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Can someone explain carding

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  • Can someone explain carding

    I feel out of the loop. This is something I was never taught to do by ANYONE. I can rely on you wonderful people, I know you are a world of knowledge. Can you explain step by step, how to do it. why you do it. also, what breeds you would use it on. Thank you so much!!!

  • #2
    Carding at its most basic is using a blunt-edged tool to pull dead coat, especially undercoat. I use old, dull #40 blades, shedding blades, stripping knives, lava rock, pumice stones, I seem to have a tool for every coat texture. 'dull' tools help prevent cutting the hairs, so you're primarily just dragging out the fuzzy stuff.I usually use one hand to ruffle the coat up a bit against the growth pattern and to hold the skin taut against the body, then line-brush in a dragging motion with the growth, just a few strokes in any one place. I'll go over the dog, comb the coat into place and go back to any "high" or thick spots. On spaniels it helps to get the body coat to snug right up tight to the body contours. On clipped terriers it helps to remove the excessive undercoat and retain some of the correct hard texture and rich color. On clipped double-coats and clipped cats it helps to remove clipper track-marks and get an overall smoother finish.

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    • #3
      My skimpy knowledge of carding

      I am answering because I happen to be going in late this morning and see that no one has replied yet. Someone will later, I'm sure, but here is what little I have gleaned.

      Carding is what is done to remove secondary coat ("undercoat", but not like in the heavy double-coated breeds). It is what a Furminator or Laube deshed tool does, but other tools used to be used (like the removable portion of a #40 blade????).

      For groomers, it is handy to do it on certain dogs that you clip like some Cairns, Westies, etc. It will remove some of the "fuzzy" coat and get a coat that has a better "lay" when you clip. I would figure that handstripping removes this coat anyway, but when you clip, it is not removed unless you card/Furminate/whatever.

      Before Furminator, I used to pull out some of the soft Cairn/Westie fuzz with a teensy, fine "face" comb, but a carding tool or Furminator does a much better, quicker job.

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      • #4
        In my thinking

        carding can be getting out dead coat, or using like a Mars Coat King that actually cuts of some of the hairs. I can coat king a Cairn with some thinner help to look pretty darn close to a hand strip but much much faster.
        Money will buy you a pretty good dog but it won't buy the wag of it's tail.

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        • #5
          I like to hand strip coats on terriers, and as far as I've learned, rolling is just a normal removal of the loose hairs and generally neatening up, carding is a little more in depth requiring a stripping knife or a furminator and you pull out more of the dead hair leaving the dog's coat looking more 'stacked' it's supposed to have 3 levels of growth. I don't like to use a coat king or anyting that wil cut the dogs hairs, although I've seen people use a razor (like a hairdressers razor) to smooth out fluffies after stripping. Sometimes I'll use a thinning shear to neaten up hocks and around the flank area.

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          • #6
            Carding is pretty simple, at least that is why this technique was developed; to simplify coat maintenance and to polish your pet trims and keep the skin healthy and the coat in nice color & texture. It is removing as much of the dead undercoat and dead guard coat as possible in the fastest and usually the more tender manner of maintaining a wiry coat on many breeds. You can use your knives, your dull #40 blade, or you fingers. You can use a Furminator,, but I personally do not like those things. Most times I use my knives and a coat king or coat rake, and my fingers. I do this on almost EVERY breed that comes thru my salon. I even use coat kings gingerly on my curly coated breeds to be sure I've gotten all the dead and loose hair out before the pet leaves. It has proven to make my job easier and for less tangling at the pet's next visit. You can do what is called by Jodi Murphy as a "Pet Strip", where you use these tools mentioned above, and your fingers, and lightly pull thru the coat to get the dead out, and to remove "upsweeps" of hair and help maintain the coat. This is all designed to take less time than an actual handstrip, plus--it helps maintain the coats of those client dogs who will not come in regularly for their rolling and stripping programs. The best and most beneficial reason to card is to help clear up skin issues and remove dead hair that clogs follicles. When hair is clippered, it is lighter in weight, so it is encouraged to recede back into the hair follicle and can cause things like occlusions and cottony soft, lackluster coat and light or dull color. Also, clippering for some breeds, and for some certain dogs, can cause skin problems to worsen, so thorough carding pulls out all of the dead hair and exfoliates the skin, stimulates the production of natural oil excretion and skin sloughing & replacement on a cellular level.
            Basically, what I do is to clipper in the dog if needed, and then go over the entire dog per its breed standard trim and address the jacket and furnishings as needed. When using a knife, it must be DULL as with stripping. You use it as you would for stripping except that you are not grasping the hair between the knife & your , you are just pulling the knife in short strokes, wrist taught (movement from the shoulder or elbow only) with the hair growth and pulling out the soft and dead hair. If you see hair in the knife that has been cut or broken off, your knife is either sharp or you may be rotating your wrist. Another reason to card is to also blend either areas that are handstripped or clippered, into those areas that are thinner scissored to create a smooth flow or definition, or to remove clipper marks.
            For instance,,on a Cocker I will clip in their jacket as needed, almost always with a skip tooth blade of desired length, and then heavily card their neck, shoulders & jacket area & their rump to blend the coat nicely and to make it look "natural". With my Terriers, I will do the same thing, but I will lightly strip out their furnishings as needed as well and spend a lot of time carding them to create a tighter and natural look, this keeps their coat texture up and the color nice.
            So again, carding is basically a "cliff notes" version of hand stripping,,designed to maintain pet trims, also to help blend areas of handstripping & thinner scissoring, and help keep skin & coat healthy.
            Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the fiber of a free people. A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough. ~Franklin D. Roosevelt
            www.ChrisSertzel.com

