How to groom a puppy for the first time

Tips for introducing a puppy to the grooming experience

A puppy’s first groom is an important experience that will set the tone for that pup’s behaviour in the grooming salon for the rest of its life. And if done with care, it will make your experience easier grooming it in future appointments.

The earlier you can get the Puppy to their first groom the better, after their last set of vaccinations is ideal as the younger the puppy, the more receptive it'll be to training. 

Patience is key when introducing a Puppy to the Salon, but if done right it will save you time and stress in the future. Be patient at all times.


The goal of that first appointment is to familiarise the puppy with each part of the grooming process, from ear plucking to the sound and sensation of clippers.

Spend 10 or 15 minutes with the dog and its owners getting them used to the process in as mild an introduction as possible. Interact with the pup in a friendly positive manner and gain their trust, petting and cuddling a little. Get them used to being comfortable with you in the environment of your salon.

Interact with the dog with the various grooming tools, even if not using them, so they get used to the experience. Give them a bath, brush them, clip the very tip of the nail just to get them used to the tool, take the clipper on the lowest setting and with the blade facing away from the coat get the Puppy used to the noise and feel of the clippers around the head, legs etc.

Source: User wsilver via Flickr

Educate the Owners

While you have the Puppy in with its owners this is your chance to show them the best way to look after their precious new member of the family. Show them what type of brush you are using and talk to them about the best ways to maintain the coat type that their puppy has. The better the owner understands the grooming process and what they should do between grooms the better condition the dog will come into your salon, hopefully!

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