Frankie is baaaad to the bone

Admit it. The word “grooming” sounds kind of frou frou, something that only poodles* and little fussy dogs get subjected to.

And it’s true, grooming does refer to parts of the dog’s body, including hair, nails, and eyes, that are often dealt with in human beauty salons.

But a recent post on, called Winter Care for Your Dog’s Skin, Coat and Paws, brought to mind just how important grooming is to the health of your dog.  And DoggyBytes is hardly a wussy site, what with owner Jim McBean feeding his dogs — one of them a pit bull, yet! — raw meat and all. (True, this was a guest post, written by a girl, Susanne Postill, whose blog Eco-Pup even shows small dogs in cute clothing. As does this blog, you may have noticed. And, when it comes to his dogs, Jim is a real softie.)

But I digress. The point is, we’re talking about essential procedures, not cosmetics. So in order to clear up any misconceptions about grooming, which does sound rather metrosexual, I suggest you think in automotive terms: body work (maintenance of the overall exterior, or coat) and detailing (focusing on the smaller but essential parts like feet, ears, eyes, and teeth).

There are even macho-sounding tools, like the FURminator, that you may need to do the job.

With that in mind, stay tuned — as in tune up — for my  series of posts about this important aspect of canine health care.

*Poodles have gotten a bad rap, as I mentioned early on in this blog: See Of Poodles and Portuguese Water Dogs.

19 thoughts on “Dog Grooming and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance”

  1. Ty and Buster hate grooming. HATE it. Don’t even like the sleep junk being wiped from their eyes. But if we called it body work and detailing … hmm. Wait till I tell Amy@GoPetFriendly that we gotta get a motorcycle! Thanks Edie! And looking forward to the tune up tips you’ll be writing about.

  2. After you mentioned a correlation between arthritis and long toenails (turned out not to be a causation) I took Archie to the vet for toenail inspection. Indeed, a couple of his were too long and the vet explained that this can create problems for the arthritic pup by causing his gait to change to accommodate the long nails. Thanks!

  3. Frankie looks *awesome* dressed up as a biker puppy! I use the furminator when Jersey sheds and it kicks butt!! I know that the cost is a little offputting, but it really does the job!

    1. Frankie thanks you! That’s one of my favorite pics, taken from one of the book trailers for Am I Boring My Dog. This was a perfect excuse to sneak it in.

      Luckily, Frankie isn’t very-thick coated and doesn’t need the FURminator, but many swear by it!

  4. The FURminator is great! We have a funny photo of Buster sitting next to a pile of fur after a furminating session. I know they don’t work for all fur types, but for Buster and Ty, it’s wonderful! It really cuts down how much time we need to spend brushing them.

  5. I really like the boots idea in the blog on Winter Care for Your Dog’s Skin, Coat and Paws. My two dogs Sadie and Rusty do not mind wearing Pawz, and it keeps their feet nice and safe.

    I agree that is an adorable picture of Frankie by the way.

    1. Not having snow here in Tucson, we don’t have much of an excuse to wear boots, but shades… fuggedaboudit! And, yes, Frankie is a perfect model for Doggles and biker duds.

  6. That Frankie is just a star! Grooming is an important topic. With daily brushing, you have ample opportunity to see any changes in your dog’s skin condition, color, and any growths that may need medical intervention. I look forward to your tune-up series!

    1. Frankie thanks you for the praise, which he revels in. I don’t tell him everything of course. He’d be impossible to live with.

      But uh, oh, you’ve now covered everything I was going to say in my next post – I’d better come up with something new (or at least some good elaborations on the points you made)!

  7. Funny you should mention the Furminator today. I work a couple days a week at a pet store and today a police officer came into the store with a broken Furminator – he handle snapped in two. I also noticed that the teeth on the brush were pretty beaten. Turns out he was on the K9 unit and they have to comb their dogs every day. We did an exchange up to a higher priced model for him, but I told him that these things aren’t really designed for commercial use, or as much combing as he was using it for. So, the Furminator seems to work pretty well for domestic use, but probably not going to hold up to daily combings.

    Whew, am I ever glad my blog passed the “wussie test” LOL. I guess the combination of my dogs, my blog and I can appear pretty controversial, but you are right, I am a big softie, especially when it comes to my dogs. Oh, by the way, even though Zeus was a stray, the information I’ve gathered and talking to other pittie owners, I think Zeus is a purebred American Pit Bull Terrier. At the moment, he’s got his head on my left leg and I’ve got my laptop precariously perched on my right, as is the norm most nights.

    And THANK YOU for mentioning my blog and Su’s guest post, she will be thrilled when I let her know. =)

    Frankine certainly does look like a bad *ss. LOL

    1. I love that story about the police officer, Jim. It proves that grooming is considered essential even in macho professions like police work. I don’t know if the FURminator folks would be quite as pleased to know that their product doesn’t hold up to daily use.

      I have corrected my attribution of Zeus’s background to reflect that he is all American Pit Bull Terrier — a fact of which he (and you!) should be proud. And, yeah, I saw the picture of Zeus and his blankie that you posted on Twitter the other day. Another badass, like Frankie.

      I’ve also corrected the spelling of Su’s last name, so by the time she looks at my blog — I hope — I won’t be embarrassed by the typo.

  8. Pingback: Weekend Update September 5, 2009 | Dog Spelled Forward
    1. Thanks for the mention, Eric. Hope future posts help with Project Eric and Buddha Clean Up (or is that Tune Up?).

      I in turn am wondering at your time traveling tendencies. I couldn’t help but notice that your Weekend Update was dated September 5, 2009… Very prescient.

  9. September 2009? Not what I would call prescient. But maybe we are with the immortals here!
    As for daily grooming, I happen to share life with five — count ’em 5 — dogs. Fortunately, two of them are wash and wear types, but still, daily???????
    Please, please don’t tell them!

  10. Well I stepped in it, didn’t I. Sorry Edie, I gotta learn to stop coloring outside the lines. And here I thought my new attempt at brevity–given the tomes I was putting out in previous comments–would stop me…sheesh:( Fail!

    1. Not at all, Mary. I was just kidding about your depriving me of more to write about; as one who shies away from brevity herself, I’ve got plenty! And you’ve hit it right on the head with that observation about grooming, a topic that I’ll get back to — honest — as soon as I get some philosophical musings off my chest..,

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