK THIS: Dog Shampoo Can Be Hazardous
Dogs: Oh how I love to share products that I believe in and that work, plus we are taking on a new venture! I am learning to do some basic grooming of my dog at home!
Learn to Groom: I do not want to be a professional groomer, but I do want to know how to do basic grooming on my dog. Carol Doggett is the founder of LearntoGroom.com. After watching my dog’s breeder perform some basic grooming, the logical next step for me is learning nails, face trim, private parts, and an overall “feel good” grooming to my Cocker Spaniel.
Carol began training to be a dog groomer in 1975. Based on her vast experience and success, she, along with her husband, developed and began, 12 years ago, successful home study Career Development Package. For me, learning the basics of dog grooming means going to the best. Be sure to stay tuned for our grooming adventures with LearntoGroom.com this fall.
Groom Genie: Brushing a dog regularly stimulates the oils in the skin and at the follicle of the hair. In turn, dogs that have sensitivities and allergies benefit from regular brushing. Have you heard of fatty (often benign) tumors on the skin of dogs? Stimulating the oils in the skin is beneficial for dogs and fatty tumors don’t like that: In other words, it’s good to keep a dog’s skin healthy. Circulatory enhancing behaviors like brushing and massage are good for the dog’s overall well being, so it makes sense.
The tri-bristle pattern of the Groom Genie unravels knotted hair and does not pull it, as traditional grooming tools might. The lady who invented it, Rikki Mor, is also the inventor of the Knot Genie, which gently and painlessly removes knots from a child’s hair. Here’s my dog going into a Zen moment when he first “discovered” the Groom Genie.
Teeth Reminder: Brush your dog’s teeth, too – it’s not only easier to do than you might think, but with patience and love, your dog can learn to accept oral care.
CLICK THIS: 10 Tips for Dogs Who Hate Their Teeth Brushed
Do you have a favorite “beauty” routine with your dog? Our pal, Melissa Clinton, of Barking From the Bayou, shares her favorite beauty routines with her dogs.
CLICK THIS: Barking From the Bayou Dog Beauty Routines
Note: We were not compensated to tell you about these products; we just share what we use and might consider using for yourself and your pooch!