How To Groom A Poodle
Curious about how to groom a poodle? You're in the right spot. Poodles come in all sizes, from a teacup which may weigh less than 5 lbs, all the way up to a standard poodle which may weigh in at 50 lbs. Unlike a lot of other dogs who might have a double coat made up of the top layer of guard hairs and the bottom layer called the undercoat, poodles only have a single layer coat. This means that it's not at all difficult to groom a poodle if you just have the right tools available.
To groom a poodle, you will need:
- Electric hair clippers. If you're planning on letting the poodle's hair grow, you will only need to do minimal trimming with hair clippers.
- Blunt end scissors
- Shampoo and conditioner
- A water source
- A grooming brush
- Optional items: a grooming table. If you have a white poodle, you may need to get some tear stain remover
- Every poodle about to be groomed must be clean. Put your dog in the appropriate sized container (small poodles may be bathed in a sink) and fill the tub just to your poodle's ankles with warm water. Using a cup, scoop water up and pour over your dog until he's wet. Apply shampoo, lather well and rinse. If your dog was particularly dirty, you may need to follow up with another round of shampoo. Follow with a good conditioner and rinse. Dry your dog thoroughly with the towels. If you've got a small poodle, make sure to keep him away from any draught as you bathe him.
- If you're lucky enough to have a grooming table, place your poodle on the table and secure his collar to the tether. A grooming table is a great idea for your dog's safety and your comfort (no aching back). If you don't have a grooming table. just place your dog on the floor and secure him with a leash to an immovable object.
- Brush your dog's coat thoroughly to remove any tangles. Since poodles have a single layer coat, you won't be removing much hair as shedding is low but the tangles may abound. Tease gently through the tangles. The toughest tangles may need to be cut out with the scissors.
- For a classic poodle grooming cut, using the electric trimmer, shave his legs close (with either no razor head or a #1 razor head) but leave a poof of hair on the very bottom of his each ankle. Do the same for his tail, leaving a poof at the end. For his head, shave around his muzzle and under his chin but leave the top hair untouched. Use the scissors to shape the hair on top of his head until it's rounded. Clip his body longer than his legs and even up any irregularities in the cut with the scissors.
- Remove any tear stains on his muzzle by applying an appropriate solution to a cotton ball. Let the cotton ball remain on the area for fifteen seconds and then gently stroke away the stains.
Note: If you live in a cold climate, allow your dog's coat to grow out longer as it's his only insulation against the cold. If you have a small poodle, purchase a coat for him to wear if outside for extended periods.