Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Do You Wash Your Own Dog?

As most readers know, we have four large dogs. Three of them have the double coats typical of the Northern breeds. It’s a wonderful thing…super soft and fluffy. But a pain in the rear to brush or bathe.

Ever since we got our first Husky, and our second, and our first Malamute, we’ve taken the dogs to a professional groomer. Kodiak and Quinn take awhile but Trooper wins the prize for taking the longest. I think his last grooming the lady tracked the full time she was hands on with him … six hours! From bathing, to drying, to brushing, to clipping his nails.

Look at all that fur!

It’s worth $60 to let a professional make my dogs all fluffy and clean again.

Except that we’re not sure if I’ll still have a job in another month or so. We won’t be able to afford to spend $200 plus on grooming four dogs, four or five times a year.

On the other hand, I have no desire to try to trim their nails or shave the extra fur that grows on their paws. Do your dogs have that? Northern breeds grow that fur out and it can get really long and intrusive.

The Passive Dad wrote an article about whether or not it’s worth $15 to take your dog to a self cleaning place. We have a couple in our area and they are nice. They have big tubs with hoses and even special dryers. Some of them provide shampoo even.

But is it worth $15 to groom your dog yourself?

Not for me. In our coming future, if I do lose my job, I still plan to take the dogs to the professional groomers. They won’t go as often though, maybe once or twice a year. And I may ask her to just trim their toes and brush them out instead of the full wash and dry service. When they dig in the mud and get icky we’ll hook up the special nozel with a spray that attaches to the shower.

Thankfully Malamutes and Huskies like to keep themselves clean … I love it when they groom themselves like cats. :)

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