At the end of the month, my beloved family dog Bobbie will be coming to live with us, and as a result, we’re stocking up on dog-friendly products and generally dog-proofing our lives.
As its a pretty big task, I’ll be doing this in sections.
Over the coming weeks you can expect to see:
-Food & Feeding
-Toys & Entertainment
-Sleeping & Comfort
Bobbie is a 6 year old apricot cocker spaniel (which is considered to be a “medium” dog – although he is very small) who is in pretty good health but has a pretty severe attachment complex.
I’m starting with Grooming because, in a rented accommodation especially, one of the biggest decisions surrounding getting a dog is how well you can cope with the smell, hair and potential damage.
Gross as it may be, he is going to roll in fox droppings, and throw himself into just about any stinky swamp he can get his paws on – because that’s the nature of a cocker spaniel.
As such, stench control is at the forefront of our preparations.
Cocker Spaniels are also prone to skin irritations, so sensitive products are a must.
Some of the products we’ve invested in to combat stink, shredding and scratching include:
Mucky Pup Pet Shampoo
This is a cruelty free shampoo bar with coffee beans (to minimise fox poo odors) and bergamot oil, which can act as an antiseptic, which will be great for soothing sensitive skin. Its also vegan, but I don’t think Bobbie will care much about that.
There are several brands of “pet perfume” to eliminate outdoorsy smells, too , but Bobbie absolutely hates them, so we’ll be staying clear of those.
Dog’sTrust soothing pet shampoo with Aloe extracts, Zinc PCA and Colloidal Oatmeal is designed to soothe itching, and is also something we’ll be ordering.
There is also the actual grooming which is a concern.
As a long haired dog, Bobbie needs quite a bit of grooming to avoid becoming matted, particularly around his ears.
As his ears are sensitive, I use a slicker brush. I also use it on his tail, belly and legs.
Its great for getting out the tangles, especially in winter when his fur gets grown out.
They’re pretty inexpensive, and ours is from Wigan Market, so I can’t figure out the brand.
In summer, however, we shave him pretty much bald, just leaving a coif on his head.
Summer itself poses another problem for pooches with sensitive skin – and that is sunburn.
Bobbie is a real sun seeker, and so he needs a bit of protection on his snout and his parting.
Enter Dog’s Trust snout balm – which is multi-purpose and great for use on chapped snouts, extreme weather, crusty nose and even for sun protection.
This product sells out so quickly that its actually a good idea to order a couple pots when they have it in stock. For local trips, this product is a godsend, as it can actually double as a lip balm for humans. I’ve never used it on myself, but its good to know.
So, for now, thats pretty much it for Grooming. Over the next few days we’ll be getting food & toys for him, so then I’ll be sharing some more dogproofing tips!