The basic rule of thumb in dog grooming is, the more luxurious the coat, the more intensive the grooming needs. This isn't true of the Japanese spitz, whose bright-white coat is mostly self-cleaning. However, the coat sheds heavily, which means you'll brush him frequently just to remove dead hair.
Brush your bushy buddy. The thick, white coat of your spitz typically stands out, making him look like an exploded cotton ball. Brush your canine cotton ball at least two or three times a week to remove as much dead hair as possible. Otherwise, the hair will end up all over your house. Use a pin brush to get through his thick coat. Spritz your spitz with a detangling spray to minimize broken hairs as you brush. Work out mats by wetting them with the detangler, breaking them apart with your fingers, and then brushing them smooth.
Bathe your spitz only as necessary. Your pal's coat puts non-stick cookware to shame, releasing even the muddiest mud from his hair with little trouble. In most cases, all you need to do is let your muddy spitz dry completely, then brush him to remove the dirt. He should need a bath once every few months, unless he decides to roll in something stinky. Use a mild dog shampoo and conditioner, and rinse thoroughly. Brush the coat as you blow it dry to achieve the bushy look. His hair will look flat if you leave it to air-dry.
Clean your friend's ears and eyes with a moistened cotton ball once a week. Having a brilliant white coat means that any little bit of dirt will show, and this includes any icky discharge from his eyes or ears. Check your puff-ball's ears at least weekly for signs of something amiss, such as unusual redness, swelling or smell. Wipe the ear out with a cotton ball moistened with some warm water or a commercial ear cleanser. Tear stains are common in white dogs, caused by tears reacting with the natural bacteria on the face. Use a wet washcloth or cotton ball to wipe away discharge. Commercial tear-stain cleaners help remove any stubborn stains.
Brush your buddy's teeth at least three times a week. Your spitz doesn't have much natural doggie odor, but his mouth could be a different story. Brush his chompers regularly to remove any bacteria or tartar before they can cause dental problems or bad breath.
- Your bushy spitz can quickly go from neatly trimmed to overgrown, so have a professional groomer give him a trim every month or so to keep him looking neat.
- If you hear a click-click-click on the kitchen floor as your buddy trots through to get a drink, his nails are too long and need to be trimmed. Trimming must avoid the quick, the extremely sensitive pink tissue inside the nail that contains nerves and blood supply. If you cut into the quick, the result will be bleeding, yelping and bad feelings all around. If you are not an expert at cutting a dog's nails, have a groomer or your vet cut them.
- A heavy shedder, your spitz will lose his coat once or twice a year. During this time he will shed horrendously, meaning you'll need to increase your brushing sessions to daily. If you don't keep up with the hair as he sheds, it will mat, making grooming even more difficult and time-consuming.
Jane Williams began her writing career in 2000 as the writer and editor of a nationwide marketing company. Her articles have appeared on various websites. Williams briefly attended college for a degree in administration before embarking on her writing career.