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            • #7
              Thanks!

              I'm a new member here, and pretty new to grooming as well. I have owned cocker spaniels for about 21 years, and learned the basics of cocker grooming from the breeder I bought my first cocker from. Over the years, I've learned ways of fine-tuning my cockers' cuts, but mostly from trial & error. Evidently, what I had tried to do with my most recent grooms on my cockers would be carding, though I did not do it correctly as it failed to get some of the clipper lines smoothed out, and as Windy mentioned it should not cut or break the hairs...but I managed to do a lot of this, lol. I used a fine blade hand stripper and tried different strokes and angles to try to figure out what worked best. They did look better, my cockers, but one of my babies is getting up there in years and has many bumps and lumps, and I'm finding it increasingly more difficult to get him smooth.

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              • #8
                An additional note here, I prefer to card with the stripping knife flat, hold the skin, pull it through the coat so it doesn't catch guard hairs, just the undercoat. I saw some people this past weekend carding with the stripping knife upright, maybe it works for them, but as for getting undercoat out I think it works best flat.

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                • #9
                  I've head that you are supposed to hold it at a 45 degree angle when carding.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by pup n sudz View Post
                    I've head that you are supposed to hold it at a 45 degree angle when carding.
                    I would agree with you on this in most cases. The new Greyhound Carding knives set the angle themselves because of how they are made. It looks to be about a 45 degree angle. these knives are amazing for undercoat removal and working cocker coats fast and easily.
                    <a href="http://www.groomwise.typepad.com/grooming_smarter" target="_blank">My Blog</a> The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why. –Mark Twain

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                    • #11
                      Most of the time carding should be done at an oblique angle to the skin and coat-15* or so works best for me on most coats. Be sure to stretch the skin taut to prevent injury and irritiation. The trick is making sure that your tool is dulldulldull or it WILL cut the coat and leave you with a mess. I have dulled so many tools for carding *lol* You can run them through cardboard for a while until they're dull or you can put a pinch of Quik-Stop in a baggie with your knife and let it sit for a week and knock off the rust. You can also scrub the edge against concrete. I prefer the Quik-Stop menthod for a week and then cardboard to clean the blade up but there are any number of ways to dull your stripping knife to use it for carding. And, like Kifaru, I have a drawer full of tools that I use for carding on a variety of coat types.

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                      • #12
                        Carding is what is done to remove secondary coat ("undercoat", but not like in the heavy double-coated breeds). It is what a Furminator or Laube deshed tool does, but other tools used to be used (like the removable portion of a #40 blade????).

                        For groomers, it is handy to do it on certain dogs that you clip like some Cairns, Westies, etc. It will remove some of the "fuzzy" coat and get a coat that has a better "lay" when you clip. I would figure that handstripping removes this coat anyway, but when you clip, it is not removed unless you card/Furminate/whatever.

                        Before Furminator, I used to pull out some of the soft Cairn/Westie fuzz with a teensy, fine "face" comb, but a carding tool or Furminator does a much better, quicker job.[/QUOTE]
                        Using a furminator or furminator like tool to card, yikes! I am a newb so maybe I am incorrect, but I shudder at the thought of using these on a hand strippable (i think I just made that word up) breed I have an Irish Terrier and I have been told never to use a furminator tool on him because it will break his coat like clipping does. I would suggest not using this and if I am incorrect please tell me so, but my dogs coat is awsome (its really easy to strip) and I would have to be really convinced otherwise.

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