Important questions to ask your dog bather

If you have a new dog or are taking your dog to the dog bather or groomer for the first time, there are definitely some questions you should get answers to. Just like any other service professional, not all dog bathers are equal. You’ll want to feel as comfortable as possible leaving your dog in the care of a relative stranger. Here are some important questions to ask your dog bather.

What experience and certifications do you have?

The dog bather should be able to easily answer this question. The more years of experience, generally, the better they should be. That doesn’t mean a new professional isn’t as good or even better than an experience professional, but experience is usually an asset. Additionally, dog groomers can get certifications which require certain competencies and skills. There are a number of these certification organizations out there and it’s best to get bathers who have some form of certification.

What breeds do you specialize in?

You want to ask this question because bathing and grooming differs between breeds. For example, some dog breeds have hair others have fur. Bathing and grooming practices will be different. Some dogs have certain areas that need to be cleaned, such as the wrinkles of a bulldog’s face. Every breed is different and knowing which ones your bather is experienced with can help you make your choice.

Can I see the facilities and view a grooming?

If the dog bather won’t let you visit and view their facilities, that is a serious red flag. This process should be totally transparent. A lot of dog groomers will actually have viewing windows to show people what their grooming process looks like. It’s best if you can watch your dog being groomed, at least the first time.

What types of products do you use?

Dog bathers should be able to show you the exact product they use for your breed of dog. You want to make sure they aren’t using any harsh chemical because this could cause skin irritation on your dog. In addition, there are different types of dryers for dogs. There are heated dryers and recirculated air dryers. The former is generally worse, as it could cause heat related conditions is certain breeds.

What services are included in your pricing packages and how long does bathing take?

This final question isn’t so much for your dog’s wellbeing as it is for your wallet’s. The dog bather should be up front with exactly what services will be performed for what dollar amount. They should also be able to give you a general timeframe for how long the grooming process will take.

For information about boarding your dog contact Camp Diego or call us at 619-224-2267.

What are some of the healthiest dog foods?

Healthiest Dog Foods

Dogs eat a lot of food making it tempting to opt for a low or reasonably priced brand. However, that might not be the best choice because different brands include dramatically different ingredients in their foods. Walking dog the pet food aisle can be overwhelming with so many different types and brands of food. So what are some of the healthiest dog foods?

Check the Ingredients

One of the main things you’ll want to do is check the ingredients of a dog food. You want to look for whole ingredients; berries, flaxseed, quinoa, oatmeal, brown rice, salmon oil, and primary proteins like beef, chicken, fish, duck, and more. The ingredients your dog eats shouldn’t be all that different from the foods you should be consuming. They require a slightly different balance in their diet but eating whole ingredients is an important part of that diet.

Avoid “feed-grade” ingredients. Avoid any chemicals, preservatives, dyes, and contaminants. Just like your own food, it’s good to look for ingredients you can actually pronounce. These fillers and preservatives can have a negative impact on your dog’s health.

Healthiest Dog Foods

There are a lot of great brands out there and lot more that are great for dogs in specific situations (ex: senior aged dogs, diabetic dogs, etc.). With that said, here are some great brands of healthy dog food to consider.

Blue Buffalo

This extremely popular brand shows up on almost every healthy dog food list. It can be found at virtually every pet store for good reason. They use quality ingredients that are balanced for the type of nutrients your dog needs. 


Another great option, Merrick uses whole ingredients and even includes probiotics which are great for the gut health and digestive system of your dog.


Fromm is another great brand that provides your dog with a dry food filled with quality, whole ingredients.

Wellness Core

Wellness Core is a simple, high protein food that is great for your dog. Their wet dog food option gives you a great alternative to standard dry kibble.

When determining what dog foods will be the healthiest, always consult the ingredients. If there are too many ingredients or a plethora of ingredients you cannot pronounce, it might not be the best choice.

For information about boarding your dog contact Camp Diego or call us at 619-224-2267.

When is the best time to start training your dog?

Best Time to Start Training Your Dog

When it comes to training your dog, there really is no bad time to get started. Generally, you can start training a puppy as soon as you take them home. The only situation in which you might hold off on training, is if the puppy still has not been weaned from the mother. Even though you can start training immediately, when is the best time to start training your dog?

