There is nothing more beautiful than a well groomed Cocker Spaniel. These lovely dogs boast magnificent coats, but they do need looking after which means setting up a grooming routine that you and your dog can really benefit from and enjoy. You might well opt to take your pet to a grooming parlour for them to be professionally hand stripped and lightly trimmed, which is a great idea especially in preparation for the hotter summer months, or you might like to learn how to do this yourself.
Grooming, clipping and tripping your pet yourself will save you a heap of money, but you would need to invest in some good quality tools and ones which stand the tests of time because they will be used regularly which ideally should be on a daily basis.
There will be times when you would need to get your dog professionally groomed and it's really important that you choose a reputable and well trained person to do this for you, whether they have their own parlour or not. You'll find that many dog groomers prefer to work on dogs in people's own homes and they are very skilled at what they do. However, you still need to be absolutely sure they have been trained and have the necessary experience and knowledge of how to groom and hand strip a Cocker Spaniel.
Brushing and grooming your dog yourself is easy enough, but when it comes to clipping, cutting and trimming your pet's coat, it's a whole different ball game. One of the best things to do is invest in a video which you can watch in order to learn all the basics before you start on your pooch.
Alternatively, you could take your Cocker along to a grooming parlour and ask to watch as your dog is being groomed. This is a great way of learning the basics because you get to ask questions and make lots of notes. With this said, practice makes perfect, so when you first start out grooming your dog, you should only attempt the basics and nothing too difficult to start off with.
If you have just got a young Cocker puppy, it's best just to give them a slight going over on a daily basis which is more to get them used to be brushed and handled than anything else. It's the perfect opportunity to introduce your pup to all the tools needed to groom them. It's only later when they start to develop their feathers that you can start brushing and grooming them in earnest.
This type of brush has either closely or widely spaced bristle sand are ideal when you need to give your Cocker a quick brush up. With this said, they are not robust enough to really get down deep into the coat, but they are the perfect tool to use on puppies especially the ones with soft bristles.
A metal pin brush is the ideal tool to use when you need to brush down deeper into your dog's long coat and it's extremely effective at removing all dead hair whilst at the same time brushing out the undercoat. The best design has rubber tips on it which ensures you don't accidentally scratch your dog's skin if you get a little too enthusiastic.
These have to be one of the best tools to have in a dog grooming kit. The brush boasts a very useful design with the tines being just ever so slightly hooked at the tips and set on a base that gives just enough to reduce the amount of pressure being applied when you brush your dog. However, when brushing a Cocker Spaniel's coat, it's really important to do so gently without applying too much pressure even when using a slicker brush.
The design is perfect for untangling knots and any matted fur while at the same time removing any dead hair found in the coat. It's also the perfect tool to finish off a coat because it smooths hair off very nicely.
Steel combs are also invaluable tools to have in a grooming kit. They have well placed teeth but the design incorporates shorter ones in between the main teeth. The wider toothed design is perfect when combing out a Cocker's undercoat. It's best to use a wide-toothed comb to begin with and then a close-toothed one afterwards.
Cocker Spaniels are notorious for getting nice and wet which means muddy during the colder months. Where there's mud, there's usually a few tangles and the best tool to get rid of these is a de-matting comb. They are also very effective at thinning out a Cocker's undercoat. Using a de-matting comb to break up a thicker tangle makes the task that much easier and reduces the chances of tugging or pulling on the hair which could hurt your Cocker.
Other tools which you might need to invest in as you get more confident about brushing and grooming your Cocker include the following:
Learning how to groom your Cocker Spaniel yourself is not only a great way to bond with your dog, but it will save you a heap of money too. From time to time you can still take them to be expertly hand stripped at a grooming parlour which is especially good during the hotter summer months because it will help your pooch stay cooler. Buying a video on how to groom a Cocker Spaniel is also a great idea because it allows you watch how a professional dog groomer goes about it which can be invaluable.