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  • Topic: Loving Touch

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    • August 8, 2012 11:22 AM CDT
    • Loving Touch

      I have 2 Maltese's that both need a complete shave down. Both extremely heavily matted. I did a Sheltie yesterday. Absolutely loved that! She was only in for a sanitary clip but she was in pretty bad condition. I had trouble getting her completely wet, but I think I figured out a trick. I read in my books that a groomers trade trick is to rub a bit of shampoo in while you're trying to saturate the dog. Might have to try that next time.

    • August 8, 2012 9:58 PM CDT
    • Loving Touch

      LovingTouch said:

      Hmmm. I did that. It was while I was shampooing her that I realised her coat wasn't thoroughly wet underneath. So, what did I do wrong then? Maybe not enough shampoo?

      On a packed and/or dirty coat it can sometimes be hard to get them thoroughly wet the first time. When bathing, you want to concentrate on getting the skin as clean as the hair itself.


      I hold the end of the hose between my thumb and index finger, kind of level with my hand. I use my hand to massage and work the coat, lifting it so I can get under it to the skin with the water.


      On a really dirty coat, you may need to do a light shampoo and rinse to remove some of the oils,  then do a real good shampoo and scrub, then rinse.




      If you don't go after what you want, you'll never have it. If you don't ask, the answer is always no. If you don't step forward, you're always in the same place.

    • August 9, 2012 8:47 AM CDT
    • Loving Touch

      Well, since I had such a quiet day I decided to give my own little boy a grooming session. He is extremely groomer shy. He won't sit still for even a minute and tries jumping off the table. Even in the bath he just about climbs over me to get out. I always end up with scratches all over my arms. I've only had him for about a month. When I first got him he was severely matted so I had to completely shave him. Now I'm dying for his coat to grow back! I'm trying to groom him as much as possible to get him used to it. He is nearly 2 years old. Supposedly Maltese X Shih Tzu, but I don't see either of those breeds in him. I brushed and combed him, shaved a couple of mats out of his ears, clipped the soil away from his eyes and face, cleaned his ears, clipped his stomach and rectal areas, trimmed his nails, bathed and dried him and gave him a final brush. I used the advice I was given here and held the hose between my thumb and index finger and shampooed and rinsed him off twice. I was amazed at how well the coat came up!

    • August 9, 2012 6:50 PM CDT
    • Loving Touch

      They always are :-). My 2yo Boxer gets her nails dremeled twice a week and you'd think she never sees a grinder with all the crying and carrying on she does.
      You stop learning you stop growing, stop growing you stagnate and die
    • August 9, 2012 8:19 PM CDT
    • Loving Touch

      He's cute. Out of my 4, the Sheba is the screamer. Boy can she bend metal!!! Otherwise, I brush my Pap every night and you would think she would at least pretend to enjoy the attention. Owell

    • August 9, 2012 9:16 PM CDT
    • Loving Touch

      :-) Makes me feel a lot better! I'm glad to see I'm not the only one with this problem. I found holding his ear (and I don't mean twisting it or holding it till it hurts him either lol) helps. I have no idea why!

    • August 12, 2012 12:00 AM CDT
    • Loving Touch

      I'm doing 2 Maltese's today and having a really bad day! I've nicked the quick on one's nail and the other one is really sensitive with one of his paws. I decided to time myself instead of making an approxmation. When I noticed that other newbies were taking twice as long as I said I was taking I thought maybe I was overestimating my time. I was right. I decided to stick to the way I have been grooming so I can compare it properly and then switch to another technique I was told about on here. At the moment I brush, comb, demat, clean ears, clean eyes, trim paw pads, trim nails, clip stomach area, clip rectal area, wash, dry, clip and then the finishing touches. Someone suggested not doing all the pre-grooming stuff (from brush to clip rectal area) until after the bath. Today I have done the pre-grooming stuff on the 2 dogs and it's taken me nearly 2 hours! I still have to wash, dry and clip yet. I'll post photos when I'm finished.

    • August 12, 2012 5:35 AM CDT
    • Loving Touch

      Not a good day's grooming. As I said, I nicked the quick the girl's (Devon) nail and the boy (Brutus) was too sensitive with his paw. The bath went really well, but then I got interrupted. I'm a foster carer for an animal rescue organisation and a potential adopter and turned up to have a look at a cat. It meant the dogs pretty much dried by themselves, but it also meant that even though they were dropped off at 1pm they weren't ready to be picked up until 6:30! Luckily, the owner was very understanding. I also think I cut Brutus' coat too short. The owner said "take it all off". He didn't seem to have any complaints about it. I used a 1/16" soc reverse for Brutus. With Devon I changed to a 1/4" soc but didn't do reverse. The legs on Brutus aren't done properly and neither are the paws on either of them. They got trimmed, but not finished. But when the owner was leaving he said he'd see me in 6 to 8 weeks.

    • August 12, 2012 7:22 AM CDT
    • Loving Touch

      If you don't mind, I'd like to critique your dogs and give you some pointers. I hope with the responses to your posts so far that you know I'm trying to help. You will find, though, that I tend to be brutally honest!


      Yes the first dog is too short. The first thing to correct would be to never, ever let a dog like this dry on it's own. Someone else on here posted a picture of, I think, a Wheaten when the dog was air dried and then when he was HV'd. The difference, without any grooming changes, was amazing. To get a good finish, youhave to hand dry your dog. Even if you cage for a bit to damp, youhave to finish with the hand dryer. I am a rescuer also and often show dogs at my shop, have cats dropped off, etc. My rescue work cannot interfere with  my business. The cat adopter should have been scheduled for another time or turned away and told to come back at a better time if they just showed up. When you are "at work" your business is your focus.


