This is Sharda again for another Miniature Schnauzer Grooming Tips newsletter!
GROOMING YOUR MINIATURE SCHNAUZER
One of the most unique features of the Miniature Schnauzer is its distinctive hair in the beard, leg furnishings, and wise looking eyebrows.
These features are always accentuated on the Miniature Schnauzer, and enhance the breed’s intelligent and athletic look.
The Miniature Schnauzer is a wiry haired breed, and sheds very little, making it a good choice for anyone having allergies to dog hair.
While the shedding is minimal, there still is some hair loss, but daily grooming will virtually eliminate the problem and will keep the Miniature Schnauzer’s coat looking tip top and knot free.
Miniature Schnauzers, unlike many of the smaller breeds, are not prone to tooth and gum disease. You can help enhance this natural tendency by brushing your dog’s teeth daily.
This is a simple procedure that involves using a finger sleeve and some doggy toothpaste to gently massage the teeth and gums to remove tartar.
If you make this part of your daily grooming routine, you will save the cost of having to have the teeth descaled by a vet in the future.
Keeping your Miniature Schnauzer’s nails or claws cut is important, to prevent sore feet and damaged furniture. Using a guillotine type dog nail clipper, simply remove the very tip of the nail.
Take care not to cut the quick, or it will bleed profusely and will hurt the dog. If you are not certain where to cut to, a professional groomer or vet can complete the procedure quickly and cheaply for you.
The furnishings, or long hair on the Miniature Schnauzer’s legs, are often prone to matting. It is important to brush these daily, and to also brush through the longer hair on the belly and beard to prevent knots.
Start by pushing the hair upwards at the top of the leg and then, using a pin brush, brush it back down. This makes sure that you are not just brushing the surface of the long hair, but that you are also removing any deep mats or tangles.
Pay attention to the armpit area on the front of the belly, as this can be a sensitive spot for the dog but also a problem area for matting.
Carefully groom the beard and eyebrows using a comb. Always brush forward and away from the eyes and mouth. If you are clipping or cutting the hair on the face always clip or cut with the growth of hair, not against.
Clipping or cutting against the direction of growth can actually pull the hair or even burn the skin, and leave areas open for possible infection.
Usually the hair on the head is clipped close to the skull, and the hair on the eyebrows and ears is just shaped with scissors and left long. The beard is neither clipped nor cut, unless it becomes very long or unruly.
Many Miniature Schnauzer owners take their pet to a professional groomer two or three times a year for the clipping, and just complete the trimming and daily grooming at home.
Many owners decide to keep the whole dog trimmed very close, so they don’t have to worry about the grooming aspect. Be aware that if you choose to show your dog this would not be an option.
It is important to leave the natural oils on the Miniature Schnauzer’s coat as much as possible. They should only be bathed when necessary, and as infrequently as possible.
If you do need to bath the dog, make sure you use a dog shampoo, and avoid using human products. The pH in human shampoos can be harmful to a dogs coat and skin, and can lead to problems with scratching and possible hair loss.
EARS AND EYES
When grooming your Miniature Schnauzer, it is a simple task to just use a damp soft cloth to gently wipe the inside corner of the eye. This will remove any debris or “junk” and will stop any problems with accumulated matter in the eyes.
A vet should examine any significant tearing or staining as soon as possible.
Miniature Schnauzers often have difficulty with wax build-up in the ear, especially if their eyes are not cropped. Since the ear naturally folds, it keeps the inside of the ear warm and damp all the time – a perfect place for bacteria to grown. A simple wipe with a warm cloth can remove the accumulation and prevent problems.
If you notice a waxy discharge, there are solutions available from your vet or groomer to help remove this build-up.
If your Miniature Schnauzer has a lot of hair in the ear canal, it may need to be plucked. If you are not comfortable doing this, ask your groomer.
It is important to not use any tweezers or pointy objects in the dog’s ear canal, as it is very easy to permanently damage the dog’s ear if he or she should move suddenly.
Miniature Schnauzer’s enjoy being groomed, and many that have learned the routine happily bring their brush around to the owners to be groomed. A good quality pin brush is all that you need, but a comb is very helpful for getting through the leg furnishings and beard.
The more frequently you brush, the less likely you will have problems with knots or matting. Pet stores sell a doggy detangler that can be mixed with water and sprayed on with a misting bottle to help with any problems.
I hope you learned a lot from our Miniature Schnauzer training newsletter today.
Thanks a lot