We can’t deny it. We have a passion for Doodle dogs! Who can help it!? Those sweet faces, their fun personalities, and their fluffy, curly coats add up to one irresistible dog.
But… about those coats. A lot of people are drawn to Doodles because of their reputation for being non-shedding dogs. This leads some people to believe that Doodle coats are low maintenance. If you’re a Doodle parent, then you know that just isn’t the case.
With a fluffy coat comes great responsibility. Doodle coats can vary between curly, wavy, and straight. Most fall in between curly and wavy. This means that their coats require extra care to prevent mats and tangles. These aren’t just ugly to look at, they can also be painful and damaging to the dog’s skin.
Doodle coats require careful maintenance, especially the curly Doodles with more Poodle-ish coats. The exact care your Doodle’s coat needs depends on their hair type, but we can help get you started. We have some Doodle grooming tips that are great for any Doodle.
Grooming Tips For Your Doodle
1. Start your Doodle on a routine as soon as possible. You may have heard that you should wait until your Doodle is a year old to get them groomed. This is just bad advice. The sooner you get your puppy used to a grooming routine, the better. Brushing your puppy is a great way to bond and if done regularly, once to twice a week, will get your puppy used to a routine.
Get your dog used to you handling their feet as a puppy. As part of the brushing routine, make sure you touch their feet and handle them as much as possible. This will make nail trims much easier in the future.
2. Brushing your Doodle is extremely important. If you get a Doodle puppy, don’t be surprised when their coat changes. It’s nothing you did! Puppies will eventually shed those soft, wispy coats and grow in their adult coats. Their coat will change in texture and sometimes even color! This is when having a brushing routine will really pay off.
Curly Doodle coats can cause painful mats if not properly cared for. Doodle coats don’t fluff everywhere, but they do lose hairs. These get tangled in their undercoat and need to be removed by brushing.
3. Make sure you get your Doodle trimmed regularly. Depending on the coat type of your individual Doodle, every 4-6 weeks is recommended. This will keep your Doodle from developing nasty mats and tangles. Doodle coats tend to do better with shorter cuts. A shorter, fluffy cut helps prevent matting and keeps your Doodle’s hair manageable between trims.
4. Brush your Doodle before bathing. Even if you have a trusted groomer, there will be a time when your Doodle decides to put on “perfume” and rolls in something rotten. For those times you have to bathe your Doodle at home, always remember to brush your Doodle before they get wet. If your Doodle has matted hair anywhere it will become a nightmare the minute water touches it. Wet mats suck up water, which makes them almost impossible to brush out. This will then hold moisture against the skin causing irritation, yeast, and possibly even mold.
5. If you have to bathe your Doodle at home, make sure you dry them thoroughly. Use a microfiber towel to suck up excess water, and use a blow dryer on the cool setting to dry that coat. Thorough drying is important because of the bane of Doodle existence… mats.
6. Don’t forget the ears and eyes. Excess ear hair can cause irritation and wax buildup in the ear. Too much ear hair can also keep the inside of the ear too moist, which can lead to painful ear infections. Hair falling in the eyes is more than just a nuisance. Stray hairs can irritate eyes, and if you’ve ever gone too long between bang trims, you know that it will also block your dog's vision. Check your dog’s ears and eyes between grooming appointments to keep those wild hairs in check.
7. Make sure you have the right tools to handle a Doodle coat.
A slicker brush. The slicker brush is good for smoothing and detangling the coats of every Doodle hair type.
A metal detangling comb. This is useful for getting rid of the deep knots that can form.
Detangling spray for dogs. There’s nothing extra about using hair products on your dog (as long as it’s formulated for dogs). Detangling spray will help the comb glide through the knots and keep brushing a pleasant experience.
A hairdryer for pets. Okay, this may not be entirely necessary, but it sure is helpful. Pet hair dryers don’t get as hot as human dryers, protecting your Doodle's skin from burns. They also have a higher velocity, which reduces drying time.
Microfiber towels. Keep these on hand for those times you need to bathe your Doodle at home. Microfiber towels pull the water out of the hair more quickly than a standard towel. This decreases the time you will need to spend blow drying your dog.
Small grooming scissors. Keep these on hand for quick face and ear trims between professional grooming appointments.
8. Find a groomer you can trust. Of course, you can groom your Doodle at home, but to really keep your pup looking sharp, a professional groomer is the way to go. They’ll know the right way to clip your Doodle for looks and function.
With a professional groomer in your arsenal, you will only need to worry about thorough brushing and the occasional urgent bath or trim. Your groomer will be able to advise you on the type of care your Doodle's coat type requires and get them on the right type of grooming routine.
Doodles really are amazing dogs! But like any dog, they come with their own unique responsibilities. To learn more about Doodles, check out this helpful blog post. Oh, and don’t forget to visit the Dog Friendly Living shop! We’ve got so many Doodle-centric goodies that you won’t be able to resist… like this My Doodle is Cuter Than Your BF Relaxed Tee!