Pet Grooming: Should I shave my dog if it has skin problems?

If your dog ever suffered from skin problems, you’d realize that sometimes it takes forever to cure. Even vets need to do some trial and error, and neither do they have any magic bullet that’ll stop the problem from resurfacing months later. This is because, as mentioned in my earlier post on chronic skin problems, skin problems can be caused by anything. As a result, not only is it torturing to the poor animals going through all that itch, it’s heartbreaking for us to see them this way and frustrating trying to find out the cause.

What seems right might not necessarily be

In our quest for a solution, we are often made to believe that shaving down the dog for the easy application of creams and observing the condition was a good idea. Although it may sound logical and a practice widely propagated by vets and groomers, just imagine for a moment you had a rash somewhere, and you ran a clipper across it. It’s the same as how scratching makes a rash worse or how shaving usually irritates our skin; clipping usually irritates the skin and if you were to shave the whole dog down, imagine the itch from their nose all the way to their tail!


And what would they do when they have that insatiable need to kill off that itch? They scratch, chew, and lick on the itch until the skin becomes red, raw, and wounded, But still, it itches, and scratching and chewing are the only ways they know how. So the vicious cycle continues until the point of self-mutilation, and we have no choice but to don the Elizabethan collar, also infamously known as the cone of shame on them.

Don’t cause unnecessary problems for yourself.

Even for dogs with perfectly normal skin, shaving too close sometimes causes redness and irritation, especially on sensitive areas like paws, throat, groin, anal region, and under the belly.

That’s why I don’t recommend customers to have their pets’ feet shaven bald for whatever reasons, be it because their pets lick their paws or because of the discolored paws from the licking. Usually, shaving only makes matters worse, and it’s more important to find the cause of the behavior rather than aggravate the problem.

If you really have to

However, if you insist that clipping is to be done, please instruct the groomer to leave at least a centimeter of their coat. During the grooming process, the shorter the cut, the smaller the blade would be used – the problem with that is the edge of the blade in contact with your pets’ skin would be sharper and heats up faster, two of the most common irritant during pet grooming.

Besides, the coat acts as a protective layer, and it’ll buffer the skin against any external irritants they’re being exposed to daily (e.g., chemicals, materials, heat, etc., which they’re allergic to). Furthermore, the coat also cushions the skin when the dog chews on or scratches itself. 


And since most vets prescribe shampoos instead of topical creams, the medication would have no problem working down to the skin.

Have questions on pet grooming? Write them down in the comments below, and I’ll be glad to answer them!

About the blog

Hi, and welcome to The Grooming Table’s page!

I hope this effort of mine can improve the lives of pets and animals

I’m excited that I finally found the courage and time to start writing about pet care. After working in the pet industry as a pet groomer for almost 3 years now, it’s heartening to see people going to great lengths to care for their pets, as well as less fortunate animals. Yet, on the other hand, there are so owners who wish to take better care of there but have no idea how to do so, or worse yet, getting wrong or obsolete information.

So often, I’ll have pets that come in, which are so mentally out of balance really gave me the urgency to start communicating to the masses. There is only so much I can do if I just educate my customers one by one. I’m really excited about the fact that this has the potential of being able to help more animals and their owners achieve higher levels of relationships, health, and mental balance. So please help me to help them.

If you find my articles, tips, etc. useful, please share with your friends and encourage them to share as well so that all could benefit and hopefully start them on a journey towards taking better care of their pets. If just a handful would do so, I would have served my purpose. But of course, I will continue to strive harder so that more than just a handful can benefit. In addition, please, give me your feedback regarding anything at all – content, layout, English, anything! I’m new to this, and I would be very, very grateful.


This website has been created with the sole purpose of educating fellow pet lovers on the different aspects of pet care, focusing on natural and holistic approaches in an Asian context.

Though this journey has been rewarding working as a pet groomer, it has also brought me great pain seeing all the animals who could have deserved better – and they all should deserve better. But I can’t blame society because I used to be one of them. That’s why in the articles, I’ll try to include numerous tips and tricks that I’ve learned to help you save time and money (but please don’t ever scrimp on quality food and products) while keeping your pet in tip-top condition.

“I really don’t have the time!”

It’s a chore taking care of your pets – that used to be my excuse, and I agree it takes time and effort. But yet, our furry ones have continued to give us their 100% of their love (I’m writing this, and my two years old Silky-look-alike-’Yorkie’ is jumping non-stop, begging for my attention.), and that’s one of the main reasons I joined the pet industry – it’s my way of giving back to them.

From then on, I started reading whatever I could on pet care, and I realized that a lot of people could really benefit from the information out there! Just that there’s a small problem: I can only help that many pets as a groomer. I needed to reach out to more people.

Help me, help them.

