Grooming Demystified: A Starter Guide for First-Time Pet Owners

Grooming Demystified: A Starter Guide for First-Time Pet Owners

Author/Guest Contributor: Charlotte Johnson
Image by Aleksandr Tarlõkov from Pixabay 

Grooming your dog keeps it looking good and ensures its health and comfort. As a new pet owner, you might find grooming a bit daunting. But don’t worry, it’s not as complicated as it seems.  

Below, we discuss the right way to bathe your dog and the importance of regular brushing, especially for those with longer coats. We also mention other grooming needs and when to ask for professional assistance. Read on! 


How to Tailor Grooming to the Unique Needs of Your Pet 


Grooming is one factor that should guide you when getting a pet because the process is not a one-size-fits-all routine. It varies significantly based on various factors, including the following: 


Coat Type and Care 

Learn all about different breeds because they have varying coat types, each requiring a unique approach to grooming. For example, dogs with long, thick coats, like Golden Retrievers, need regular brushing to prevent matting.  

 In contrast, short-haired breeds like Beagles, one of the best family dog breeds, may require less brushing but more frequent baths.  


Skin Sensitivity and Product Selection 

Choosing the right products ensures a comfortable grooming experience for your pet. For instance, dogs with sensitive skin may require hypoallergenic or mild shampoos to prevent irritation. 


Size and Handling 

The size of your dog influences the ease and method of grooming. Larger breeds might require more robust tools and more space for grooming, while you can manage smaller breeds with gentler tools and techniques.  


Temperament and Behavior 

Understand your pet’s behavior to plan a stress-free grooming session for you and your pet. For example, a calm and cooperative dog might enjoy grooming, while a more anxious dog may need a slower, more reassuring approach.  

 Now, let us discuss how to groom your pet. 


The Grooming Process: Tips 


Before you start, gather the right tools and supplies. These include shampoo, conditioner, brushes, combs, and nail clippers. Here are a few tips to help you groom your pet adequately. 


Brushing Techniques and Frequency 

Brushing is vital for all dogs, regardless of coat type. Use a suitable brush — slicker brushes for longer coats and bristle brushes for shorter ones. Daily brushing prevents matting for long-haired breeds, while short-haired breeds may only need weekly brushing. Always brush gently to avoid irritating the skin. 


Bathing Your Dog 

Bathing frequency depends on your dog’s activities and coat type. Typically, once a month is sufficient. Use lukewarm water and a dog-specific shampoo. Lather and rinse thoroughly to remove dirt and prevent residue buildup. Try less frequent baths with a moisturizing shampoo for dogs with dry skin. 


Nail Trimming Practices 

Long nails can affect your dog’s gait and lead to discomfort. Therefore, trim nails every 3-4 weeks and be cautious not to cut too close to the quick. You can ask a professional groomer for help. 


Ear and Eye Care 

Regular cleaning prevents infections and buildup. Use a soft, damp cloth for the eyes, wiping away any discharge. For ears, use a vet-recommended cleaner and cotton balls. Do not insert anything deep into the ear canal.  


Dental Care 

Brush your dog’s teeth several times a week using dog-specific toothpaste to prevent tartar buildup and maintain oral health. 


Final Thoughts 


Regular grooming sessions allow you to check for signs of health issues like lumps, skin problems, or parasites. On top of that, dogs often feel more comfortable and relaxed when groomed by someone they know and love. Hence, grooming is a chance to spend quality time with your dog, building trust and affection.  

 However, some breeds, like poodles or dogs with thick undercoats, have coats that require expert attention. Further, if your dog has health issues like skin conditions or is particularly anxious or uncooperative during grooming, you can ask for assistance from a professional groomer. 

Happy International Women’s Day

Happy International Women’s Day

8 Inspiring Quotes to Help You Celebrate


We celebrate International Women’s Day every year on March 8 as it commemorates women’s economic, political, and social achievements. This day also marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity. We hope that you’ll join us in celebrating all the amazing women in our lives — whether your mother, sister, friend, or mentor, these women have undoubtedly helped shape who you are today.

Below are our favorite quotations about women from some of history’s most prominent and formidable females and why their words resonate with us so much!

