Just like barbershops and salons, many dog groomers are shuttered until further notice (except for select groomers in animal megastores, like Petco and PetSmart, which should be avoided during a deadly pandemic, anyway). But unlike us, our dogs are virtually powerless to stop the dirtying of their incessantly burgeoning coats, leaving many pup owners utterly astounded by how quickly their pristine snowballs have become swampy tumbleweeds over the course of quarantine.
One area of particular bogginess among these suddenly ungroomed dogs is *sigh* the asshole, which, now overrun by a tangled mess of fur, is especially prone to doggie dingleberries and excessive matting. Fortunately (or unfortunately, depending on your attitude), you can take matters into your own hands until groomers are able to safely reopen, washing and shearing back there yourself. If you have any hesitations about doing so, just follow this advice on how to groom your dog at home from Chris at Avenue of the Paws mobile dog grooming.
Your dog — and their ass — will be better for it.
Tie ‘Em Down
When you come for dat ass, your dog is probably going to be reluctant about the whole situation, despite it being for their own good (which is understandable). They may squirm about or simply try to sit down, which not only makes your job a hole — ahem, whole — lot harder, but could also result in them injuring themselves. So, for safe and easy grooming, Chris suggests using some sort of leash to secure your dog in place, either in the bathtub, or if you have a really smol boi, in the sink. “I’d also definitely use a bath mat to keep them from slipping,” he adds.
Distract Them With Treats
Hey, if someone was coming to shave your ass, you might want some treats, too. “The key thing about dog grooming is trying to keep them calm and safe,” Chris says, adding that one of the simplest ways to do so is by sticking peanut butter to the wall of the tub (for easier cleanup, you could try this treat dispenser that suctions to the wall). You may be surprised at how willing your dog is to let you poke around back there for a decent glob of peanut butter.
Bring Out the Clippers
Above all else, Chris emphasizes, “Never use scissors.” Even secured, your dog may be inclined to jump about, in which case, using scissors is a recipe for disaster. Instead, he says the infrequent home groomer can easily get away with using cheap clippers equipped with a #10 blade, which leaves approximately two millimeters of coat and is a relatively safe blade for shaving especially sensitive areas.
At this point, you simply need to take a deep breath, lift that tail, then gently and slowly trim from side to side, attempting to piece off any straggling clumps of hair without actually touching the blade to the skin (or the asshole). Check out the video below — which, warning, is basically just one long closeup of a poop-y doggy ass — to see how the professionals get it done.
Stop Trimming There
If you succeed with the ass grooming, you might be proud and perhaps even inclined to give your dog a full-on buzz cut, but Chris warns against doing so, explaining that dogs need their fur for insulation — even especially furry dogs that live in warmer climates rely on their coats for protection from the heat and the sun. “The only way I’d ever shave a dog is if I absolutely had to,” he says. Their ass is trimmed now, so just be happy with that until groomers open back up and are able to take care of any other clipping needs appropriately.
Finally, Give Them a Good Washing
While you should put the clippers away after you deal with any excess ass hair, you might as well give your dog a good wash to ensure complete cleanliness. A good rule of thumb is washing them once a month — more or less, depending on how active (and messy) they are.
Chris suggests starting with warm water, which is more comfortable for the dog, just like it is for us. Then, he recommends scrubbing them with a hypo-allergenic shampoo and a conditioner with aloe vera, both of which should be scentless to avoid any unpleasant allergic reactions. From there, he suggests rinsing the dog off with cooler water, which will help close up their pores and prevent the skin from drying out.
Ideally, you should towel dry your dog, then gently blow dry them while brushing with a metal slicker brush to prevent knots and matting (which is exactly what landed you here in the first place). If your dog loathes the blow dryer, Chris says you can let them naturally dry, but you have to keep on brushing them until that happens, which “might be a bit of a process.” Another good practice is using a drying ear cleaner after each bath, which will help prevent any excess moisture from turning into an ear infection.
Last of all, quit worrying about what your dog thinks of its owner after having its ass trimmed. In a matter of moments, it will all be forgotten… until next time.