From the Desk of Sharda Baker
Good day and welcome everyone!
This is Sharda with another Pekingese newsletter.
Today, let’s talk about some basic Pekingese grooming tips!
Pekingese require a lot of attention to maintain their beautiful flowing coats.
Daily grooming is recommended, but grooming every other day will often work if the dog is not outside or extremely active.
The coarse outer coat and fine inner coat are shed regularly throughout the year, not just in warm weather.
Regular grooming helps to minimize the amount of hair that is shed on carpets and furniture throughout the house.
The first thing that will be obvious when you start to groom your Pekingese is how thick and dense the coat is.
It is important to make sure that you have all the tangles and knots out of all of the undercoat, or they will mat and become dense and solid patches that will require clipping to remove.
The two different types of coats will require different tools to manage the hair.
The basics needed are:
- A misting or spray bottle
- Metal comb
- Matt rake or comb
- Sharp scissors or clippers
- Thinning shears
- Slicker brush
The first step is to make sure that the Pekingese is as clean as possible. This can be accomplished by completing a full wet bath in a sink using a good quality dog shampoo.
Avoid rubbing or matting the hair, simply apply the shampoo and rinse off. A crème rinse or detangler rinse is very helpful to condition the coat and prepare for brushing.
Dry the Pekingese with soft towels, avoiding a rubbing motion again. After towel dry use a special pet hair dryer to completely dry the inner and outer coats.
Avoid using a human hair dryer, as the settings will be too hot and may cause discomfort or even damage to the skin and coat.
If you don’t want or need to complete a full bath you can sprinkle baby powder, cornstarch or a commercial dry clean powder through the Pekingese’s coat. Even if you use the dry clean method, it is important to mist the coat prior to brushing, as dry hairs will break and cause a ragged looking coat.
Mist the under coat and topcoat of the Pekingese. Place the dog on its side on a grooming table, bed or other safe surface. Push the hair backwards from the stomach up over the rib cage.
Layer by layer brush the hair back the correct way, making sure to mist before brushing. When you reach to the back of the dog, turn over and begin on the other side. The tail and head will be brushed last.
The hair on the body should be brushed slightly forward to emphasis the mane around the head. The hair on the ears and the neck should be carefully brushed to accentuate the long fringe effect.
If there is any staining of the face due to tear production, a cotton ball slightly moistened with peroxide can be gently applied, with extreme care being taken to avoid any contact with the eye.
Distilled water can be used on a cotton ball to gently wipe the eye to remove any debris from the corner.
A Pekingese will need a face wash to clean any dead skin from the wrinkle. Warm water on a cotton pad or soft cloth is all that is needed. Make sure to dry the wrinkle gently with a dry tissue or cotton ball.
TEETH AND TOENAILS
Groom right down to the paws on the legs, and remove any long hair or mats from between the toes. These mats will cause the Pekingese to limp. Overly long toenails can also cause limping. Using proper dog nail trimmers clip the claws to just before the quick, being careful not to cut to short.
Cutting into the quick will be very painful for your dog and may make them fearful of grooming in the future. If you are not sure how to do this correctly, ask a groomer or the vet to compete the procedure.
Once a week use a commercially purchased finger sleeve or doggy toothbrush and dog toothpaste to clean your Pekingese’s teeth. Do not use human toothpaste, as it is not the same formula needed for dog dental health. If you notice tarter build up a vet can remove it using a process called scaling.
STAINING AROUND THE EYES
If you notice a large amount of tear production in your Pekingese’s eyes it may be due to an irritation of the eye. Have this checked by your veterinarian, as this can be caused by an inversion of the eyelashes, a very painful and serious condition.
If your Pekingese spends time outdoors in the wind or dusty environments, or if the hair on the dogs face is falling in the eyes, matter will naturally gather at the corner.
This excessive matter will lead to tearing, and can be corrected by cleaning the eye on a regular basis with clean water, and a damp sponge or lint free cloth.
A wet area around the eye caused by excessive tearing can lead to bacterial and yeast growths. Red Yeast is a common condition that leads to a reddish-brown stain on the facial hairs and an unpleasant odour about the eyes.
A veterinarian can prescribe medications that will control and eliminate this condition. Proper hygiene is also important in stopping the reoccurrence of these bacterial and yeast conditions.
Occasionally, water with a high mineral content will cause discoloration of the hair on the dog’s face. If this is the cause of the condition, try watering the dog with bottled water and see if the staining disappears
When Pekingese pups are teething between the fifth and eight month, the incoming teeth put pressure on the jaw and skull, and this can cause tearing to occur. When the adult teeth are finally in the tearing will stop. Make sure that the area around the eyes is kept as dry as possible to avoid any bacterial infections at this time.
Genetic factors may also cause malfunctions or dysfunctions of the tear glands, leading to excessive tearing in some dogs. Dogs with short muzzles and large eyes are more prone to these conditions.
Options for addressing this condition should be discussed with your veterinarian.
The tears may stain the hair around the eyes, as they contain acidic properties. This tearing may cause a darkening of light haired dogs, and a lightening of dark haired animals. Lemon juice and water may be used, or a combination of milk of magnesia, cornstarch and peroxide can be applied to the stained area.
A simple cotton ball soaked in peroxide can be gently and carefully stroked over the stained area. Extreme care needs to be taken to avoid any possible contact with the eye itself.
There are also commercial products available at pet stores and groomers to help minimize the discoloration. Whatever product you use to correct the problem needs to be used with utmost caution to prevent any discomfort to the dog.
Never use eye drops unless under the advisement of a vet. Proper hygiene and grooming practises will help minimize the production of tears and decrease stains.
I hope that you learned a lot from today’s Pekingese newsletter.
All the best and take care