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I used to brush him every day and also sratch everywhere, touched his paws and pads underneath since we got him, at eight weeks. But all of a sudden he has decided he doesn't like it and starts mouthing. It does get bitey when I persist. So I am not sure how to get him used to grooming.

Also, I don't know how exactly to trim his nails, or clean his ears. The clippers I got for him at the pet store are hard to use and he wont let me touch his nails anyway. He has some sticky dirt gathering in his ears, it wont come off if I wipe with a tissue. Is there a solution I can use or just a damp tissue??

Links to any good videos that teach how to groom as well as how to train him to sit still while I do it will be greatly appreciated.
 

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I don't think there is just one right approach, as every dog is different. My Maltese comes running as soon as she hears me taking out the grooming kit. She would sit still for me for as long as it takes, lets me do anything I want and she really seems to enjoy grooming and bathing.

My Lab loved grooming and hated bathing. Dexter loves grooming and despises bathing. I used the same method on all of my dogs, but they just don't like the same things. :eek:

As for the grooming part, one thing I do with all of my dogs is a lot of paw and ear touching and massaging when petting them. They all associate being touched with a good thing, so when I bring out the nail file or clipper, I give them a little paw or ear massage before, during and after grooming. They don't seem to mind at all.

I also teach them the command "side" first, they lay down on their side, and get a massage. Once they know "side", it's much easier to start the actual grooming process, since they're positioned and calm. I introduce the grooming tools with treats, before I use them on my dogs. When it comes to clipping or filing nails, I always do one nail at a time in the beginning. Lots of cuddles and treats mixed in. Then I work my way up to clipping 2 or more nails until I can clip all of them in one sitting.

As for ear cleaning, I started using Zymox Otic for all of my dogs. I find that it helps prevent and clear up ear infections, depending on which kind of Zymox I use. I start by cleaning the outer ears for a few days, and once they're comfortable, I squirt some of the solution inside their ear canal and massage it in, before wiping out the ear. I promise I'm not their sales rep, but it helped clear up a yearlong chronic ear infection in my Lab. Thus the stuff is my holy grail. :p

So, basically, it is all about a slow and patient approach for me. I hope this helps a little.
 

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I use 1 part white vinegar, 3 parts water as an ear cleaning solution suggested by my vet. I just get a little cotton damp and rub the insides with it and have had good success with this
 

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I don't think there is just one right approach, as every dog is different. My Maltese comes running as soon as she hears me taking out the grooming kit. She would sit still for me for as long as it takes, lets me do anything I want and she really seems to enjoy grooming and bathing.

My Lab loved grooming and hated bathing. Dexter loves grooming and despises bathing. I used the same method on all of my dogs, but they just don't like the same things. :eek:

As for the grooming part, one thing I do with all of my dogs is a lot of paw and ear touching and massaging when petting them. They all associate being touched with a good thing, so when I bring out the nail file or clipper, I give them a little paw or ear massage before, during and after grooming. They don't seem to mind at all.

I also teach them the command "side" first, they lay down on their side, and get a massage. Once they know "side", it's much easier to start the actual grooming process, since they're positioned and calm. I introduce the grooming tools with treats, before I use them on my dogs. When it comes to clipping or filing nails, I always do one nail at a time in the beginning. Lots of cuddles and treats mixed in. Then I work my way up to clipping 2 or more nails until I can clip all of them in one sitting.

As for ear cleaning, I started using Zymox Otic for all of my dogs. I find that it helps prevent and clear up ear infections, depending on which kind of Zymox I use. I start by cleaning the outer ears for a few days, and once they're comfortable, I squirt some of the solution inside their ear canal and massage it in, before wiping out the ear. I promise I'm not their sales rep, but it helped clear up a yearlong chronic ear infection in my Lab. Thus the stuff is my holy grail. :p

So, basically, it is all about a slow and patient approach for me. I hope this helps a little.
Thank you, this helps :).
 

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Great videos, thanks! :). No I did not start clicker training. My marker word is 'good boy'. I want to use the clicker, but I have been inconsistent with it, since he already knows his commands and I have trouble clicking and rewarding with the treat, and holding the leash. :/
 

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He's going through a "bratty" phase. So even though you've played with his feet and ears since he was tiny, he's suddenly objecting now, because he thinks he's got better things to do and he can't be bothered to stand still. Keep at it. Exercise him first, then play with his feet when he's nice and tired. If he tries to mouth you, discourage it by stuffing a toy into his mouth or simply by "blocking" his bites. Don't make it into an adversarial ordeal for either of you, though. The mouthing phase will pass and he should remember having his paws handled as a good thing.

For his ears, a mixture of rubbing alcohol and white vinegar should do the trick. Place a few drops in the ear, then wipe up the excess with a cotton ball or soft cloth.

What kind of toenail clippers did you get? I don't like the Resco silver "guillotine" type clippers, I like the pliers type with the orange handles. Much easier to get around the nail and see what you're doing. Clip off a tiny bit of nail at a time, and as I said, don't make it a fight. What you're doing right now is imprinting grooming as a GOOD thing.

I'm a professional groomer, and what I like to do with young pups is encourage their owners to bring them early and often. Sometimes, the pup will simply come into my salon, get up on the table, get treats and pets, and get accustomed to sights, sounds, and scents of the groomer's salon. He'll stay for just 5-10 minutes to get a pleasant imprint, then go happily on his way. I don't charge for this. The next time I'll do the same, but perhaps work in a toenail trim and a little bit of brushing. I'll charge about $12 for that. By the time puppy comes in for his first full grooming, he's got the idea that grooming time is a pleasant experience.
 

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My rule, is your trimmers need to be sharp enough and to keep them trimmed without hitting close to the quick. I've groomed for about 10 years and we stress to owners with shy dogs like this they need to practice daily. Play with their feet more, reward them. bring out the trimmers, let your dog see them, and after you've established a routine, slowly touch the trimmers to each toe as if you're clipping them. When you go get your pups nails again, stay there and watch. Is it possible your dog had a negative experience? I've worked at a few shops and you'd be surprised at some groomers/bathers change from being nice and friendly in front of customers then rough and mean to just get done fast.

I've worked at high end shops and hole in the wall places, and in fact, it was a hole in the wall in San Jose CA, family owned (I was the only female and non family employee,) who truly cared about being gentle with each and every dog. They were also very clear it was quality not quantity that mattered. I've also worked at one's were I was told I was taking too long and doing too good of a job (I'm not a slow groomer, but quality conscious which I feel if you pay for a certain serves you should get it,) where they'll expect that same quality again next time. Sorry, not trying to change the thread, but if you use a groom shop, I'd stick around during trims. Also never hesitate to ask them to show you how.

If you're unsure, start slowly, especially on dark nailed dogs. As you trim layers off, focus on the center of the nail. Once you see a dot, usually a needle speck of soft tissue, don't go farther. If you need to move the quick back or want a cleaner clip, tip the front of the nail. I'd stay away from those grinders, too easy to do real damage to pups and are known for causing foot shyness.
 
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