How To Groom a Puppy (101 Guide for Beginning Dog Parents)

Categorized as Grooming
grooming a puppy

Puppies are adorable but keeping them that way is not an easy task. One of the most important things to keep in mind is that it is the owner’s responsibility to ensure that the pet is clean and well-groomed. Regular grooming will help you catch issues with your dog’s health, like fleas and ticks early on. It will also keep the dog looking his best.   

As soon as your puppy is born, you need to begin with bathing, brushing,  ear cleaning, and trimming its coat and nails. It will get them used to the idea of grooming and will reduce their anxiety level when they are older. This article will highlight some of the ways to groom your puppies.

When to Start 

Dogs grow rapidly during the earliest 6 months of their life. It is recommended to start grooming when they are 10 to 12 weeks old. Puppies that are groomed during this time are less likely to suffer from skin and coat problems.

Once your pet is ready for first grooming, it’s vital to get him used to it. As they have very sensitive skin, make sure not to use a harsh brush or comb and begin by gently massaging his paws and toes. 

For instance, you can play games with them and reward them with treats ( like Stella & Chewy’s Beef Heart or Redbarn Naturals Protein Puffs) when they come to you. If you do this, he’ll likely become accustomed to the procedure and enjoy it more when it’s time for the real grooming.

How to Prepare a Puppy For Grooming

Regular grooming will show your dog that you care for him. Before you start doing it, it’s recommended to wash them with hypoallergenic shampoo. Here are some tips on how to prepare a puppy for grooming:

1. Start With Playtime

Playtime is a great way to tire him/her out and start grooming. This is a good method to bond with your pet. So, you can start grooming gently and not cause any discomfort. When they are tired, they will be less likely to get stressed. Choose a game in which they burn more energy so they are less likely to hesitate. Before you begin, make sure that they play for 10 to 15 minutes, and also do not get the grooming supplies out until they finish playing.

2. Take Your Time

It is also important to take your time when grooming them. You will need to be patient and firm during the dog spa session. If you rush, you may accidentally cause damage to their skin. Because there are some dogs (such as Afghan Hound, American Pitbull and Bulldog ) that are very sensitive and can’t tolerate any pressure. 

They may even be a little aggressive at first but that is normal. So, it’s best to start with a light touch and a short session of 10 minutes or less and gradually increase the time as you become more experienced.

3. Set up the Grooming Area

You will need to set up a grooming area in your home where your puppy can be left while you complete the session. If you are planning to groom them indoors, a small room, preferably with a clean floor, is perfect. In the case of outdoors grooming, make sure you have a secure place to keep them and a well-lit area where you can work.

4. Find the Right Grooming Equipment

To make pet grooming a good experience for you, it’s essential to find the right equipment. If you’re using a wire brush, then use a brush with soft bristles. The bristles should be made of rubber, and they should be short and rounded. If you’re using a comb, then make sure it has soft teeth.

Remember that grooming a puppy is not the same as an adult dog. Because the fur will not be as thick as the coat on an adult dog. This means that the grooming tools that you use on an adult canine will not be suitable on a puppy.

Grooming Your Puppy

Grooming your puppy at home is one of the best ways to show him affection. Here are the different stages of puppy grooming and what to concentrate on in each stage.


Puppies should be bathed every week or twice a month regularly to help keep them clean and free of bacteria. There are many different ways to do that, but most are very similar. You will need to soak him/her in a tub or sink with warm water and shampoo.

Make sure the fur friend is comfortable in the tub so you can reach all of its body parts. Give them a massage from top to bottom and protect their eyes, nose, and mouth from shampoo.

You can also use a bath brush to help remove dirt from your puppy’s coat. Some pups are more comfortable with having their ears cleaned. You can use a cotton ball or cotton swab to gently clean their ears.


This helps to remove dead hair, dirt, and parasites, and keep their coat shiny. Start by gently rubbing the fur in the direction of growth, then go back over it with a soft brush to remove loose hair.

You can use a brush with a tufted end, which will help you brush in the direction of fur growth and help you reach the fur in hard-to-reach places. Be sure to brush their tail, as this is a major part of her coat.

Nail Trimming

Puppies are very active and their nails can get long and sharp, which can hurt them if they get caught on things. Nail trims are a great way to keep a dog’s nails short and smooth.

Make sure to trim only a few of their nails at a time because you don’t want to cut into the quick (inner blood vessel). If you accidentally hit the quick and the nail starts bleeding then stay calm and use styptic powder or cornstarch to stop the blood.

You can use a nail clipper to cut the nails but it’s best to use the grinder to grind them down. A dog nail grinder is a handheld tool that uses a grinding wheel to cut the nails. It’s safe to use on puppies as long as you’re careful not to let them chew on it.

Trimming the Coat

Cutting your puppy’s coat is another way to keep it looking clean and shiny. The best way to do this is to trim your puppy’s coat when it’s wet. This will help prevent the coat from getting tangled up. Trim their coat at least once a month but make sure to wait until they are about six months old.

You can use a pair of scissors or a pair of clippers. If you’re using clippers, start from the top of the back and move down towards their rear leg. In the case of scissors, you’ll want to cut a few inches off the end of the coat, then cut along the hairline. Be careful not to cut too close to the skin, as you don’t want to leave a scar.

Dental Care

Dogs that have their teeth brushed every day are less likely to have tartar buildup and gum disease. This will remove plaque and food particles that can cause bad breath and gum disease.

This is because the toothbrush gets into all the nooks and crannies of the teeth, where tartar is more likely to form. Puppies have tiny teeth, so you’ll need to use a small toothbrush to gently clean their teeth.

It’s best to start brushing them around three weeks of age. You can also use toothpaste (Kissable All-Natural or Petsmile Professional Dog Toothpaste) made for puppies. Brushing your puppy’s teeth regularly will help keep their mouth healthy and prevent tooth decay.


As a dog owner, you are probably well aware of how much work it requires to care for a pet. The dog grooming process can be a lot of fun for both you and your pet. It is also a great way to maintain the health of your pet’s coat and skin.

But if you don’t have the right tools for the job, it can be a real pain. Luckily, there are some simple steps and tips that you can take to help you prepare your dog for grooming and make the whole process much easier.