A large dog active and adventurous with a love of water it has a coarse top coat and a soft oily and woolly undercoat which needs regular brushing and occasional washing dependent on how many times it manages to get very mucky and smelly when out on walks with you. It  has a coat which you must keep free of matting etc, and we would advise for the coarse coat a minimum weekly brushing session and for the softer coated dogs three times a week. Watch out for knotting on the underside, legs and head. Also pay close attention to their ears which many owners report are prone to infections.

As the Otterhound is a large dog a thick and long coat keeping your dog well groomed can be challenging and we would recommend that you maintain them with simple brushing and washing of their lower legs, ears and beard if dirty, usually simply with water and dry off with Roses Towels. A very active dog will probably need a good daily  brush to remove burs and other items which have lodged in their coat. After grooming run your hands all over the dog and if lumps found indicating matting or Tangling then gently comb these out, using a detangling lotion if necessary, but always be gentle and patient when detangling etc. On occasions they will require a full shampoo and wash, but please be sparing with these as too frequent washing can result in loss of oils in the coat making it appear dull. We would recommend you wash your dog as and when required but try to limit washing to every two weeks but ideally every month.

We strongly recommend a visit to your local Grooming Parlour for trimming around the paws, plus clipping of nails when required. During these visits it is alway’s a good idea to discuss with your groomer, grooming of your dog and obtaining handy hints for your own grooming sessions.

So, to maintain your Otterhound in Tip Top condition we recommend the following.

Before you start your shower and grooming sessions make sure you have all tools and materials required: –

Shampoo ensure you use a specific Dog Shampoo this will ensure that the Fur is maintained in great condition, Human Shampoo’s have different formulas not always compatible with your dog. Also a conditioner can help you maintain a lustrous and healthy looking coat. Some recommend that you dilute the shampoo and conditioner and then spray on to get the shampoo or conditioner into the undercoat, we would advise that if you knead the shampoo thoroughly into the coat is sufficient

What you will require

Dogs Towels 1 x Roses PVA Mega Absorbent Towel, and I x Roses Large Microfibre Towel As the Otterhound is a large dog it is advisable to use two large Microfibre Towels and two PVA Towels

1 x Roses Grooming and Drying Brush

1 X Good Quality Dog Bristle Brush , 1 x Good Quality Soft Pin Head Brush x Good Quality S/Steel Comb and 1 Good Quality Bristle Comb and during the Spring and Autumn moults a good quality Undercoat rake

A good supply of treats

Washing your Otterhound

Always before washing your dog we recommend giving a good brush and comb of their coat, and to maintain their coat in great condition they should be thoroughly brushed ideally weekly for coarse coats and every other day, for soft coats.

To wash your dog, use the shower if large enough! , (do not forget to use non-slip shower mat) or for larger dogs use the bath but always soothe your dog when using the bath as they may become distressed in this situation until they have been acclimatised .Do ensure the temperature of the water is comfortable for your dog and do ensure you use a bath mat to stop your dog sliding and slipping. When washing indoors please ensure the water is a comfortable temperature not too hot or too cold and where possible use a shower attachment if no shower head gently pour warm water over your dog to thoroughly wet its coat and then apply the shampoo and knead it thoroughly into the coat, if your dog has got extremely dirty you may need to repeat this process, but we would recommend whenever possible to apply shampoo only once. Now this is important when rinsing the shampoo out you must ensure that all shampoo is rinsed away as any residue can cause itchiness. Another key point we would make is to avoid getting shampoo into the eyes and keep the inside of ears away from shampoo and water. To clean the area around the eyes and ears we recommend that you use the PVA Towel as a flannel wiping these areas with the PVA towel and rinsing often to ensure that you are cleaning these areas and not just re-distributing the dirt.

If using a conditioner, repeat the process

When coat is thoroughly rinsed it is time to dry, firstly remove most of the excess water by dabbing the coat all over with the Mega Absorbent PVA Towel, squeezing out the towel regularly to ensure the maximum absorbency of the towel. Once all surplus water is removed then wrap your dog in a Roses Large Microfibre Towel gently rubbing the dog all over until the coat is as dry as possible. Do not rigorously towel dry, pat and dab dry this will help you to avoid tangling and knotting of the coat.

To thoroughly and quickly dry your Otterhound, connect your Roses Grooming and Drying Brush set on medium heat and low speed and start brushing and Drying the coat, always brushing with the fur not against it, some recommend you start with the head and work back towards the tail , the key advice we would give here is to ensure the whole coat is dry particularly around the base of the tail and around the ears, not forgetting the feathers on the legs. Also with the Otterhound that you thoroughly wash and brush under the chin ,the chest, the ‘armpits’, the head and ears. Ensure all the coat is brushed through and dry and if your dogs is a little anxious at first encourage with treats and words of encouragement. The best way to acclimatise your dog to bathing and Grooming sessions is to start when they are a puppy they will soon become acclimatised these grooming sessions and it will become an enjoyable experience for you and your dog. Once your dog is familiarised and comfortable with your Roses Grooming and Drying Brush you can increase the heat setting to full and increase the speed to high, but note when drying around the eyes and ears only use medium heat and low power. The permanent IONIC feature will ensure great condition to your dog’s coat and always give you great results when using a conditioner.

The choice of Brush head to use varies from Dog to Dog but generally we recommend the large square head for large areas such as sides and back, the oval brush head for use around the ears tail etc and the round rush head for under the chin and tops of front legs, but once you have used the tool a few times you will develop your own technique and use brush heads which feel give you the best results. Many owners advise us that the brush head they use the most and find most effective is the Oval Pin Head Brush

We know that following these simple instructions you will soon be getting great results and you and your Otterhound will enjoy these sessions which can help create an excellent bond between you and your dog and of course keep them looking great and smelling good most of the time.

Following a wet walk, you can also follow these guidelines if not dirty no need to shampoo, simply towel dry as outlined here and dry off with the Roses Grooming and Drying Brush, taking care to dry fur between the paws, and after cold winter walks your Otterhound will welcome being dry and warm.

We look forward to hearing your experiences and of course receiving pictures of your dog after your Grooming and Pampering Sessions


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