Read on to be inspired and encouraged by these remarkable ladies’ words — and don’t forget to tell the celebrated women in your life how important and inspiring they are to you!


#1. “A woman is like a tea bag; you never know how strong it is until it’s in hot water.” -Eleanor Roosevelt


Eleanor Roosevelt was an American politician, diplomat and activist who was the longest-serving First Lady of the United States. She was also a niece of President Theodore Roosevelt. As First Lady, she helped to define the role of modern American First Ladies. She advocated for civil rights and women’s rights, and served as a delegate to the United Nations.

What did Eleanor Roosevelt mean by this quote? She meant women are often underestimated – just like a tea bag can steep and release its flavor and strength when put in hot water, women can also do amazing things when given the opportunity. Women are powerful and resilient, and they should never be underestimated!


#2. “Women are the real architects of society.” -Margaret Fuller


Margaret Fuller was an American journalist, critic, and Women’s Rights activist. She was the first full-time female book reviewer in the United States. She wrote Women in the Nineteenth Century, which was published in 1845.

Margaret Fuller reminds us that women have always been integral to shaping society. From the very beginning, women have raised children and created homes. They have also played a significant role in politics, business, the arts, science, and other fields. Women are powerful and indispensable members of society, and we should never forget that.


#3. “There is no limit to what we, as women, can accomplish.” -Michelle Obama


Michelle Obama is an American lawyer and writer who was the First Lady of the United States from 2009 to 2017. She is married to the 44th President of the United States, Barack Obama. As First Lady, Obama served as a role model for women, and worked as an advocate for poverty awareness and food security. She also advocated for Women’s Rights issues. After leaving the White House, Obama continued to be an active voice in support of Women’s Rights.

Michele Obama’s quote reminds us that there is no limit to what women can accomplish. Women have led revolutions, founded businesses, and made incredible scientific discoveries. Women are capable of anything they set their minds to. So today, on International Women’s Day, let’s celebrate all that women have done and continue to do. Let’s remember that they are powerful and resilient, and there is nothing they can’t achieve.


#4. “You have to be brave enough to break the rules.” -Stevie Nicks


Stevie Nicks is a respected songwriter and rock musician who has achieved great success both as a solo artist and as a member of the band Fleetwood Mac. She is known for her ethereal vocal style and her poetic lyrics and has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. She has spoken out about the challenges that women face in the music industry and the importance of supporting each other. She has also said that women need to “be brave and be strong and be powerful” and that they should “celebrate their own femininity in their own way.”

We are inspired by Stevie Nicks’ quote because for centuries women have been told they can’t do things. Yet, women are just as capable as men, sometimes even more so. Today, be brave enough to break the rules and pursue your dreams. We need more women willing to take risks and challenge the status quo. So go out there and achieve incredible things!


#5. “There is no such thing as a perfect person, and there is no such thing as a perfect woman.” -Zaha Hadid


Zaha Hadid was a world-renowned architect who designed some of the most innovative and iconic buildings in the world. She was the first woman to win the prestigious Pritzker Architecture Prize, and she has left an indelible mark on the field of architecture. Her work is characterized by its bold shapes and striking use of color, and she has inspired a new generation of architects.

Despite being one of the most successful architects in the world, Zaha Hadid was not immune to discrimination. She often faced obstacles and challenges that her male colleagues did not, but she refused to be deterred. “I don’t want to be the best female architect,” she once said. “I want to be the best architect.”

Zaha Hadid’s quote is an important reminder that nobody is perfect. We all have our own unique talents and weaknesses. And that’s what makes us special. Women should embrace their imperfections and work to improve themselves every day. There is no such thing as a perfect woman, but we can all be amazing women if we try. Thank you for being you, imperfections and all!


#6. “A woman is like a bank. You can’t continue making withdrawals without making a deposit.” -Nancy Pelosi


Nancy Pelosi is an American politician who is the Minority Leader of the United States House of Representatives, serving since 2011. She is a member of the Democratic Party. She has been a long-standing advocate for women’s rights and has been pivotal in ensuring that legislation supporting women is passed. She has also been a vocal advocate for equal pay and opportunities for women in the workforce.

