How to Shave a Puppy's Butt

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Long-haired dog breeds, like Pomeranians, have long hair on their rear ends and need to have a shaved butt. Thankfully, shaving and trimming a perfect puppy butt only requires some time, patience, and electric pet clippers.

Trimming a puppy's butt takes a little practice.
Image Credit: IuriiSokolov/iStock/GettyImages

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If you skip shaving your dog's behind, you run the risk of a dirty rear end with matted hair and outdoor debris. When your dog defecates, it's possible that the feces will get stuck in his fur, leading to clumping and a mess. Save yourself some trouble (and foul smells) by regularly grooming your dog's butt. A professional groomer should handle any dog competing in a show ring, but you can otherwise handle shaving him at home.

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It's going to be much easier for puppies to acclimate to shaving sessions when they are used to being groomed. Designate a spot in your home where you work on grooming activities together and take time to rub their paw pads, brush their teeth, touch their coat, and feed them treats. And even if you choose to do most of your puppy's grooming at home, they should still visit a groomer when they are between 12 to 16 weeks old. Grooming appointments with new people, appliances, and locations can excite or stress out older dogs, so you want to make it a part of their normal environment as early as you can.

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A tired puppy will be more manageable and easier to groom. Set aside some time for some vigorous play that gets your puppy moving. The best choice for playtime will be an activity your puppy loves — like tug of war or fetch — that also makes him or her run around. When they are more settled down, you can begin grooming.

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How to shave a puppy butt

Step 1: Brush your puppy's butt

Before starting your shaving session, brush your puppy's coat. Check for anything stuck in your dog's fur, including debris, like burrs, weeds, and mats, as well as any pests, like fleas or ticks. Use a damp towel to clean off any debris. Look for any cuts or scrapes on her body. If you find any pests, use an at-home treatment or contact your veterinarian. Shaving your dog's behind without brushing first can result in tangles and mats being yanked out, which can be painful.

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Step 2: Choose the equipment to use

Using scissors is OK, but grooming clippers designed for pets are a safer choice. If your puppy suddenly jumps or jerks, even after you've secured him, he could get poked or nipped by a pair of scissors. Additionally, having treats on hand to reward your dog can help keep him calm and easy to control.

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Step 3: Turn on the clippers and let the puppy adjust

If you've never used electric clippers on your precious puppy before, you need to give her a chance to adjust to them for a better grooming experience. Turn on the clippers and give your puppy the chance to get used to the sound. You can run the electric clipper around your puppy's body without touching her to help her get comfortable with the noise, rewarding her with treats and compliments throughout.

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Step 4: Secure your puppy before beginning grooming

Safely secure your dog before clipping them.
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Before you pick up the grooming clippers, you need to have your dog safely secured so that he doesn't injure himself. Place him on a flat, nonstick surface, like the bathtub, or in a sink for small breeds. Hold your dog underneath your arm and place him on his back. Puppies, in particular, can be exuberant, so it's extra important to secure them — and if they are moving around too much, feel free to take a break.

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If you have other pets in the house, secure them outside of your grooming area so they don't unexpectedly interrupt the grooming session and accidentally mess up your trimming.

Step 5: Trim the perfect shaved dog butt

The time to begin trimming your puppy's fur depends on their breed. Generally speaking, when their fur around your puppy's anus becomes overgrown and starts blocking the opening, they need a trim.

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Begin trimming the butt by lifting the tail and gently trimming a circle around the anus. Trim with the clippers away from the anus in small, gentle strokes. Then, use a brush to scrape away any loose fur.

Always keep the clippers away from your dog's skin. Clippers can nip, scratch, and even burn her sensitive skin. Always cut away from her skin and never place the blade right on the anus or genitals.

Step 6: Take your time

Just like when you groom your precious puppy, you need to be patient with him. Many dogs are sensitive about their behinds, and the skin around their anus and genitals is sensitive. If possible, have another person with you to stand near your dog's head to pet and reassure him. Alternatively, place some peanut butter on a nearby wall or treat dispenser for your dog to lick so he is distracted. Brush away any loose fur as you go.

Pay attention to your puppy's body language as you groom them. If they are showing signs of stress (like growling or panting) or are being unruly and difficult to manage, stop the grooming session. You can always try again later.

Step 7: Maintain the shaved dog butt

A professional groomer can help you learn how to shave a dog.
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The shaved dog butt you carefully groomed will grow out over time, so it's important to keep up the routine. If you let it grow out, your dog's fur may end up a matted mess filled with debris or feces.

Check on your puppy's butt once a month and shave as needed. If you're not comfortable continuing to shave your canine companion's backside, visit a professional dog groomer instead.

Things You'll Need

  • Something to secure your pet with

  • Brush

  • Damp towel

  • Electric pet clippers

  • Treats

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