Anal Gland

Anal Sacs & Diseases

Anal sacs are two hollow structures that serve as a reservoir for an oily secretion that is emptied directly into them.

The purpose of this mechanism are for individual identification and territorial marking. The odor is distinct for each individual. That is why dogs tend to sniff each other beneath the tail.

If the sacs become overly full or inflamed, the dog may suffer considerable discomfort.

Four categories of anal sac disease:
1. Impaction
2. Sacculitis
3. Abscess
4. Neoplasia (tumor)

Impaction
Impaction is most common and happens when the secretion become trapped, stretching and enforcing the sacs. Possible causes of impaction include secretion that is too thick to pass through. Another contributing factor could be weak or sparse muscle fibers surrounding the sacs.

Sacculitis
Sacculitis is when bacteria proliferate in the sacs, usually entering through feces passing over the duct. Secretion turns yellowish, with or without blood, and result to anal sacculitis. Secretion may leak onto the surrounding area, causing anus and underside of the tail to become moist and sticky. 

Abscesses
Is a more advanced stage of sacculitis when the pus is trapped in the sac. This will cause the area to be warm, reddened and very painful. Eventually, it may break through the skin, exuding its contents made up of creamy or bloody thick material.

Neoplasia – Tumor
Tumor of glands are rare and can be a serious problem. It may grow locally, interfering with normal anal tone and function. May also spread or metastasize, to other parts of the body, causing organ dysfunction or even death.

If you suspect your fur kid have any anal sac issue, wait no further. A veterinary visit is a must.

Express Anal Gland

There are two ways to express the anal gland, external and internal. The external technique is done from the outside and is the most common method used. The internal technique we would usually recommend you to get your veterinarian to do it. As it is done with a lubricated finger inserted into the rectum. Usually a preferred method for heavy dogs, tense dogs or dogs with poor muscle tone when the sacs can’t be empty out with external technique.

Expressing anal gland (externally) will release a smelly liquid from the anus. Would advise to do it during shower as you can quickly wash the liquid away and clean your fur baby’s butt.

Steps to do an external technique:
1. Raise the tail to a vertical position.
2. Near the anus at the 4 and 8 o clock position, you might be able to feel a small lump.
3. Using your thumb and index finger, place it at the 4 and 8 o clock position.
4. Push upwards to express the anal gland.

Note: Anal gland may squirt or flow out. Never ever place your face right in front of your fur baby’s rear area when expressing anal gland.

Ear Care

The environment created by the shape of a dog’s ear canal (long narrow L-shape) and poor ventilation contribute largely to the occurrence and re-occurrence of ear infections. Maintaining a clean ear is basic to preventing and assisting in the treatment of otitis.

Hair in the ears and pendulous ears that obstruct the opening of the ear canal help to create a warm moist dark environment. Which is exactly the scenario used in laboratory to culture yeast and bacteria. This then becomes the best breeding ground for an infection.

Not every dirty ears should be cleaned by groomer or pet owner. Some severely involved ears are painful and the canals may be ulcerated. Cleaning such ears may create undue discomfort to the pets. 

If a pus like discharge or fetid odor is present, clean only the ear flap and around the opening of the ear. This requires veterinary attention.

Dog with heavy amounts of oil and wax should have the ears clean often to minimize build up. Excess wax and oil, combined with dead and dying cells creates an excellent medium for bacteria and yeast to grow. Removing it may prevent an ear infection.

Do check on your fur baby’s ears often and clean it after every shower.

P.S. picture shown is a bad ear infection that requires veterinary attention.

Ear Care Products


1. Espree Ear Care

We are using Espree Ear Care for all grooming fur babies. We like how it help cleaning dirty ears better and reduces odour caused by infection.

Note: Not suitable for cats

2. Biogroom Ear Powder

We’ve tried a few ear powder but we still like Biogroom Ear Powder the best. It gives us better grip to remove hair from ear canals in dogs. With better grip, it reduces pain, stress and gives a better experience to fur babies during ear cleaning.

Note: not all breeds require removing hair from ear canals. Consult your veterinarians or groomers before attempting to do it yourself

3. Bark 2 Basic Ear Cleaner

Alcohol-free. Antimicrobial Witch Hazel cleaner in a gentle aloe vera and chamomile extract base. Breaks through tough wax and debris while drying and deodorizing the ear area.

Note: Not suitable for cats

4. Tropiclean Ear Wash

We are using this for our personal fur babies and cats that we’ve been grooming.