Nancy Pelosi’s quote suggests women are valuable and important members of society, and we should treat them as such. We need to make sure that we are giving back to women as much as we can. Women are the backbone of our communities and our economy, so it’s important that we support them in every way possible. Happy Women’s Day!


#7. “If you want something said, ask a man; if you want something done, ask a woman.” -Margaret Thatcher


Margaret Thatcher was the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1979 to 1990. She was the first woman to hold that office. She advocated for women by breaking the barriers that were in place for them and showed that women could be just as successful as men in politics and other fields.

Margaret Thatcher’s quote suggests that women are more effective at getting things done than men. Women are often more organized and efficient than men, and they are also better at multitasking. Women are capable of handling a lot of tasks at once, and they are not afraid to take on challenges. So if you want something done, ask a woman! Women are more than capable of handling anything. Happy Women’s Day!


#8. “The future is female.” -Linda Sarsour


Linda Sarsour is an American political activist and community organizer. She is the executive director of the Arab American Association of New York, and has been involved in several campaigns concerning Muslim Americans. In 2011, she was appointed deputy director of Community Affairs for the New York City Office of Mayor Michael Bloomberg. In 2017, Sarsour was a co-chair of the Women’s March on Washington. She is also a member of the Women’s March board. In February 2018, she was named one of “The Most Influential People in Brooklyn” by Brooklyn Magazine.

This quote by Linda Sarsour suggests that the future belongs to women. Women are powerful and capable, and they have a lot to offer the world. Women are the future, and we should all work to make sure that they have a voice in society. Women deserve to be heard and respected, and we need to do everything we can to promote gender equality.

Happy International Women’s Day!

Find a Groomer to Help Take Care of Those Canines!

Find a Groomer to Help Take Care of Those Canines!

March 6th is the anniversary of National Dentist Day! A day to celebrate the individuals who keep our teeth healthy and gleaming. But, let’s not forget about our four-legged pals’ teeth while we’re at it! Oral care is an integral part of overall pet health, and it should not be neglected. Pets require regular dental care to prevent gum disease, tooth decay, and other health issues. In fact, many pet experts believe that oral care is even more critical for pets than it is for humans. That’s because pets can’t brush their own teeth, so they rely on us to help keep them clean and healthy.

Pets who have regular oral care are less likely to develop dental problems, which can lead to other health issues down the road. However, doing this task by yourself can be challenging. If you have trouble with your pet’s oral care, seek a professional groomer that offers these services. A professional pet groomer can help with this task by providing regular brushing and dental cleaning services.

If you’re looking for a groomer that offers oral care services, you shouldn’t have trouble finding one in your area. Most reputable pet groomers offer these services, and many specialize in them.

  • Ask your veterinarian if they have any recommendations for good pet groomers in your area. Veterinarians are a great source of information for finding quality pet care. They should know of a few reputable places that offer dental care services for pets.
  • Ask your friends or family members if they have any recommendations. Once you have a few options, do some research on each one.
  • Visit where you can search for groomers in your area, check out online reviews and see what other pet owners have to say about the quality of their services and help you get a better idea of what to expect and whether or not they’re a good fit for your pet.
  • When you’ve narrowed the list to 1-2 groomers, make sure to visit their facility in person before making an appointment to give you a chance to meet the staff and see the facilities for yourself.

When it comes to your pet’s oral care, don’t settle for anything less than the best. When searching for a groomer, ask if they offer oral care services. If they do, you can rest assured that your pet will be in good hands. With a bit of research and some due diligence, you can find a groomer that offers quality dental care services for pets. Your furry friend will thank you!

The Importance of Pet Vaccinations

The Importance of Pet Vaccinations

Grooming is vital for your pets. It not only helps keep them clean but also ensures you are made aware of any issues vital to their wellbeing. Before taking your pets to the groomers, you need to make sure that you follow certain safety precautions. One of the most important is to ensure your pet has had its vaccinations, something required by all professional pet groomers.

Pet vaccinations are not only aimed at protecting your pets from viruses and diseases. These vaccinations prepare their immune systems to help them build resistance. Each state has a list of mandatory vaccinations for pets, but there are also some other vaccines recommended by vets. Pet vaccinations offer protection for you and your pets, but also for pet groomers and their businesses.

