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Westie with soft coat

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  • Westie with soft coat

    Hello!
    Yesterday, I had a 10 months old westie, with an horrible soft coat his owner wants a handstrip. But the dog really had mats on his back with a lot of soft undercoat, he had almost nothing of hard hairs. All i've done is take off the mats and the soft undercoat.
    The fact is that he already went to groomer once, when he was 6 months old and she cut his back with thinner or blender shears... I think he hadn't the hair to handstrip at 6 months yet. Plus he starts to get skin issues.
    His owner wants asbolutely handstrip him because she doesn't want to her dog to get bichon hair, I mean he ALREADY has bichon hair!
    What can I do for the next time ? If I take off the undercoat (he absolutely has too much) will the hard hairs grow ?

  • #2
    you will have to strip it out either by carding or using a coat king. You may never get a nice hard coat. Those soft coated ones are hard to pull as its mostly undercoat.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by kat05 View Post
      you will have to strip it out either by carding or using a coat king. You may never get a nice hard coat. Those soft coated ones are hard to pull as its mostly undercoat.
      This. Just because the owner wants the dog hand stripped, doesn't mean you HAVE to do it. If the hair is that soft already, stripping it is not likely to help much. I have found most westies have a nice harsh coat, even through multiple clippings, at least for a couple of years. The ones that start out that soft aren't good candidates for handstripping, these often don't look like well bred westies either-too big, legs too long, body too skinny, not breed standard in other ways as well. Take it from me, be very selective with your hand strip clients and you will be much happier. I continued to hands trip dogs with improper coat and terrible temperaments and it completely burnt me out on hand strip for clients ever again.
      I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free.
      -Michelangelo

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      • #4
        It may just be a dog with a bad quality coat. Honestly, if this lady let ger dog get mats on its back, shes not a client I would want to work with on handstripping. I mean, come on, who lets their westies BACK get matted?

        Sent from my SPH-L710 using Tapatalk

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        • #5
          Yeah... sounds like the dog just doesn't have the coat for it. I would just explain that to the owner, use a comb attachment like a 1 comb, and card the back a little. It will at least give it a more natural appearance.

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          • #6
            You can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear. If the dog doesn't have a proper terrier coat on it, stripping and rolling such a coat is a waste of your time, the owner's money, and the dog won't thank you for pulling its Bichon-y hair out by the roots either.

            Lose/lose/lose all the way around. I wouldn't strip that dog. No way.

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            • #7
              It was the first time I did this one and the owner didn't tell me how was his dog hair so when I saw him, I asked her twice If she really wanted to a stripping. I told her I'll try! Then I only card him... I never seen a westie with mats on his back! Even the ones who came only twice a year!
              Plus if it gave him some skin issues...
              I don't know if she bought him to a breeder, but she told me her last westie had the same hair!
              For the next time I think I'll show her what really is terrier coat or to show him to another westie breeder! I don't know if she will call me back xD but stripping hair who doesn't need to, I'm afraid that it give him skin issues.

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              • #8
                The fact that we are talking about a 10 month old puppy here you cannot expect a nice harsh coat yet. Often a Westie puppy has a softer coat and indeed needs to be hand stripped to promote the harsh hair to come in. The matts on the back are probably shed that isn't being combed out. This often happens during puppy coat changes. It is not uncommon to have it take 3 or more years on a pet quality Westie to get a nice double coat. As for the skin issues, a lot of people overbathe their Westie puppies and dry the skin out, or they overbrush and overstimulate the oils in the coat causing a greasy puppy, at which point they overbathe creating a vicious cycle that wreaks havoc on the skin. It is truly a personal choice if you wish to continue to hand strip this puppy, but if you end up clipping it better to use a comb attachment rather than a blade. JMO

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                • #9
                  Most of the westie puppies I do have harsh coat thin but harsh.

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                  • #10
                    I second that. Same with our puppies

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                    • #11
                      How fortunate for you to have puppies with proper coat to work with. Most of the pups around here are soft and the owners just want them clipped with a #2 Wahl comb in a Westie style. (Including me with my Angus!) Practicality is best if they are not being shown.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by kat05 View Post
                        Most of the westie puppies I do have harsh coat thin but harsh.
                        This is my experience as well.
                        I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free.
                        -Michelangelo

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by wild4westies View Post
                          How fortunate for you to have puppies with proper coat to work with. Most of the pups around here are soft and the owners just want them clipped with a #2 Wahl comb in a Westie style. (Including me with my Angus!) Practicality is best if they are not being shown.
                          I got a lot of westies and I have only one who hand stripped, but she has a perfect coat to!
                          So what should I do for the next time? Keep on just deshedding ?

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                          • #14
                            Yes, keep raking the undercoat. Tell the owner that the quality of the coat needs to change before you can start hand stripping, or else it would just hurt the dog and not make a difference. Find out if they are bathing at home. One of my hand strip customers refused to follow my instructions and bathed their wft a couple of times a week. I eventually fired them, they couldn't follow basic instructions and it was ruining their dogs skin and coat. If your westie customers are bathing too often, this could be a problem. Tell them you will reevaluate in 6 months.
                            I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free.
                            -Michelangelo

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