It’s alcohol-free. As our fur babies have recurring ear issues due to allergies, we realised Tropiclean Ear Wash helped recovering better as well as reduces odour. It also helped soothe any irritation that may be caused by infections.

5. Facial Cotton

You may purchase this from any Watson, Unity or Guardian stores.

What’s ear cleaning without the cotton right?

6. Ear Forceps

We use this when we remove hair from ear canals as well as using it to hold the facial cotton when cleaning the ears.

We find that using ear forceps with cotton gives a sturdier feel than using cotton buds.

How To Clean Your Fur Baby’s Ears

To purchase products shown here, PM or WhatsApp us at (+65) 9758 3568 to order.

Dental Care

Dental Disease

Oral disease is the most frequently diagnosed health issue for dogs over 2 1/2 to 3 years of age. Over 80% will suffer from this preventable problem.

Plaque – Bacteria and proteins from saliva stick to the tooth and form plaque which constantly coats the teeth. 

It is soft, off-white in colour and can be easily wiped or brushed from tooth surface.

Tartar – Within 48-72 hours, calcium salts are deposited in this plaque film and turned into tartar.

It is a hard yellow-brown crust that cannot be wiped or brushed off. It must be carefully scrap off.

Tartar advances under the gum line and starts a prices called periodontal disease.

Periodontal Disease
Can cause thickening of gums, receding gums, loss of bone from the socket of the tooth, weakening of ligaments holding tooth in the socket. It also results in bad breath, discomfort, infection and eventual loss of tooth.

Signs of Periodontal Disease
* Halitosis
* Discoloration caused by tartar
* Difficulty in chewing or swallowing
* Drooling
* Rapid jaw or tongue movements
* Loose teeth
* Loss of teeth
* Bleeding of the gum
* Thickening of gums
* Nasal discharge

What you can do:
* Brush your fur baby’s teeth often. Preferably once a day.
* Schedule a dental check with your vet. If there’s a need, do a dental scaling.

Dental Products

1. Virbac CET Toothpaste
Comes in malt, poultry & vanilla mint.
We personally love the vanilla mint for a fresher breath on our fur babies.
It does not have any foaming agents and it’s safe to consume. Contains dual enzyme system to inhibit forming of plaque.
Suitable for both dog and cat.

2. Toothbrush
What’s toothpaste without a toothbrush? They come as a pair.
We prefer soft bristles toothbrush for the gentleness towards the gums.
Using the right size toothbrush plays a part too. Regular brushing helps reduce plaque and tartar.

3. Alma Crystal
One of our recent favourite for daily use, twice a day. Alma Crystal is gel form of Alma Water. Shake it well and watch the gel turn into water! It have antibacterial properties that kills any harmful dental bacteria which reduces plaque and tartar. The best part of this product, it reduces bad breath.

With consistent use, you’ll notice the tartar fall off easily. We’re speaking from experience. Tried & tested.

Can be used daily.

4. Alma Diamond
It consists of Alma Crystal & natural fossilised coral powder. Alma Crystal helps loosen the tartar while the fossilised coral powder gives the whitening effect and help mend the tooth surface.

Recommended to be use once every 2-3 days.

Product Usage

To purchase products shown here, PM or WhatsApp us at (+65) 9758 3568 to order.

Concentrated Shampoo vs Diluted Shampoo

The Frequently Asked Question

Why do you dilute the shampoo? Is it necessary? Is diluted shampoo easy to use compared to concentrated ones?

We have been diluting shampoo since our groomer starts attending grooming lessons. And owners have been asking about diluting the shampoo and what’s the ratio. And we decided to write this entry to share our own experience about diluting your fur baby’s shampoo.

Concentrated Shampoo

When we mentioned concentrated shampoo, we meant using the shampoo out from the bottle directly onto your pet. This has always been the way most pet owners shower their fur babies. However, not many know that concentrated shampoo may be harsh on their pet’s delicate skin.

Diluted Shampoo

By diluting your pet’s shampoo, it is mild enough to come in contact with your pet’s skin. Cats and dogs have a thinner skin compared to us humans. Thus, the sensitivity of the skin is much higher. With harsh chemicals or ingredients, it may trigger rashes or allergy reaction. Diluting shampoo reduces all of these risks.

If your pet is on medicated shampoo, we advise you to dilute the shampoo as the ingredient used can be a little harsh on their skin. Which may cause your pet’s skin to dry out instead of moisturizing. P.S. It all depends on the individual, not all pet reacts the same way.