Diseases spread easily in areas where pets congregate. Whether you are taking your pet to the vet’s office, boarding kennels, the groomers, or the pet store for supplies, vaccines ensure that your pet is always safe.

Currently, nearly all states in the US require pet groomers to maintain proof of the rabies vaccination from the owners of the pets they groom. A copy of a medical record, veterinarian statement, or vaccination certificate must be kept by the business for up to a year. Pet grooming businesses are liable for a fine if they cannot present this proof. Most importantly, pet groomers are potentially harming their business’s reputation if they are punished for the offense. That is why they demand proof from you of your pet’s vaccinations.

Why must you vaccinate your pet?

Vaccines are not cheap, and many people prefer to administer only those required by their states. Pet owners must check with their local governments or humane society about mandatory vaccines. Your veterinarian can also tell you which other vaccines are important to ensure your pet lives a long and healthy life.

Pet groomers play an important role in educating pet owners about the required vaccines. Protected pets are not only healthier, but they also cannot spread any unwanted diseases and viruses during their visit to the grooming salon, play park etc.

One of the major reasons people avoid vaccinating their pets is the cost because pet vaccines are not free. However, pet health insurance plans can help minimize this burden.

Do vaccines hurt?

Yes, vaccines do hurt pets, just like they hurt humans. Certified pet groomers are both knowledgeable and experienced to offer advice on how to relieve any discomfort or confusion your pet may feel after its vaccination.

Pet groomers usually advise their clients not to bring their pets in for grooming immediately after pet vaccinations. The tenderness to the area of the jab can make your pet grumpy. A later appointment date, usually at least 2 days after the vaccination, allows the pets a few days to recover in the comfort of their home. This waiting period ensures your pet has no side effects and is fully protected.

Why are vaccine schedules important?

Like with humans, most pet vaccines require a repeat dosage to ensure their immune systems are maintained. These booster shots are vital, and often pet grooming clients may forget them. Pet groomers understand the importance of a healthy pet, and they are often the ones who encourage or remind their clients to keep to their pet’s vaccination schedule.

On the other hand, some vaccines are not repeated but are given on an as-needed basis.

Pet groomers are also trained to watch pets for any unusual behavior. Whenever they have any concerns, they approach their clients to make sure the pet has not had any traumatic changes or is exposed to situations affecting its health.

Can pet vaccinations have negative reactions?

All medications and vaccines present some risks. It is extremely rare, but yes, sometimes a pet may have a negative reaction to a vaccine. Pet vaccines are considered safe because they are extensively tested before they are circulated. One of the most common side effects is discomfort or swelling where the vaccination is administered.

These are some of the symptoms to look out for according to veterinarians:

  • Tiredness or weakness
  • Decrease in appetite
  • A sudden change of mood
  • Skin reaction at the injection site
  • Diarrhea, fever, or vomiting
  • Itching or swelling
  • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath

Sometimes your pet may have an allergic reaction to the vaccine. This is very rare, but you should contact your vet immediately if you notice any severe changes.

Which vaccinations should your dog have before going for grooming?

Because diseases can spread easier when your dog is out and about with you, there are four very important vaccinations they should have. American Humane warns that pet owners need to keep in mind that most vaccines need anything from a few days to a couple of weeks to become fully effective.

After each vaccination, ask your veterinarian for the record to send to your pet groomer to keep on file. Vaccinations are usually administered 2 to 4 weeks apart to ensure they are most effective.

These are the four most important vaccines:


The rabies virus is extremely dangerous to both dogs and humans. Because it is so deadly, it is required in most states. Unfortunately, there is no cure for rabies, and prevention is the only way to prevent the virus. Dogs are usually first vaccinated for rabies at about three months, and the vaccination is repeated a year later.


Parvovirus is becoming very common and is an extremely deadly virus. It typically appears with the presence of bloody diarrhea and is spread by infected feces. Sometimes, the parvovirus can kill a dog in just two days, and the virus can linger for up to two years. The vaccine is the only way to protect your dog.


Commonly known as kennel cough, Bordetella can spread rapidly, causing inflammation in the dog’s upper respiratory system. This leads to coughing and increases a dog’s chances of developing other illnesses. Kennel cough is treatable, but it’s best to have your dog vaccinated.  Your dog is given two doses in the first 16 weeks and this is followed by a booster shot every two years.

