Tibetan Terriers need to be groomed regularly, so it is essential that short grooming sessions be introduced to your dog from an early age. From the very beginning, set aside a few minutes each day to groom, the duration building up slowly as the puppy matures and the coat grows in length. Your Tibetan Terrier puppy should be taught to stand on a solid surface for grooming, a suitable table on which the dog will not slip, but under no circumstances leave your dog alone on a table for fear of injury.
You will certainly need to groom your dog’s coat between bath times, but never groom the coat when it is completely dry. To avoid breaking the ends of your dog’s coat, use a light conditioning spray; even water dispensed from a fine-spray bottle is better than no moisture at all.
To begin with, just introduce your Tibetan Terrier to a few gentle brush strokes. Don’t tug at any knots at this stage, for this would cause him to associate grooming sessions with discomfort. You will notice that your Tibetan Terrier’s coat not only grows longer with age but eventually changes from a puppy coat to an adult dog coat. This will be a difficult time when knots will form all too easily, and you will realize how comparatively easy grooming your puppy has been until then!
Routine Dog Grooming
Your Tibetan Terrier’s coat should be parted, layered and brushed section by section, always in the direction of the coat growth. It is imperative to groom right down to the dog’s skin so that the undercoat is not left matted. After using a good-quality bristle brush, a wide-toothed comb can be used to finish each section.
If you do find mats in your Tibetan Terrier’s coat, spray the mat with a generous amount of conditioning or anti-tangle spray. Leave this to soak in your dog’s coat for a few moments, then gently tease out the mat with your fingers. Always work from the inside out, or the knot will just get tighter! Tight knots will probably need to be teased out of your Tibetan Terrier using a wide-toothed comb, but don’t tug at the knot for this will be painful and will also take out too much of the dog’s coat.
Take care grooming your dog’s tummy and under his armpits, for these areas are especially sensitive. Whatever you do, take care not to cut through a nipple—and remember that male dogs have little nipples too!
To prevent knots and tangles, immediately remove any debris which may have accumulated following a visit outdoors. Also, always check your Tibetan Terrier’s back end to see that nothing remains attached to the coat. Between baths you may like to use a damp sponge, but always dry your dog’s coat thoroughly.
Some dogs don’t seem to mind having their feet groomed; others hate it. Nonetheless, you will have to check your Tibetan Terrier’s feet thoroughly on a regular basis. Don’t allow knots to build up between your dog’s toes, and always keep an eye on the length of the toenails.
Excerpt from Tibetan Terrier, part of the Comprehensive Owner’s Guide series, with permission from its publisher, Kennel Club Books, a division of BowTie Inc. Purchase Tibetan Terrier here.