Miniature poodles are high-maintenance, when it comes to grooming. Because of their curly hair, they are prone to matting, which is why regular brushing and grooming are necessary. Miniature poodles also have grooming issues that need to be addressed on a regular basis, such as tear stains and hair in the ear canals. If you own a miniature poodle, you should know how to groom it.
Things You'll Need
- Slicker brush
- Tear stain remover
- Ear cleaner
- Ear powder
- Nail trimmers
- Styptic powder
- Gentle shampoo
- Hair dryer
- Dog toothbrush and toothpaste
- *A clamping instrument sold in medical supply stores
Brush your miniature poodle daily. Use a slicker brush to prevent hair tangles and mats. Start with the poodle’s head, then gently and slowly work your way down towards its bottom. Pay special attention to the poodle’s chest, stomach, leg areas and behind the ears, as they are prone to matting.
Remove any tear stains under your miniature poodle’s eyes. Tear stains are often the result of blocked tear ducts and create a dark discharge that starts at the inner corner of the dog’s eye and runs down its face. Purchase a tear stain remover from the pet store and apply it to the stain as per the bottle’s instructions.
Clean your poodle’s ears. Pour ear cleansing solution into the canal of the poodle’s ear until it fills. Use your thumb and pointer finger to massage the base of the ear canal. Insert a cotton ball into the ear canal to remove any wax or discharge. Continue this process until the cotton comes out clean. Be gentle as poodles are prone to ear infections which are painful. While ear cleaning, watch for signs of ear infection such as a "yeasty" smell, black, tarry substance on the cotton ball, bleeding, or if your dog cries out.
Grab the hair in the outer ear with your fingers or with a hemostat. Quickly pull on the hair to remove it from the ear. Do not put the hemostat too deep into your dog's ear or you risk injury. If you have difficulty grasping onto the hair, ear powder will make it easier to remove.
Cut the miniature poodles nails using clippers designed for dogs. Place the tip of the nail where the nail begins to curve inside the clipper and snap. Do not cut the dog’s nail too close to avoid bleeding. If your dog’s nails are white, you can see the quick, which is pink. Cutting the quick is painful and causes bleeding. If the nails are dark and you are unable to see the quick, look at the part of the nail you just cut. If you see a black dot, you are near the quick and should stop. Apply styptic powder or corn starch to the nail if it bleeds.
Place your miniature poodle into the tub. Wet the hair with warm water and use a gentle shampoo to wash the fur. Rinse the soap out of the hair thoroughly or the skin will be dry, causing itching. Use a towel to remove most of the moisture from the dog’s hair. Use a hair dryer to completely dry the hair. Be sure to brush the hair at the same time to prevent any knots.
Brush and inspect your miniature poodle's teeth each time you groom. Miniature poodles have small teeth where plaque and tartar quickly builds. This can be prevented by daily tooth brushings. Place dog toothpaste on a soft toothbrush and brush your dog's teeth by moving the toothbrush back and forth. If your mini poodle objects to this, use a fingerbrush or your finger to brush the teeth to get your dog comfortable with the process. Tartar and plaque can cause a variety of issues if left on the teeth, including abscesses, periodontal disease and even heart problems, as the bacteria can go under the gum line and enter the blood stream.
Tips & Warnings
- Besides brushing, most miniature poodle grooming is performed once a month, or as needed.
- Shaving and scissoring is best left to a professional groomer. Miniature poodles on average visit a groomer every six weeks.
- Photo Credit poodle image by palms from Fotolia.com