Canine influenza

Canine influenza is a dog flu that is transmitted from dog to dog when coughing, sneezing, or barking. The virus lingers for hours, making it easily transmittable in shared spaces. The symptoms include a nasty cough, fever, decreased appetite, and lethargy. These symptoms can take up to three weeks after exposure to develop.

Other precautionary vaccines

Other vaccines commonly administered include those for leptospirosis and Lyme disease. The best way to ensure your pet is covered is to discuss your pet’s lifestyle with your vet who will accurately assess its risk of exposure to infections and offer the necessary protection.

What are the essential vaccines for your cat?

Cat grooming is essential for cats because it helps prevent dangerous blockages from hairballs. Pet groomers also cut your cat’s nails and offer vital ear care. Just like with dogs, some vaccines are vital to your cat’s health. There are several vaccines for cats that are not essential but are often recommended by vets, including for chlamydia, Bordetella, and feline leukemia.

These are the two most essential vaccines:

Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus and Panleukopenia (FVRCP)

This is commonly known as the “distemper” shot. This combination vaccine protects against three diseases: feline viral rhinotracheitis, calicivirus, and panleukopenia (often called feline distemper).


Just like in dogs, the rabies virus is fatal to cats and other mammals, including humans. Rabies vaccinations are required by law for cats in most states.

What is the right age to groom a puppy for the first time?

As soon as a dog’s vaccines are up to date, it is ready to visit the pet groomers. This is usually between 12 and 16 weeks. At this stage, your dog will have had enough vaccines to fully cover it against most diseases. The earlier your puppy is exposed to other environments; the better it can acclimatize.

By 16 weeks, most dogs have had their DHPP (distemper, parvovirus, parainfluenza, and adenovirus) shot and its boosters. At this stage, they are fully protected against rabies – the most essential vaccine required by pet groomers before accepting a puppy at their salon for the first time.

Regular grooming services from this young age help to train your puppy for future grooming, and sessions are much shorter to ensure it is comfortable throughout the process. Depending on your dog’s breed, regular grooming sessions vary from monthly to three months.

Providing vaccination proof

Preventative pet care is important, and pet vaccinations are one of the most important ways to ensure healthy pets. Your favorite pet grooming salon follows the rules set out by the federal and local authorities to ensure your pet is protected from dangerous viruses and bacteria while being groomed. Therefore, they require you to provide proof of your pet’s vaccinations. This is kept on their database, making sure they have the information available for future reference.

If you want the very best for your pet, then you need look no further than Pet Groomer Finder to make an appointment with a reputable pet groomer near you. At Pet Groomer Finder you save time with features that include reviews, online schedule appointments and your pet’s appointment history. Book your pet grooming appointment today!

Introducing Cats and Dogs to Each Other

Introducing Cats and Dogs to Each Other

There is nothing wrong with mixing cats and dogs as pets, and it is always exciting to add a new animal member to the family. Unfortunately, once one type of pet has already staked a claim to your home, the introduction of another type becomes more difficult. This is especially true with  introducing cats and dogs to each other.

Often, cats and dogs take to each other immediately, but that is not always the case. Depending on their personalities, it can sometimes take up to a few months before they get used to one another. Your aim is not to make them the best of friends, but happy to ignore each other when they are in the same room.

The Dog is the One to Watch

According to Cesar Millan, it is usually the dog one needs to watch most. When a cat runs away from a dog, the dog is built to go into predator mode. However, often when they are puppies, dogs are playful, but if this playful behavior is not checked on time, it can later turn into aggressive behavior. This can result in your cat getting injured, or even killed.

Can You Match a Cat to a Dog?

