There are many times when a dog needs a quick touch-up on his face and around his eyes. Listed below are some tips to help:

Use a soft, clean washcloth or sponge

Moisten the cloth or sponge with room-temperature water (avoid extremes of temperature). Use just enough water to get the job done. If you oversaturate the cloth or sponge, your dog will feel soggy and may balk at having his face cleaned. You want your dog to feel as comfortable as possible.

Avoid using paper towels or napkins

When wet, these products can easily shred and disintegrate, which will leave small bits of paper in your dog’s coat when wiping. The idea is to make your dog cleaner than he was before you started.

Pre-moistened wipes

Some people use pre-moistened wipes because of their convenience. However, you need to make sure the ingredients in the solution does not irritate your dog. This is especially true if the wipe is made for human, not canine use. If you want to use a pre-moistened wipe, make sure you stick to products that are specifically made for dogs.

Be gentle but firm

Use only as much force as necessary to soften and dislodge bits of food or dirt in your dog’s facial fur. It’s better to make several soft strokes than one or two more forceful—and intimidating—swipes. If a clump is proving especially stubborn, use a little more water to moisten it. And if your pet is especially sensitive, try a soft cotton ball soaked in warm water.