Diluted shampoo also helps you use less yet able to give your pet a nice lather which cleans the skin thoroughly. In a way, you save your shampoo by a lot.

How To Dilute Your Pet’s Shampoo

Things to prepare:

  • mixing bottle or a pail (depending on which you prefer)
  • your pet’s shampoo
  • water
  • marbles (if you’re using mixing bottle. 2 pieces will be enough.)

Step 1: Place the marbles in the mixing bottle, add water and shampoo. Roughly around 1:10 ratio. If you’re using a pail, add the shampoo in it then water. Usually, the gushing of the water helps to mix and dilute the shampoo.

Step 2: If you’re using mixing bottle, shake well. The marbles will help with the mixing.

Step 3: After you’ve soaked your pet’s coat, use the diluted shampoo to lather its coat. Rinse well after lather and dry your pet.

How To Clean Your Pet’s Ears

Anatomy of Pet’s Ears

Canine Ear AnatomyPhoto Source: Miles & Emma

Before cleaning your pet’s ear, it is best to understand the anatomy. This is to prevent going too deep while cleaning and hurting your pet’s ear. Above is the illustration of a canine ear. Unlike our ears, their ear’s anatomy is in the form of an L shape. Thus, extra care is needed when cleaning their ears.

Things to prepare:

  • Cleaning solution
  • Ear powder (for dogs that requires inner ear fur removal)
  • Ear Forceps
  • Cotton
  • Treats (for rewarding your pet after ear cleaning)

Inner Ear Fur

Not all breeds require inner ear fur removal. Although there are some groomers who might refuse to pluck out the inner ear fur, the majority still does. Dogs with droopy ears, such as poodle and schnauzer, are prone to hair buildup in the ear canal. This can prevent airflow and trap moisture, leading to an increased growth of bacteria or fungi. These cause irritations and infections to occur.

Removing the inner ear fur can be painful if done wrong and may cause a traumatic experience for your pet. If you’re afraid or unsure how to handle your pet for this procedure, we would advise you to leave it to the professionals.

Steps to inner ear fur removal:

  1. Get you and your pet in a comfortable position. Make sure the area you’re at are well lit and not too dark.
  2. Pour a considerable amount of ear powder into your pet’s ear canal.
  3. Using either your finger or ear forceps, slowly remove the inner ear fur bit by bit in a pulling or plucking manner. Do not pull out a whole chunk as this may cause your pet’s ears to be in pain and inflamed.
  4. Repeat for the other ear. Reward your pet for being cooperative. This is to encourage them as well as giving them a good experience towards this procedure.

If you are unsure if your pet requires removing of the inner ear fur, feel free to consult us.

*Cats do not require any removal of inner ear fur.

Cleaning Your Pet’s Ear

Before purchasing ear cleaning solution, do check on the ingredients and labels. Not all ear cleaning solutions are suitable for cats. Most solutions contain alcohol, which some dogs are allergic or sensitive to.

If your pet has an ear infection, it is best to use the prescribed medicated solution or consult your veterinarian if you’re unsure.

Steps to ear cleaning:

  1. Get both you and your pet into a comfortable position. Make sure the area you’re in is well lit and not too dark.
  2. Pour ear solution in your pet’s ear canal and gently massage the base of the ear. Your dog may want to shake its head, allow it to as a good shake will help loosen the debris inside.
  3. Using the forceps, secure a piece of cotton and wrap the tip. Gently wipe the area that you could see. Do not go too deep as you might hurt your pet’s ear. If you’re afraid of cleaning the inner area, leave it to your groomer and just clean the outer part.
  4. Reapply ear solution on cotton if needed. Stop when the cotton comes out clean.
  5. Repeat for the other ear. Reward your pet for being cooperative. This is to encourage them as well as giving them a good experience towards this procedure.

Do note that ear infection might cause discomfort and pain to your pet. Clean gently and if you are unable to do so, get help from your veterinarian or you may contact us.

How Often Should You Clean Your Pet’s Ears?

If your pet doesn’t have any ear issues such as inflammation or infection, cleaning it once every two weeks should be fine. However, it is best to check regularly. Make sure your pet’s ears are dry after a shower as trapped moisture may cause bacteria growth which may result in infection.

We would recommend a weekly cleaning after a shower if your pet gets ear problems easily. This regular routine also gives you the chance to check on the ears. At least you will know if a visit to the vet is required.

