Grooming your dog yourself needs to be a process that is as safe and painless as possible for both you and your dog. Let’s be real; many, many dogs do not enjoy the bath, the nail clip, or even the brush. And we don’t like getting wet from shaking dogs, hair sticking to our clothes or up our noses.
Taking your time and ensuring that you are properly using the right tools is important, but wearing the right things is essential to make your bath and groom much more enjoyable for both parties.
Here are my recommendations of what to wear to help you achieve the safest groom you can with your pet.
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Make sure all your clothes are comfortable, breathable, resist water, and dry quickly
Dogs love to stick their heads over the side of the tub and shake all over you while getting their baths, it must be amusing for them! What is not amusing for you though is being stuck in heavy, stiff, soaked clothing for the rest of the groom.
Tops and Pants
The best type of clothing to wear is any nylon-type fabric because it will resist water and dog hair. Clothes with this fabric are also easy to move in, which is something you do a lot of while grooming. Scrubs are also an option because they are cheap, readily available, allow flexibility, and dry quickly.
Buy this cute, waterproof top on Amazon
If you are looking for grooming clothes but want a choice in color and style, Jodi Murphy Grooming Apparel carries various sleek yet classy tops and pants (including low-rise capris) which offer a unique look without giving up any of the function.
A groomer’s most important job is making sure your pet stays healthy, but it can be difficult without the proper attire. Grooming clothes that are lightweight and water resistant are an essential piece of equipment for dog grooming because they increase the comfort and safety of you, and ultimately, your pet.
An apron over clothes, while you are bathing, ensures that much less soap and water gets onto your clothes in the first place.
Aprons also protect the wear and tear on your tops. Paw Brothers makes a wonderful waterproof apron that works well and has cute colors to choose from.
I always wear rubber gloves when grooming for several reasons. First of all, wearing gloves saves you time in the long run because it helps spread shampoo over the coat quicker. Wearing gloves also saves your hands and feels like a nice little massage for your pet.
I love Ansell chemical rubber gloves because they protect you up to the elbows and mine have lasted for years!
Wear closed toe shoes – not flip flops
Proper shoewear is a MUST for keeping you safe while grooming. The last thing you want is to have a dog knock a pair of scissors off a grooming table and have them puncture your foot, which is unsafe and could lead to an infection.
Not only do you want to focus on finding closed toe shoes, but you also want to be sure they are both waterproof and comfortable. Grooming involves a fair amount of standing and moving around as well as giving a lot of baths to dogs. You need a shoe that can support you and keep your feet dry.
Personally, I love to wear Merrell’s hiking boots for grooming in the winter because hiking boots are made for working feet and to do exactly what you need around water. In the summer, I try to stick with shoes that are more plastic and have a water resistant build, like Sloggers or Crocs, which can both be found on Amazon.
Wearing closed-toe shoes not only helps with safety when dealing with pets and their grooming, but it can also be used to avoid injuries to toes and feet related to running around a lot during work. So whatever you choose, keep them waterproof/resistant and close-toed are the perfect choice to wear for safe grooming.
Avoid wearing any jewelry or accessories to minimize the risk of injuring yourself or the dog
It is crucial you avoid wearing anything that could become a hazard to you or the pet you are grooming. Unfortunately, jewelry and accessories have the potential not only to become hazards, but they also stand the chance of being ruined beyond repair.
Leave jewelry for special occasions when you aren’t working to keep you, the pets you’re grooming, and your jewelry safe!
It’s also important to have your hair pulled back so you don’t get it tangled in the dog’s fur or any of the grooming tools while you are working on the dog. That would likely be traumatic for everyone involved.
Invest in earplugs or earmuffs
Between barking, dryers, and clippers, grooming is a loud process that can do a lot of damage to your ears in a short amount of time. Be sure to protect them, too!
The type of ear plugs you get depends on your preference, but I would encourage you to do your research and make sure you are getting something thick enough to truly block out sound. Grooming is so loud it can still get through thin or cheap earplugs and cause damage, so spend a little bit extra to get something substantial.
Your ears will thank you!
Always wear safety glasses & a face mask
Someday, we won’t be required to wear face masks like we have been during this pandemic. However, I will still be wearing a face mask during grooming. Not only does it keep my face protected, but it also keeps dog hairs from invading my nose, mouth and lungs all day long.
I also always wear and recommend wearing safety glasses to keep your eyes safe and from getting dog hair in them. Have you ever had to stop what you are doing to dig around your eye and fish out a long dog hair? Trust me, it’s not fun!
Accidents happen and while there is no way to make a groom 100% risk free, following these tips will greatly decrease chances of risky situations from occurring. That way, everyone is being safe and having fun!
Want more of my tips and recommendations? Check out my ebook, 32+ Grooming Hacks. Just $9 to learn even more!