Early Morning

Your dog will have some morning routines it will need to do. It will need to relieve itself, eat, and have some time to explore or exercise. This is a great time to get some training in. Prior to bringing your dog outside to relieve itself, simply have your dog sit and/or lie down before opening the door. This will help reinforce in your dog that it needs to be let out of the house and that it doesn’t have free will to just run out of the door.

Before setting your dog’s bowl of food out, run through some training exercises such as sitting, lying down, staying, or giving you paw.

When Your Dog Performs a Desirable Action

Training your dog throughout the day doesn’t need to involve a complete setup or specified training period. If you have a new dog, just pay attention to its normal actions. When it performs an action that you as the owner desires, reward your dog with a treat.

For example, most owners like it when their dog lies down and relaxes. When your dog does this, reward it by giving it a treat. If they go willingly into their crate, reward it with a treat. The goal is for your dog to offer these behaviors to you more often.

When Your Dog Needs to Expel Energy

There will be periods throughout the day that your dog needs to expel some excess energy. These are great times for a walk and training. A walk or other type of exercise will help physically stimulate your dog. You can incorporate training elements to your walk such as sitting and waiting until you start walking again. You can also work on “heel” and other leash-based commands.

Training your dog while it has excess energy also helps to stimulate your dog mentally. Mental stimulation will tire out your dog. Your dog wants to please you and it knows that completing a desired action will please you. So your dog will be working its brain to the max to try and give you a desired behavior, thus expelling a lot of pent up energy.

For information about boarding your dog contact Camp Diego or call us at 619-224-2267.

What do you do with a dog that doesn’t get along with other dogs?

When it comes to your dog, you give it unconditional love. However, that love is often tested if you have a dog that doesn’t get along with other dogs. It could involve situations of fierce barking, growling, and even a fight. So what do you do with a dog that doesn’t get along with other dogs?

Essentially you have two options. You can either avoid other dogs at all costs or train your dog to socialize. Let’s look at these two options. … Continue reading

What To Do When Your Dog Is Shedding Like Crazy


dog shedding


Just because your dog is shedding like crazy, it doesn’t mean you need to panic. A large amount of dog breeds shed naturally. This is their bodies way of removing damaged or old hair. Different breeds shed different amounts than others and even within breeds, some dogs will shed more than others. So if your dog is shedding like crazy, you need to identify if this shedding is abnormal. Here is what to do when your dog is shedding like crazy. … Continue reading

Signs of Fleas and How To Treat Them

dog bathing for fleas


The vast majority of dogs are fairly low maintenance. They don’t need daily bathing, grooming, and aren’t prone to as many illnesses as humans. However, dogs are extremely susceptible to fleas. These gnarly little parasites can cause serious discomfort for most dogs and can even lead to worse conditions if your dog is highly allergic to them or the flea transmits a disease.

So what are the signs of fleas and how do you treat them? Let’s take a look first at some common ways to identify these parasites. … Continue reading

How to Determine Whether to Take Your Dog On Vacation With You


dog on vacation


There aren’t too many people who dislike vacations. There also aren’t too many people that dislike having pets. So when those two attributes cross, the love of vacations and the love of pets, there can often be an internal conundrum. So how should you determine whether to take your dog on vacation with you or not? Here are a few things to consider when you are stuck in this predicament. … Continue reading

How to Choose The Right Dog Groomer

san diego dog groomingChoosing the right dog groomer for your dog isn’t as simple as Google-ing “dog groomer” and choosing the first search result. It will likely involve you tearing yourself away from your computer screen. You are going to want first hand accounts of the grooming business. So without further ado, here is how to choose the right dog groomer. … Continue reading

5 of the Most Innovative Pet Toys

dog toy

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Pets are a huge part of the family and you want to see them happy, just like you’d want to see any other family member happy. Bringing home great treats or a new toy is one way to perk up your bored pup. For those with inquisitive dogs, sometimes the standard ball or chew toy doesn’t cut it. They need an interactive toy that is mentally stimulating. Luckily pet owners are also innovators and have come up with some really great toys. Here are five of the most innovative pet toys. … Continue reading

Benefits To Dog Crate Training


dog crate training

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Crate training your dog is controversial to some people, but mainly because its purpose is misunderstood. Many of those opposed to crate training assume that if you are crate training your dog, you are are doing so with the intention of using it as punishment. This couldn’t be further from the truth however. There are a ton of benefits to crate training your dog in a positive way. … Continue reading