Getting Your Pet To Enjoy Ear Cleaning

Cleaning your pet’s ears should be a positive experience. Unless they had a traumatic experience at the groomer or you might have hurt them when trying to do it yourself. Signing up for a basic grooming course for owners may help you do it the right way. Sometimes infections might be the cause of them being afraid of someone touching their ears. It is possible to get them to enjoy ear cleaning again, but it takes time and effort to gain back their trust.

Gently touching your pet’s ears during interaction allows them to know that it is OK. Frequently touch their ears may help to prepare them for ear cleaning. Rewarding them if they show positive behaviour when you touch their ears may help. Do it on a regular basis and they will learn that it is OK for their ears to be touched. It takes time to gain their trust. So don’t give up if your pet requires a longer time.

To schedule for an appointment for ear cleaning, leave us a text at (+65) 9758 3568.

How To Trim Your Pet’s Nails

Trim Your Pet’s Nails Regularly

Many owners might not have their pet’s nails trimmed regularly. Like our nails, their nails grow too and that includes the quick (veins) as well. With long untrimmed nails, your pet might have difficulty when it walks. The grip when they walk will be decreased causing them to slip most of the time. When the nails are too long, it might cause them to be in pain too when they walk.

Trimming their nails regularly reduces all of the above problems. And it can keep the quick at a preferable length. It also can reduce the chances of their nails destroying your leather furniture or giving you a painful scratch.

Tools You Need For Nail Trimming

  • Nail clipper
  • Nail filer/grinder
  • Your pet’s favorite treats
  • Styptic powder or corn starch

How To Trim Your Pet’s Nails

Trimming nails can be a traumatic experience for your pet if they have been hurt before. It takes time to gain their trust in order for them to be comfortable and enjoy having their nails trimmed. Here’s our tip to get you and your pet comfortable and bond during the nail trimming session.

Step 1: Before trimming the nails, touch your pet’s paws regularly. Let them get used to their paws being touched. Reward them with treats if they show positive behavior.

Step 2: Introduce them the grooming tools. Although they are comfortable with you touching their paws, they might try to run away upon seeing the grooming tools. Let them sniff the tools and get familiar with them. If you are using a nail grinder, switch it on to familiarize them with the sound.  Touch their paws with it as well to allow them to feel the working mechanism of the nail grinder. Reward them with treats if they show positive behavior.

Step 3: Once they are ready, it is time to trim their nails. Would advise trimming the nails on the rear legs first. This is to reduce the tension and trauma. Do it nail by nail. If you are afraid of trimming more than you should, always start by trimming the tip of the nails. Trimming bit by bit till you’ve reached the maximum length you can cut. Use the nail file or grinder, file away the sharp edges of the nails till smooth and blunt. Reward them with treats if they show positive behavior.

Step 4: Repeat step 3 till all nails are trimmed.

Difference Between Black and White Nails

pet's nails

Many will know that there’s a blood vein hidden in each and every nail of our pets. It is visible if your pet has white nails which make nail trimming easy. Black nails can be tricky during trimming even to professional groomers.

When trimming black nails, we would advise you to trim bit by bit till you see a solid black dot in the middle. That is a sign where you shouldn’t trim any further. If you were to trim more than you should by accident, use the styptic powder or corn starch (paste like texture) to stop the bleeding. Apply pressure on the affected nails for about 5 seconds. Repeat if there is a need to till the bleeding stops.

For white nails, you are able to see the veins easily. Trim the white parts only. If you’re unsure, leave a little of the white area for filing to shorten it.

As you trim your pet’s nails regularly, the quick will slowly recede as there’s no room for it to grow longer. This would require regular nail trimming session in order to achieve shorter nails. With shorter nails, your pet will feel comfortable when they walk.

If you’re afraid to trim their nails, text us to schedule for a nail trimming session at (+65) 9758 3568.

Oral Hygiene: Brushing Your Pet’s Teeth

Many owners do not know the importance of maintaining their pet’s oral hygiene. The majority don’t brush their pet’s teeth at all during the pet’s entire life time. While some only had the teeth brushed only during their pet’s grooming session. Apparently, this isn’t enough to maintain proper oral care.

Tools To Aid Proper Oral Care

  • Pet toothpaste (do not use human’s toothpaste as it is not edible and the foams irritate your pet’s stomach)
  • Oral gel to wipe or brush the teeth
  • Pet toothbrush
  • Solutions to be applied to the tooth

How To Brush Your Pet’s Teeth

It is advisable to set a regular routine to have your pet’s teeth brushed. It would be good to have a daily routine, however, if your pet’s teeth seem healthy, three times a week is fine. Although many pets are reluctant to have their teeth brushed by struggling or attempting to snap, all of these can be trained.

