Grooming For the American Bulldog

One of the biggest benefits to owning an American Bulldog is that they are not a demanding breed to groom and do not shed very much. Their fur is short and coarse, and thus they don't require very frequent brushing, though most dogs do enjoy being brushed just for the sensation of it.

If you are lucky enough to have your American Bulldog during puppyhood, this is the ideal time to begin grooming. They are an energetic and muscular breed, and being used to the grooming process will make it a lot easier down the road when they are full-grown and may not want to sit still in a tub full of water!
Even though their coats are not demanding, American Bulldogs still need to be brushed every so often. A soft-bristled brush is the best option, so that their skin doesn't get nicked and the experience is enjoyable, even relaxing, for your dog. Brushes with metal teeth may be too harsh for your bulldog because their coats are so close to the skin. Test the brush out on yourself before using it on your pet to determine whether or not it might hurt. If your bulldog acts like he is irritated or in pain from the brushing, try a softer brush. There are brushing gloves available that can help this process. Brushing gloves are rubber and have little rubber rivets and spikes that can help remove shed hair without any pain. Your dog may even just think you're petting him! Always brush from the head to the rump with the grain of the fur, otherwise brushing can be uncomfortable.

Your American Bulldog will also need to be bathed occasionally. If he is a messy pup that likes to play in the mud or the sand, he will need more frequent bathing than usual. American Bulldog owners should be careful not to bathe their pets too frequently, however, as over-bathing can strip the fur of essential oils and minerals that keep their skin and coat healthy and attractive. One bath every month or two should suffice as long as your bulldog is not getting too dirty during playtime.

The actual bath is a relatively simple process for the American Bulldog, because their coat is short, thin, and coarse. To bathe your bulldog, run a bath with warm water. Bathing by hose outdoors is acceptable if you can control the water temperature and it is warm outside, but it is not advised otherwise. After the dog is thoroughly saturated with warm water, work some shampoo into his or her coat. You can choose from any number of dog shampoos at your local pet store. Your dog and his or her coat may respond more favorably to one shampoo over another, so it is okay to test out various brands and formulas with some trial and error.
Be sure to clean the paws and around the anus, where dirt and bacteria are likely to collect. Once your dog is shampooed, he or she can be immediately rinsed. Make sure you do a thorough job rinsing your dog, as the slightest bit of leftover soap can cause a maddening itch!

Because of their short coats, American Bulldogs can be dried with nothing more than a towel and, if weather permits, a romp outside on a sunny day. With proper training to get your pet used to the process, grooming an American Bulldog is a snap!

This article was written by John Jackson and has been contributed by http://www.greatdogsite.com For more information on the American Bulldog, please visit our page http://www.greatdogsite.com/breeds/details/American_Bulldog/

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