14 Apr 2015

Let’s Get (Hand) Stripping!

Dog Grooming, The Dog Blog No Comments

Many of you are probably wondering, what in the world is hand stripping?

Hand stripping is a process of removing dead hair from the dog to maintain the original color and texture of their original coat, commonly utilized on non-shedding dog breeds– breeds including but not limited to: Welsh Terriers, Border Terriers and Irish Terriers.

So that’s what it is… but what’s so unique about it?

Unlike clipping, hand stripping doesn’t require scissors but instead calls for a variety of stripping knives and stones and of course a pair of trained and qualified groomer hands. One of our groomers will begin by removing all the dead hairs off the coat, sometimes hair by hair and sometimes multiple hairs at once with the use of one of their tools. And after all the dead hairs are removed, a soft and dense undercoat will be discovered!

Whoa whoa.. plucking my dog? Doesn’t it hurt them?

No way! We are 100% humane here at The Dog Salon, and would never do anything to hurt your pup. Though yes the idea of plucking hairs sounds painful, when properly done by a trained groomer there is no pain (but like any time you hold your dog down they won’t like it).

Unlike the cycle of human hair and other dog breeds, wire hair has a unique cycle in which the hair gets darker and thicker as it grows. But because wire hair has life span around six months, as the hair reaches that final month it continues to get lighter and thins out – which causes the discoloration and scrappiness of the hair – and makes it easier to painlessly remove the hairs.

Some dogs do have tender spots, such as their bellies – if sensitive around there we choose not to strip the dog.

So.. why can’t I just clip it.. does it affect their health?

No, clipping doesn’t affect the health of your dog, but more so the appearance of their coat. By clipping a wire haired dog you aren’t removing the dead hair, instead making it shorter and keeping the coat faded and soft – taking away from its original wire texture.

I usually get my dog clipped, but I want to restore their coat– I want them hand stripped.
Here’s what we say, the earlier and more often you get your dog hand stripped, the easier and more successful the process is. Unfortunately, once you get your dog clipped there is no guarantee that their hair will grow back into its original texture – but give it about six months and usually after a couple of strips their wire coat will start to grow.

The Dog Salon is one of the only grooming salons in Charlotte to offer this service! Currently, we are only taking appointments for this on Fridays. Call or email us to set up an appointment!

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