Grooming and care
The Eurasier is a double-coated breed and while it may seem intimidating, their coats are actually fairly low maintenance, however, regular upkeep is important to prevent larger issues from piling up. And be warned, Eurasiers shed. A lot. The volume can vary based on time of year but invest in a good vacuum (or three) and mentally prepare yourself to find fur in all sorts of places. Regular grooming can reduce the amount of loose fur shed.
When a dog is doable-coated, it means that the dog has coarse guard hair on top which protects the dog from the sun and rain and a light fluffy down underneath that insulates the dog. The coarse guard hair does a terrific job of keeping a dog dry underneath, so even when they’ve been rolling around and playing in the mud, once the mud dries, it’s easy to brush out the dirt. A double-coated dog should NEVER be shaved, as the undercoat traps warm air in the winter to keep its body warm, and traps cool air in the summer to regulate body temperature.
Desensitization and counter-conditioning
Over the lifetime of your Eurasier, you’ll need to spend a lot of time grooming your dog (or your groomer will). Early desensitization to a brush, rake or comb, and nail clippers or a Dremel while your puppy is young will go a long way in making it easy to groom them in the future. Handle their feet often, tap them with nail clippers, turn on the Dremel, daily 5-10 seconds of brushing and gently blow them with a dryer. These early investments will pay off.
Standard grooming schedule
This schedule is a typical representation of what works for us with an intact female. Spayed and neutered dogs may experience a "spay coat" which is often a thicker coat with coarser hair that sheds year-round, instead of a standard 2x/year coat blow.
Weekly: 2 x 30min line-combing sessions + 2 x nail clipping sessions
Every 2-4 weeks: Trim paw fur
Every 2-3 months: Full bath + blow dry (may be more frequent if showing, in heat, etc.)
A technique called line-combing is helpful to use when combing a double-coated dog to ensure that you go down to the skin to remove all the loose fur. This is a good video that explains what line-combing is.
- Chris Christiansen 000 Greyhound comb
- Plush Puppy OMG Grooming Spray
Most Eurasiers have black nails, which makes it scary and difficult to see where the quick is. The "Nail Maintenance for Dogs" Facebook group has a lot of great resources to show you how to trim and identify the quick in black nails.
Puppies' nails can be trimmed using a human nail clipper, but it is helpful to have adult pet nail clippers on hand to work on desensitization. Other options for nail maintenance include a Dremel or a scratch board.
- Miller Forge Stainless Steel clippers (red handle, model #743)
- Dremel 8050
The only area where it is acceptable to trim a Eurasier is around the paw pads. If the paw fur is too long, it could impede the paw pad's ability to grip surfaces well. Use a small trimmer to shave the fur underneath and in between the pads.
- Wahl Mini Arco trimmer
Generally, Eurasiers don't require frequent bathing as their fur naturally repels dirt and water. We tend to bathe ours approximately every 2-3 months because they smell so nice after their bath! It's also important to desensitize them to the water and the dryer early on to make the bathing experience less traumatic as there are some Eurasiers who dislike the water.
- Still looking for the perfecto shampoo + conditioner combo!
- If your dog has cream/lighter fur, a whitening shampoo can be helpful
- A force dryer is very helpful to have as a typical hair dryer may not be strong enough to get through the double coat and/or may get too hot for their skin
It's important to keep a dog's teeth clean. Dogs are experts at hiding their pain, so if they had a cracked tooth or an abscess, it may not be discovered for years, at which point, extraction is typically the only option.
The best way to keep a dog's teeth clean is by daily brushing. Condition your dog to be comfortable with you touching their mouths from a young age, and incorporate a brushing routine before bedtime each night.
Some may say that chewing kibble will naturally scrape plaque off their teeth, however, as most kibbles are carbohydrate-based and carbs are sugars, it's not an effective strategy.
Another way to keep teeth clean is by giving your dog chews regularly. Not only do chews help keep teeth clean, but it's also mentally relaxing for a dog. There are a variety of options for chews - here are a couple options to consider:
- Raw meaty bones (things like poultry legs, feet, necks, wings, frames and heads as well as rabbit chunks and heads): This option is likely the most effective (and delicious!) for dogs, however, not everyone may have the means to store raw bones for dogs, and it can get messy.
- Bully sticks (single-ingredient, easily-digestible chew treat made from beef muscle): These are great because they will not splinter and are digestible, however, they can be smelly and expensive. Supervise your dog when giving them a bully stick to ensure that they don't swallow the end whole.
- Dental sticks: If going this route, look at the packaging or this list produced by the Veterinary Oral Health Council to see if they are VOHC-approved. In order to qualify as an approved product, the VOHC requires companies to perform a trial with a control group to to confirm that their products are effective at slowing down the growth of plaque and tartar.
Never give your dog rawhide or cooked bones, as rawhide is not digestible and cooked bones may splinter and pierce their intestines.