How to Hold a Dog for Grooming

This Yorkie is ready for some TLC on the grooming table.
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Grooming a dog is an essential part of pet ownership, and although many people choose to use professional groomers, you can groom your dog at home. Your dog must be taught to allow handling and to hold still. Prepare your dog for grooming by playing with his feet and toes, look in his mouth and ears, and try to hold him while he lies on his side.


Start by laying the dog on its side, and place one hand on his shoulder and one hand on his hip until he lies still. Keep one hand in place, and with the other, brush hair to the skin in layers. Then have the dog stand and hold him under the belly. Brush the hair on the legs and chest.

Head, Ears and Toenails

For the head and ears, have a helper hold the head at the jaw with an arm wrapped around the head. This will free your hands to clip and clean. For toenails, hold the dog against your body, and grasp his elbow firmly. Notice that the foot pops forward and presents the toenails for clipping.