  • Whether you are thinking of getting a cat in a home with a dog or a dog in a home with a cat, you must consider both animals’ personalities. Sometimes, it’s better to look for a pet that has already had exposure to the other species.
  • Look out for any signs that will indicate your dog shouldn’t be introduced to a cat. Observe if your dog attempts to aggressively chase, pick up, or pin cats. Does your dog growl, obsessively bark, or lunge at cats? If you still decide to get a cat, proceed with caution.
  • Likewise, observe your cat. If it growls, swats at, hides, or runs from dogs, you might consider that it prefers not to have a dog around.
  • A fearful and shy cat won’t be happy with a dog who loves chasing things around. Similarly, an energetic cat who runs and pounces would also drive the dog crazy. A calm, confident cat who will not run playfully or out of fear would make the best choice as a companion for a dog.
  • Some dog breeds play rougher than others, and these are best avoided if you have kittens or elderly cats. This is because these ages are more vulnerable to serious injuries. Adult cats that are playful may be more interested in playing with a dog and are also confident enough to ensure they are safe.
  •  A high-spirited or playful cat will enjoy a playful, but gentle, dog.
  • If you have an elderly, quiet or anxious pet, then a calm companion is best. Avoid riotous pets who may annoy, alarm, or bother the other one.

Introducing the Pets

Whether you already have a cat or dog, the first introduction between it and the new addition is a very important part of the process of getting them to adapt to one another. Follow these four steps to help you ensure a positive meeting:

1. Choosing the Right Location for introducing cats and dogs

Resident cat to new dog:

Introductions are best made at home when you are bringing a new dog into the family. For health and safety reasons, never take your cat to a shelter, or any other place where there are many animals, to meet a dog that you are adopting.

Resident dog to new cat:

If you are adopting a cat from a shelter, do not take your dog there because it is a highly stressful and traumatic experience for the cats. Don’t forget, if your dog goes crazy on seeing all the cats, it is not necessarily a good indicator of how he will react once you take your chosen cat home.

If adopting from a shelter, try and adopt a cat that is already dog-savvy. Perhaps the adoption counselors will allow your dog to meet your chosen cat under controlled conditions at the shelter.

Shelters usually offer advice and help you choose a confident cat or one that is used to dogs. You could also first try introducing your dog to a friend’s cat who is used to dogs. The best way to introduce your new cat to your dog is to bring it home. Here you can follow the steps required for a home introduction.

2. Separate Initially when introducing cats and dogs

Create a roster and rotate which animal is confined and which one is free to investigate the other’s scent. If necessary, confine the dog to a crate or room to ensure it cannot chase the cat if the cat darts away. This allows the cat then much-needed time to investigate the dog’s scent.

Baby gates are a wonderful way to gradually introduce dogs and cats. They act as a barrier, minimizing the danger for the cat while allowing it more freedom than a cat carrier.

If your dog obsessively digs at the separation barrier or barks at the cat for more than a day or two, you might have to accept that the interaction most probably won’t work. Your best bet is to seek proper training with the help of a professional.

When there is no one at home, always make sure one of the two pets is securely confined. This ensures no unsupervised interactions are possible.

Proceed to the next step only once the dog and cat are both calm. The dog mustn’t be obsessed with the cat, and the cat should be eating and using the litter box normally.

3. The Leashed Introduction

  • Now, you can allow both animals to be in the same room together, but you must keep the dog securely leashed.
  • Continue doing this until the dog is calm and ignoring the cat. The cat must also be calm and fearless as she goes about her normal functions (eating and using the litter box).
  • If you notice any signs of fear or aggression on the part of either animal, revert to step 2 a little longer.
  • The leashed introduction can be continued indefinitely until both pets are relaxed and happy around each other.
  • Always make sure one of the two animals is securely confined when no one is home to supervise their interactions.

4. Allowing unsupervised interactions

Only when you are positively sure the cat and dog won’t hurt each other can you consider allowing unsupervised time together. It is normal for this to take longer than a month.

Does Age Make a Difference introducing cats and dogs?

Puppies and kittens are easier to introduce to other pets, and both pets don’t need to be young animals. Puppies are less dangerous to adult cats, and kittens are generally fearless of adult dogs. All the above steps of introduction are still necessary, and it may require longer periods for them to get used to each other because kittens do tend to run and hide; while puppies love to pester cats.

Crate training makes it easier to introduce a puppy to a cat. When separating the two, make sure you place the cat in a room with its food, water, and litter box.