Before you start brushing your pet’s teeth, prepare the things that you need.

  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste
  • Treats (rewards as positive training purpose)

Our aim and goal are all the same, and that is to allow your pets to enjoy brushing their teeth. We want them to see this regular routine as a way of enjoyment rather than a torture.

Step 1: Get both yourself and your pet into a comfortable position. Touch their muzzle gently. Let them get used to you touch their mouth area. Reward them with treats or praises if there’s positive response. Slowly move to opening the mouth and reward them for a positive response.

Step 2: Introduce them the toothbrush by letting them smell and get close to it. If they seem calm, reward them with the treats. Next, slowly insert the toothbrush gently into its mouth and gently brush (without toothpaste). Reward if positive behavior is shown. This step may take some time for your pet to get used to it. It is OK if it takes days or weeks, be patient as this may be a new experience for them.

Step 3: Once they’re OK with step 2, introduce them the toothpaste. It is OK to let them taste the toothpaste. Reward for good behavior.

Step 4: It’s time to start brushing their teeth with both the toothbrush and toothpaste together. Remember to do it often to prevent gum diseases, tartar, and plaque.

Importance of Regular Grooming

Pet Grooming

Importance of Regular Grooming

Having a regular grooming routine is important. It not only makes your pet presentable, it also allows them to feel good. It is also a way to maintain a proper skin and coat care for your pet. We would emphasize on a fix scheduled grooming session due to many reasons and we are going to share with you on this post.

Knots and Tangle Free

Simple brushing and combing can be done at home by owners themselves. Long coated breeds require regular brushing and combing in order to maintain the coat in tip top condition. Take some time out from your hectic schedule and give your pet the needed brushing and combing. Brushing and combing help removes any knots on your pet’s coat. A tangle and knot free fur allow your pet’s skin to breathe with ease.

Trimmed Nails

Untrimmed nails cause your pet to be in pain when they walk. In order to allow them to walk comfortably and pain-free, trim their nails regularly. If you’re unsure on how to trim or dare not to do it yourself, contact us and schedule a nail trimming session. It is advisable to do it at least once a month to maintain well-trimmed nails.

Physical Checks

Be it at home or with the groomer, regular grooming allows your pet to be physically checked. Any visible condition such as rashes, lumps or infections can be detected early before it gets worse.

It also allows you to spot any pests on your pet, such as fleas or ticks. And you are able to get it treated immediately with a medicated bath.

Express Anal Gland

Most owners do not know the importance of expressing the anal gland. Some pets may not be able to excrete out the glands neutrally and requires our help. An impacted and infected anal sac may cause a rupture that will leave a nasty wound after.

Check your pet’s anal sac and if you do not know how to empty it, always seek help from your vet or groomer.

Teeth Brushing

Many ignored this important oral hygiene. Like us, your pet needs its teeth brushed regularly.

Brushing and checking your pet’s teeth allows you to know if there’s anything wrong such as chip or decay. These may require a dental check at the vet.

Lessen The Misunderstanding and Miscommunication

Misunderstanding

We have had feedback from owners about their pet’s groom from their previous groomers. Miscommunication often lead to being misunderstood when owners describe verbally how they would want their pets groom. Often, we would advise owners what they could do to help make us understand what they want better. Misunderstanding usually is avoidable but of course, we could lessen it.

Here’s our tip to help us understand one another better.

Pictures Paint A Thousand Words

Like the style from the previous grooming session or one, you came across online, save it on your mobile phone and show it to us. With a picture on hand, it will be easier for us to know what you have in mind. From there, we are able to advise you further about the style and your pet’s coat condition.

Discuss With Your Groomer

Unsure of how you want to have your pet groom, you can discuss with us and we will gladly share with you our opinion. We were asked what we would recommend most of the time. Each dog varies in style due to coat texture and breeds.

Let The Creativity Flow

We do have occasions where owners have no idea how they would want their pet to be groomed. Choosing this option requires faith in the groomer and a brave owner. Letting us choose a style that we think might suit your pet is the other option. But of course, owners have to be prepared for the outcome as you may or may not like the style.

Always Be The One Around

We provide house-call grooming and often time, the owners aren’t home. Usually, it’s always the helper or family members who have no clues about the groom. Thus, we would encourage owners to always be home. This is to avoid miscommunication and time wasted while waiting for the owner’s reply via call or a text.