With the power of a mastiff, the working ability of a bloodhound, and the tenacity of a bulldog, the Fila Brasileiro is a breed that requires an owner as formidable as it is. This versatile breed can track, herd and control livestock, and hold large game at bay with its immense power. Filas are also often used as guard dogs due to their incredible loyalty to their family and suspicion of strangers. It is highly recommended that most grooming is done by the owner of the Fila or someone close to the dog because of this natural distrust of strangers. Luckily, the Fila Brasileiro is a smooth coated breed making grooming a breeze.
Tend To The Ears
For in between bath grooming sessions there are a couple of areas that require special attention on the dog. First and foremost the ears of Fila should be thoroughly cleaned. Those long, pendulous ears are wonderful to aid in tracking game but are also known to trap moisture, dirt, and debris inside the ear. A damp, environment with very little airflow makes a perfect breeding ground for a yeast or bacterial infection. To properly clean the ears, choose a liquid ear cleaning solution approved for canine use. Place several drops into the dog’s ear canal. It is very important that you do not place the nozzle into the dog’s ear as this could cause painful and permanent damage to the ear. Next, massage the drops down into the canal by rubbing the base of your Fila’s ears until a “squishing” sound can be heard. Allow the dog to shake its head now. Take several cotton balls and remove excess wax and moisture on the outside of the ear. Once the ear is clean and dry, repeat the same process on the other side.
The other big concern when grooming the Fila Brasiliero is their wrinkles. All prominent wrinkles need to be meticulously cleaned. Lack of care will cause these crevasses to produce a foul odor and can lead to skin problems. To wash the wrinkles, first take a fresh washcloth and wipe the area. Apply a mild, dog-safe shampoo to vicinity. Swab clean with a new washcloth, making sure no soap residue is left behind. Then with a clean towel dry the area gently but thoroughly. To ensure that there is no moisture left behind for bacteria or fungus to grow, apply a small amount of talcum powder to the wrinkle.
Finally, it is time to pull out the curry brush and give your Fila a good brush down. Move the curry in short, quick strokes across the coat to draw out any lose hair or dirt. Then a quick brush over with a boar bristle brush to distribute oils throughout the coat and your Fila’s maintenance grooming session is over! He should be looking good and ready to face any challenge!