Some Extra Tips and Warnings for introducing cats and dogs

  • Interactions must never be forced between the two pets.
  • Distract the dog if it is staring at the cat, or the door separating them, with treats. Use the treats to help the dog look away. You can also use a gentle, happy voice or gently guide the dog away on a leash. Once he is away from the cat, offer a treat. If the dog takes the treat, continue repeating the exercise until he no longer focuses on the cat.
  • If the dog refuses to take his eyes off the cat or the door, remains overly focused on it, ignores you completely, or lunges suddenly as soon as the cat moves, consider it unsafe to leave the dog near the cat. If you have noticed your dog behaves like this with other cats, perhaps you shouldn’t get a cat.
  • It may prove difficult for you to keep the cat if your dog lunges at, growls, or shows any aggression toward it when the cat is calm.
  • If a cat attacks a calm, quiet dog, then you may also need to concede that you cannot keep both. Get professional help if you want to keep both pets.
  • Continual hissing, growling, and swatting from a cat to your dog or continued questionable behavior from your dog may mean you need to try a different cat or dog. You may need to keep just your original pet. It is unfair for either cats or dogs not to be able to tolerate each other.
  • If you notice your cat is not eating, drinking, sitting with you, or using the litter box, she is not happy. Consider finding a better dog match, or get help from a professional animal behaviorist.

When your two pets get used to each other, you will find that they will either ignore each other completely or become the greatest of friends. Whatever the case with your cat and dog, be sure that they will both require grooming from time to time. If you are looking for a well-trained pet groomer in your area, you need to look no further than:

How to Introduce Dogs To Each Other

How to Introduce Dogs To Each Other

Americans love their pets, and statistics show that at least 40% of households have more than one dog. Since most people don’t buy their pets at the same time, families getting a second dog must introduce the new addition to the rest of their dog family. Learning how to introduce dogs to each other is important in having a peaceful household.

Bringing a new dog into the existing pack does not mean chaos needs to follow. Whether human friends are moving in together with dogs, dating, or just adding another pet to the family, there are several steps to make it a smooth transition.

Introducing a new pet to your household is an exciting venture for its humans, but can be a daunting experience for the family’s existing furry friend and the newcomer. Be prepared, because presenting the two dogs often takes longer than expected. You might even need professional help. Keep reading to learn how to introduce dogs to each other.

Plan the Meeting Properly to Introduce Dogs To Each Other

Many people don’t realize that dogs cannot be introduced to each other by just placing them in the same space together in the territory of one of the dogs. It is natural for dogs to assert ownership by defending their territory. Your dog might become fearful or submissive, but then again, there could be a huge fight.

One of the first rules for introducing dogs to each other is to do it on neutral territory. You cannot do this on your own, so get somebody who knows your current dog well, to help you.

The protocol is to let the dogs meet on neutral territory first, followed by a long walk together until they get used to each other. When they come home, the humans enter first, they are followed by the dogs that live there, and last, the new dog follows.

By walking the dogs together, you are allowing them to first bond as a pack. The new dog then enters the home by following the dog currently living there. This method ensures the older dog doesn’t end up feeling as if his territory has suddenly been invaded.

What do you need to introduce dogs to each other?

Bringing dogs together will require that you follow the following rules:

  • Use a calm and happy voice.
  • Maintain control of the leash, but never hold the dog too tightly.
  • You want to encourage a positive relationship between the two dogs, so don’t punish your dog for barking at the new pack member.
  • There must be one person for each dog, and make sure the person with your older dog is familiar to him.
  • Go to a neutral area for both dogs, you don’t want any territorial behavioral flare-ups.
  • Allow plenty of distance between the dogs.
  • Bring some delicious treats for encouragement.

How to walk the dogs?

  1. The walk must always start on neutral territory where both dogs have never been before. The area must have plenty of space. This can either be a park, an open field, or a quiet street.
  2. Each dog is on a leash and held by the person responsible for it. The handlers must have a loose grip on the leashes and a calm demeanor.
  3. Starting on opposite sides of the chosen space, you both walk in the same direction. Whichever dog looks at the other one, gets a treat.
  4. Both of you keep walking until the dogs are no longer focused on each other.
  5. Repeat the same walk and reward method, but moving about 3-5 feet closer.
  6. Continue walking if the dogs are still paying more attention to you than to each other. If you notice the dogs become too focused on each other, add more distance again. The idea is to walk and give treats, and to avoid head-on meetings, but let them get used to each other.
  7. Continue decreasing the distance until both humans can walk next to each other with the dogs to the far right and left of them. The idea is to move forward without each dog obsessing over the other one. Reaching this point can take quite a few attempts.
  8. You can trade places with the other team to let the dogs sniff where the other dog walked and to investigate their potty spots.
  9. Once everyone is walking well consistently, allow the dogs to circle and sniff each other for a few seconds before leading them away. Repeat this several times.
  10. When the dogs’ bodies go still, lead them away, giving everyone a break.
  11. After several meetings where the dogs’ bodies are still and relaxed, leave the two dogs loose in a fenced area where they can move around at will.

