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A Groomer’s Guide to Purebred Dogs



Jennifer Bishop-Jenkins

This fast-paced overview of the world of dogs will provide context, back story, and organizational models for groomers to better understand what we see every day in our canine clients. Recent scientific studies have revolutionized our understanding of dogs and their history as they have developed into the groups and breeds, the coat types, the anatomy, the amazing abilities, and the engaging behaviors of dogs that we see today. By the end of the day every groomer will have a deep understanding of, and powerful evidence for, the importance of the grooming profession.

Hour 1) Human/Dog Co-Evolution

Both Nature and Nurture combined to create the closest relationship of any two species on this planet – the unprecedented relationship between Humans and Dogs. Find out what we learned about breeds of dogs when the canine genome was fully mapped. What is a “purebred” dog and how does the recent fad of designer crossbreeds fit in to the bigger picture? What do most dogs actually look like and live like worldwide? Learn where dogs in all their vast variety of breeds came from and how their evolution and domestication may have been responsible for the very survival of humanity.

Hour 2) Groups, Breeds, and Coat Types

Why are dog breeds “grouped” into certain common functions, abilities, and even coat types? How does the origin of the seven Groups help us better understand their grooming needs? What are the common dog coat types and how should each be groomed correctly? Why was each coat type created? This session will name and categorize over 200 breeds, and also help groomers learn about what dog shows are, how they can be accessed, and how groomers can benefit from them in their local areas.

Hour 3) Grooming the Coat Types

What tools, equipment, and grooming procedures are right and wrong for each type of coat? What differences exist between “pet” and “show” grooming for each of the coat types? This hour will systematically lay out correct grooming procedures based on the science about each coat type. Groomers will learn the proper care of the most common and natural dog coat of all – the Double Coat!

Hour 4) Grooming Working and Herding Group Dogs

How did Working and Herding Group dogs contribute to the development of modern human economic systems? Herding Group dogs are the agricultural specialists that broke off from the Working Group in 1983 and are among the smartest non-humans on earth. Their grooms are diverse, far beyond their “Bath/Brush” only stereotype. This session will cover breed by breed the specific grooming needs of each of the breeds and the coat types in these two groups. We will end the day reflecting on all we learned about the importance of the grooming profession.