Even if you plan to have your Newfoundland puppy professionally groomed on a regular basis, you’ll need to have some grooming tools handy. As noted in an earlier Lifestages article, Newfs are high-grooming-needs dogs, so unless you’re taking your dog to the groomer several times a week, you have to be prepared to do at least basic grooming to keep your dog’s coat in good condition – and to help make sure your house is cleaner and those groomer visits are less expensive. Ignoring your dog’s coat is inviting all sorts of trouble.
Brushes are the first thing you’ll need; these can’t be considered optional. You should have, at the least, a pin brush and a slicker brush. The slicker brush can quickly smooth out at least the upper layers of your dog’s coat, getting out all of the debris your dog will inevitably bring in the house and making him or her look pretty spiffy in short order. But to remove tangles and avoid matting, you need to get deeper into the dog’s coat, and that’s where a pin brush is required.
But brushes alone won’t do the trick, for even a pin brush won’t thoroughly get down to the undercoat, the shorter, softer hair that’s closer to your dog’s skin. For this, you’ll need either a comb or an undercoat rake (or both).
Nail clippers or grinders should also be on your list, again unless you’re prepared to have your dog’s nails professionally clipped every week or so. Other tools that owners should have include a pair of straight-edge grooming shears on hand for keeping the hair on the bottom of their feet short, to improve footing on slick floors.
While grooming a Newf coat can indeed be a daunting prospect, it is also a good time to bond with your dog. Remember to take steps slowly and use praise and treats to keep the puppy comfortable. This will help with all of the years of grooming that lie ahead. These basic tools should get you through the daily coat care with your Newf.
If you want to bathe or groom your Newf yourself, you may want to acquire additional equipment such as a dog dryer, thinning shears (at least 36 teeth) and a grooming table.