So again, if you feel the same way I am, if you feel more animals deserve help, do me a favor, would you? If you find this website helpful, let your friends and family know. Secondly, I’m still learning, and I hope this community should also build on each others’ knowledge. If you have a topic you feel strongly about, do write to me, and I’ll post it on this site (credited to you, of course). But please cite your sources if you have made any references in your articles. It is just to help readers find additional information on the subject matter and avoid plagiarism.

Help spread the word.

For the love of those who love us the most,


P.S. If you’re interested in knowing more about the pet grooming services we have to offer, please give us a call @ 9199 2024 or 9489 5882. Especially if your dogs have chronic skin problems, we’ll love to see how we can use natural products to help. Looking forward to seeing you!

Pet Grooming: The Never Ending Struggle With Ticks

In Singapore, ticks are just like mosquitoes. Even as the weather turns cooler, I’ve still been getting a lot of complaints about ticks lately. Inevitably, I’ve brought a few home from the grooming shop and passed it on to my poor dogs.


Some of you who bring your dogs out for daily walks may often find ticks on them and you may have chosen monthly spot-on treatments as a form of convenient solution. However, based on personal experiences and feedback from customers, it’s effectiveness

on subsequent applications is questionable. Why? I really do not know and neither have I found any answers online. Instead of answers, I found more people complaining about the same problem on the internet.

Bio-X d-Bug Flea & Tick Spray

What I have realised that works though, is using sprays and switching around brands often. Although I do not know why spray works better, but it may be possible that some factors may be preventing spot on treatment to spread evenly throughout the body. So the most obvious advantage of using sprays is that you can make sure that the whole body is evenly treated. Secondly, be it sprays or spot on, the effects do wear out. So with sprays, you are able to give the protection a boost when ever needed with just a spritz here and there.

Resistance is Futile

It could be that some sort of resistance has been formed that made spot on treatments less effective as it should be. Also, I’ve experienced scenarios where I applied the spot on and the same brand of spray a week later, the spray did not work as effectively as before. Luckily, I had another brand of flea and tick spray with me and it worked quite well in the end.

Apart from having a different brand, it’s useful to note that you should have different active ingredients as well. Try switching around Fipronil, permethrins, Pyrethrins, as well as natural alternatives like Etofenprox. Neem and eucalyptus are more of a preventive measure than an insecticide. But if you have the patience and is meticulous enough to give your dog thorough checks, then of course I would recommend using natural alternatives.

I Will Find You, And I Will Kill You

Even after applying flea and tick products, it is still necessary to give your pets a thorough check to remove any dead creepers as well as to see if there’re still any live ones. It would really help if you pet has a short coat. If it doesn’t, I would recommend you bring it to a pet a stylist and get it trimmed short for ease of checking. Don’t give yourself too much credit for being meticulous. I even have problems finding those pesky ticks on my Maltese.  The animals’ health should be of top priority and it’s looks should come later.

If there’s really a lot of ticks on the body, you may request your pet groomer to remove the ticks for a charge. Just make sure the services includes the physical removal of the ticks rather than just soaking your poor dog in a chemical dip and just letting the ticks die attached to Fido. Worse still, sometimes they wouldn’t even die.

As a word of caution, do not let your pet groomer charge you by the number of ticks removed. It’s a good indication that the groomer is a rip-off. Charges for a small dog is usually $20-$30, maybe $40 tops (rarely), if the condition is really bad.

How to remove them

how to remove a tickOther than keeping a keen eye during daily grooming sessions, a particularly good time to groom for ticks is after bathing your dog and its body is still wet. The coat would stick would stick together and close to the skin, giving you a better view of the skin. If your dog’s coat is just a centimeter long, you can use a flea comb and by placing it almost flat against the dog’s skin, comb against the lay of the coat. Remove any ticks you have found on the flea comb with sticky tape.

Otherwise, you can use a strong hair dryer, set it to cool and use it to part the dog’s hair. Remove the tick  by holding the tick at the mouth and pulling straight up. Squeezing the tick or killing it whilst on the skin will risk releasing toxins and pathogens into your pet.

If you do find baby ticks crawling around your house, try to find where they hatched. But unfortunately, fogging your house is usually the solution.

Prevention is better than cure

Ticks usually wait on grasses for animals to pass by and latch on them. But I also have owners who let their pets roam around without having any tick problems. Similarly, I have also found that there are areas around my house where my dog commonly get ticks from. After I change the walking route, my dogs seldom got ticks any more.

For topical prevention, mix water, a few drops of dog shampoo, neem oil and eucalyptus oil into a bottle and apply over their body. Towel lightly and dry them as usual. This method usually lasts two days tops.

Remember, keep your pets away from grass, apply flea and tick spray every 3-4 days and check everyday.

If you find this article useful, please share it and if you like us particular grooming tips, please share them in the comments below!