When grooming small animals it is usually easiest to work with them when they are up on a grooming table. This eliminates many of the bending as well as clumsiness associated with trying to hold onto the animal while working on it at the same time. Since brushing, grazing and mowing small animals usually require two hands, a grooming board also has a solid grooming arm that is used to hold the pet in place while it is being worked on.
In most cases, a grooming arm is made of solid metal that is shaped like an up-down letter “L.” The right part of the arm either fits through a hole in the grooming table or clamps on the side of it, depending on the table and arm styles. The height of the care arm can be adjusted by loosening the clamp, pushing the arm up or down and then tightening the clamp again. This allows the height of the arm to be suitable for the size of the animal being groomed.
When grooming very large dogs like Newfoundlands and the Great Pyrenees, the grooming table is typically over-sized but on very short legs. This makes it easier for the dog to get on and off the table. The grooming arm that goes with a giant breed grooming table should be very sturdy so that it will not bend if the dog pulls towards it. Such weapons are also extra long, so they can be raised high enough to serve very large dogs.
At the end of the care arm parallel to the table is a collar that holds the pet in place while being brushed, trimmed or dried. For animals that are used to being cared for, this is usually just a simple nylon loop that slides over the animal’s head to discourage the animal from jumping off the table. Some grooming arms are designed so that the top line folds out of the way, making it easier to work with animals that are comfortable being groomed and do not require to be held.
For animals resistant to the process of grooming, the care arm can also be used with a double loop. This attachment has a loop that goes around the animal’s neck and another around it in the middle, making it harder for it to get away. Smaller dogs and cats can also be placed in slings attached to the grooming arm that support the animal’s entire body, allowing the dog hairdresser to work on one section at a time.