See Grooming Chart!
$32 X 6 X 15 = $2,880
If you take your dog to
the groomer 6 times a year at an average cost of $32 (usually more) over the average Westie's life of 15 years, that is around $2,880. That does not factor
in your time and travel. How much for gas?
My intention is not to try
to put groomers out of business, but the number one question we have
from Westie owners is related to grooming. Let me tell you what we do
and then you decide.
spend quite a bit of money buying grooming tools, so you want to be sure
you are willing to learn. Don't waste your money if you are not willing
to commit. To do it right, you will need the following kinds of tools:
I use the clippers to trim
the top third of the ear (#10 blade), and the entire inside of the ear
down to the ear canal. The #10 blade usually comes with your
clippers. I use the hemostat to pull the hair from the ear canal.
This does not hurt your dog.
|Andis® Detachable Blade Clipper Model AG 2-Speed
Click HERE to see Andis Blade Usage Chart.
If you ever want to
clipper your Westie, you will need to purchase a #3 3/4 or #4 blade for
the back and sides. Some use a #5, but that is a little short for us.
The #10 is used for the ears.
- Body, back, and sides (#3 & 3/4
- Head, tail, paw pads, and
- Ear tips (#10 blade)
Some like the coat even
shorter and will use a #4 or #5. Remember, if you clipper your Westie,
the coat may become wavy and soft. It is just a matter of
what you want.
JI-J2 Jeffers® Stainless Steel Shears
You will want to buy the scissors that feel good to you.
I use this style. They usually cost around $15-20. Of course, you can
spend $150 or more. You can buy this pair at JeffersPet or go
to some place like Sally Beauty Supply and buy a pair for $15-20. They
will last a long time. Do not use them for anything else and do not
drop them on the floor. You will use scissors to shape the face, ears,
tail, and trim the skirt. Remember to trim the paw pads on the bottom.
You will use the thinning shears to thin the hair on the
face, top of the head, beard, neck, and tail. The cost is comparable to
(4) Animal Grooming Combs
These combs with metal
teeth are easy to hold on to and are easy on your hand. They are
Self-Cleaning Slicker Brush
This brush is good for brushing the leg hair up and blow
drying at the same time. To brush up while drying allows the leg to
have that full look after drying and combing/brushing out. Never use
the heat setting on the dryer. Always dry with cool or "very low" heat
to keep from drying out the skin. I personally like the small brush.
Hint: You should brush
you Westie daily. It only takes 2-3 minutes and you never have to worry
about the coat matting. Shame on you if you let that happen! Grooming
your dog daily will teach him to be patient while you brush him out.
Our dogs love to be brushed out. They lay under the grooming table
awaiting their turn. You don't even need a grooming table. Put a large
towel on the washer or dryer, and get going!
you have a lot of money, go for it! There is nothing like having a
place to groom your dog and be first class in the process.
Hint: At least once a
week, be sure to clean their ears. Use a good ear cleaner and Q-tips or
cotton balls. It is best to use a cleaner with a drying agent that
keeps down moisture in the ears. Remember, never poke into the ear
canal. Only clean around the ear. You can also use gauze. Squirt some
cleaner on it, wrap around your finger, and clean the ear canal. That
way, there is no danger of hurting your dog. You can squirt the ear
cleaner into the ear canal, and then massage the ear canal on the
outside of the ear. When you get finished massaging (most dogs love
this), he will shake his head. This is very important. Skin problems
can be caused because of ear mites. If your dog scratches, shakes his
head, check him out. If in question, take him to the vet. Ear mites
turn into infections. Many times, when that happens, ear infections
become chronic for years to come. Heed this hint!
(7) Nail Care
I use a Dremel tool for nail care. It is important to do it
couple weeks to keep the nails short. Walking your Westie down the
street helps help nails short as well.
scissor type clippers work well with puppies. You will want to get
the guillotine type for your adult dog. Be sure they are sharp and
never cut too close and get into the "quick". If you do, the next
time you want to trim nails, your dog will run!
(9) Clipper / Blades / Dryers
with Heat Control
will want to be sure to use very little or no heat
to keep from drying out your Westie's skin.
Original Mars® Coat-King - 12 blade (fine)
We use the #12 Mars Coat King. It is the next best
thing to hand stripping. It is best to use it several times weekly. To
begin, you will want to use it daily, then every other day. You will
soon determine how often to use it to maintain the coat. It simply
pulls out dead hair and does not hurt the dog. Use the Coat King on all
body parts, including face and beard. They enjoy the grooming session.
It trims out the undercoat and dead hair while unraveling and de-matting
the coat. Directions:
Place the Coat King
on the coat with light pressure and comb out in the direction of hair
NOTE: You do not need all of the
items above. But, if you take your dog to the groomer often, why not
plunge in and teach yourself to groom your own dog. It will be good for
both of you. Rather than spending approximately $2,880 over the life of
your Westie, why not have a lot of fun and groom your own dog. If you
purchased every item on this page it would cost approximately $450.
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