Grooming a Golden Retriever

Your Golden Retriever’s beautiful coat needs to be kept clean and tidy, so it’s a good idea to carry out regular grooming sessions. Here are some tips on making sure grooming goes smoothly.

Why is grooming so important?

Grooming isn’t just motivated by vanity on the part of dog owners. The wavy fur of the Golden Retriever helps to regulate his body temperature and in order to do this properly, it needs to be kept free of matts which can build up in the coat if it isn’t brushed regularly. The fur also needs to have air circulating throughout it, so that the skin underneath is kept healthy and dry. A neglected Golden Retriever coat can have matted fur and underneath these matts, the air will become moist and warm – the ideal breeding ground for parasites, yeast and bacteria. In these cases the skin can become itchy, sore and infected as well as being bitten by fleas and larvae. If that isn’t enough to motivate you to groom your dog, we don’t know what is!

Apart from all this, grooming also stimulates the production of natural oils in the coat and spreads them throughout the fur, keeping it healthy, strong and glossy. It’s also the perfect opportunity for Retriever owners to give their dog’s bodies a quick check-up and look for any signs of illness, such as unusual lumps in the skin, evidence of allergies or minor cuts and scrapes.

Groom your Golden Retriever from puppyhood

Even if your Retriever doesn’t seem to need it, you will still need to start grooming him when he’s a puppy, so that he grows used to the experience. That way, when he grows into a large adult with a long coat, you’ll find it much easier to manage longer grooming sessions.

What you’ll need

When your Retriever is just a pup, you’ll need a normal slicker brush with steel pins. However, once the adult coat arrives, you’re going to need a few more items in your toolkit including:

  • A fine toothed comb and a wide toothed comb
  • A flea comb
  • A matt rake for removing matts

For more extensive grooming and bathing, you’ll also need:

  • Doggy shampoo
  • Detangling mist for dog coats
  • Cotton wool for cleaning ears
  • Clippers for trimming toe nails

How to brush your Retriever

When it comes to brushing, you should always brush in the direction that the fur grows. Use your fingers to take the fur in small sections and brush outwards from the root. If you encounter any matts though, be sure to tackle them from the very outer edges and work your way inwards towards the skin. You can hold the fur close to the skin to prevent it from hurting your dog as you comb. Brush your Golden Retriever as often as it takes to keep the fur in good condition, ideally several times a week if not daily.

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