Establishing a Hierarchy

Dogs cannot be forced into a hierarchy. Once they become a pack, you must accept that this is a natural process that they establish themselves. After a while, you may notice that the dogs may have an equal role, or one is more dominant than the other. Don’t try and force a more submissive dog into a dominant position – even if it’s your first dog and you believe this must be his position. Forcing a dog in a hierarchical position can lead to it becoming insecure and anxious.

How To Prevent a Dog Fight Turning Ugly?

If you do accidentally introduce dogs to each other too quickly, one fight may not be as disastrous as your reaction. Inevitably, even dogs that have lived together for a long time may squabble over territorial disputes, toys, etc.

Unless the dogs are fighting aggressively, there is no need to break up small fights immediately. This is because dogs use small fights, snapping, and herding to establish their hierarchy. Use your instincts when there is an aggressive fight to calmly break it up as quickly as possible. Make the dogs aware that fighting is not allowed without shouting at them, otherwise, you may increase their aggression. Remain calm and use touch or an upward pull to separate them.

Strong pack order is essential in preventing fights among your dogs. The only way to do this is to get your dogs to see you as their leader to prevent competition among them. Do this by establishing rules, boundaries, and limitations.

Dogs need to feel that they are working toward a common goal. Once they are used to each other, always walk them together, side-by-side, allowing them to understand that they are not against each other. Always watch for positive (waggy tails) or aggressive (tense posture, hard stares, and lowered tail) body language.

Never isolate dogs after a fight. Dogs naturally fight over territory, and isolation creates a further source of conflict. Socialization is the most important way to ensure well-balanced dogs.

Some useful tips for how to introduce dogs to each other

Even though the best circumstance for introductions is walking the dogs, these are not always possible. Here are some useful tips for home introductions:

  • First, do an outdoor introduction before bringing the two dogs into the house together.
  • Always leave the leashes on the dogs, allowing you better control if needed.
  • Remember to remove your resident dog’s bones, toys, and food bowls before the introduction otherwise, he will feel the need to protect these from the new dog.
  • If you need to leave home, separate the dogs while you are away. Only leave them together once they are completely comfortable with each other.
  • Always supervise their interaction when you are at home. Remember, they need breaks from each other. Crating them or walking them separately is a good way to do this.
  • If there is an altercation, separate the dogs for a few days. This gives them a break from each other and allows their stress hormones to return to normal otherwise, the fighting might get worse. After a few days, start working on creating a positive relationship again.
  • The Animal Humane Society warns that as dogs become more comfortable with each other, it is normal for some mild aggression to occur. Don’t start fretting, just separate them and start over. If you feel you aren’t winning, get some professional help.


Whatever way you choose to introduce dogs to each other is fine. Just remember that while you are gone, the chances of a dog fight are greater. Crate the dogs, or if the older dog is used to being free, you can crate the new one in an area where he cannot be taunted.

Feeding can easily become an issue with dogs. Until you recognize which one is the alpha dog, prefer feeding them separately. Once the hierarchy is established, always keep the order by feeding the alpha dog first, giving him treats first, and letting him out the door first.

Finally, don’t change the sleeping arrangements of the first dog. However, you must get both dogs used to the new sleeping arrangements. Crate the new dog in the beginning until it is housebroken.

If your older dog sleeps on the bed with you, it’s probably best to leave the arrangement as is. Don’t let the new dog on the bed from the start because it may stress your older pet.

Your hard work and patience will pay off sooner or later. The first steps to introducing dogs to each other are as essential as dog grooming is for them. Dogs are happier when they are clean and pampered. Find pet grooming services near you here: