How to Groom a Sussex Spaniel

Sussex Spaniels are very unusual, and are a threatened breed. They are wonderful family pets, but like all dogs, will need grooming from time to time. Read on to find out how!


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    Know that they will require grooming. Like all dogs, Sussex Spaniels love their walks and playing in leaves and grass, which can get caught in their coats. Remove any foreign objects, such as burrs, leaves and twigs from your spaniels coat before you start brushing. This is important as these can get tangled in the fur or break into smaller bits, making it hard to get out of your dog's coat.
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    Get a slicker brush and brush in the direction of the grain of the dogs coat gently to get rid of tangles. Do not brush your dog's head or ears yet.
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    Go over your dog with a bristle brush. If you find any matting, gently brush it out or gently massage baby oil and brushing on the matted area. Carefully brush the hair on your dog's head, face and ears.
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    Moisten a cotton wool ball with mineral or olive oil and gently wipe the inside of the dog's ear. Repeat on a fresh cotton ball in the other ear.
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    Using a dog clipper, clip your spaniel's coat. Starting at your dogs shoulder, slowly progress to its tail, leaving about 1.5 cm (half an inch) of fur to protect your dog from the elements. Use a trimmer or baby scissors to clip the tail, legs, paws, chest and sanitary areas and the eyes and ears. It is a good idea to have someone the dog knows and trusts to hold the dog whilst clipping and trimming the dog for you and the dog's safety.
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    (Optional) Clean your dog's teeth. You should clean your dog's teeth around once a week and should have chews to help stop tartar building up on your dog's teeth. Get a special toothbrush for dogs and put on a pea-sized blob of dog toothpaste (or make your own organic dog toothpaste). Gently clean your dog's teeth.
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    You now have a very smart looking spaniel!


  • You don't have to do all of the steps above. For example, you can leave out cleaning the teeth and clipping and get it done at the vets or at a dog groomer.
  • Always use high quality brushes, clippers, trimmers/scissors when grooming your spaniel, as poor-quality grooming tools could break, injure your pet or yourself or give a poor finish when you're done.
  • If you want to make brushing and clipping your Sussex spaniel easier, you can give him/her a bath before you start grooming.
  • You can clip your dogs nails when you are grooming, but it isn't compulsory.
  • You can use these instructions for grooming other kinds of spaniel!


  • Never use cotton buds when cleaning a dog's ear. If the dog jerks whilst you are cleaning its ear, you could seriously damage the ear canal with the cotton bud.
  • If your dog has never been clipped before, be gentle and get someone to hold it and speak calmly to it, so they can restrain it if it tries to snap at you. If this keeps happening, take your dog to a professional dog groomer.
  • If your dog has never had his teeth brushed, slowly introduce him to the brush and get a toothpaste flavoured like his favourite food, like chicken flavoured paste. When brushing your dog's teeth, make no sudden movements and be gentle, or your spaniel will try to snap at you.
  • If you don't want to clean your dog's teeth yourself, you can take him to a vet, who can clean them. Do not just give him chews as a substitute to cleaning your dog's teeth, as these won't fully clean his teeth. This can lead to a build up of tartar and plaque in your dog's mouth and other dental problems.
  • Be very careful when brushing around your dog's eyes; you could poke him with the brush.

Things You'll Need

  • Sussex Spaniel
  • Slicker brush
  • Bristle brush
  • Clipper (optional)
  • Trimmer/scissors (optional)
  • A Dog Toothbrush and Toothpaste (optional)

Article Info

Categories: Dog Grooming