      On the first dog, the belly doesn't match the body. If you are going to do the legs longer than the body then the whole body should be the same length. If you are going to do a sporting (think Cocker Spaniel) or terrier type clip (think Westie) then it should be more obvious and the skirt and legs should match. Personally, I would forget reverse clipping on a dog with a coat like this. I use reverse for short, straight coats to get them like velvet or for Shih Tzu type coats where the waves creates lines in the coat when you clip. A Maltese wiggly coat looks best (IMO) when it's allowed to be a little wiggly. I definitely like the second dog better and I think he would have looked much better had he been dried properly.


      You already know you didn't finish the feet so I won't comment. On the face, comb the top of the head forward and clip staight across, then blend back into the head with your thinners. I know that videos and schools tell you to leave a visor. Maybe it's just my clients but I have about 2 who like the visor and ask for it. I hate "awnings" on dogs and I do a more trimmed back look. I have many clients who say they come to me because nbo one does faces like I do and they love it. People like to see their dogs' eyes. And visors become messy very quickly. Take out more between the eyes, think ^ shaped and clean out the corners of the eyes with your thinners. Use a clipper with a 10 blade if you're too nervous around the eyes. IMO thinners are a more natural look, I never take clippers to a face unless I'm doing a Bichon. Trim off the little hairs at the top of the nose. Just under the nose, take thinners and get rid of the hairs between the nose and the lip. Look at the dog's face from the side and trim the bottom of the ears to chin level. See the white whiskers on the muzzle? Lift the fur on the side of the face and go in with small scissors and trim those away. The fur on the muzzle will lay flatter and give you a neater look.


      That's all for now, down the shore for me!!! Cool


      "And can it be that in a world so full and busy, the loss of one small creature makes a void in any heart, so wide and deep that nothing but the width and depth of vast eternity can fill it up?"...
      Charles Dickens

    • August 12, 2012 6:24 PM CDT
    • Loving Touch

      Hi Catsmom


      Thank you for your honest feedback. I do not have a problem with people critiqueing my work (I couldn't think of the word I was looking for!). I myself am not happy with this work, as I said. So any and all help is greatly appreciated. I don't have any thinners yet. And I only have a normal hair dryer. I'm waiting on my decent clippers to turn up (should be today or tomorrow) and some blades. As soon as I did one strip on the 1st dog I knew I'd gone too short. But there was nothing I could do. I couldn't make the rest of the body longer. :-( That's why when I did the second one I didn't do a reverse. With the 1st one, I noticed the lines in his coat when I clipped. I figured that was wrong so went shorter and that's when I realised my mistake. These dogs are (according to the owner) Maltese X Shih Tzu. The 1st one had a fine coat that reminded me of a Maltese and the 2nd one had a thicker coat that reminded me of a Shih Tzu. As for the face, I was rushed (I know, my own fault, I'm not making excuses) and was nervous getting too close with the clippers since they didn't like it. I have a photo of my own dog's face that I clipped. I'll upload it in a minute and get you to tell me if that's better. For the ears, that surprises me. Most people I talk to like their Maltese dogs clipped short with long ears and tails. This particular guy didn't comment so I don't know his preference, but if the ears are supposed to be shorter then I'll happily do it. I have a friend down the road from me who used to breed Maltese's and he hates the ears getting cut short.

      Looking forward to hearing your reply. I'll upload the photo of my own boy's face now. I clipped his face with the clippers when I was trying to get rid of the "yucky" stains (tear stains).

    • August 12, 2012 6:27 PM CDT
    • Loving Touch

      Okay, after reading your post and having a second look at the photo, I'm not so sure I did a good job after all. I'm mostly pointing out the eyes though. :-) And asking if this is what you would have done on the above 2 dogs.

    • August 12, 2012 7:13 PM CDT
    • Loving Touch

      @Loving Touch- the majority of pet owners like the ears trimmed, some shorter than others however. It's one of the questions I routinely ask a new client on intake: "Would you like the ears and tail trimmed?" Maybe 5% say no, leave them longer, but the rest like the cute and rounded look. It's also less maintenance for the owner.

      That's for the three cities I've worked in, anyways.

    • August 13, 2012 4:23 AM CDT
    • Loving Touch

      I received my new clippers today. I only have a #10 blade though. But luckily my friend wanted it all off. Her dog was pretty badly matted. I did check and she definitely wanted her tail and ears kept long. I managed to get my bath/dry time down to 40 minutes.

    • August 13, 2012 9:48 PM CDT
    • Loving Touch

      Around here, long ears and tail are the norm. I never trim them unless asked to by the owner.


      Different areas, different styles.




      If you don't go after what you want, you'll never have it. If you don't ask, the answer is always no. If you don't step forward, you're always in the same place.

    • August 13, 2012 11:09 PM CDT
    • Loving Touch

      Looking at the pics you've got here I'm thinking you need to do a lot more brushing when you're drying since I think you said earlier you don't have a forced air dryer. So til you get one brush the coat out while you're drying using short light strokes with AND against the grain of the coat. The whole idea is to get the coat as straight as possible to be able to get smooth finish with your clippers and your shears. The aim is no raggedness in the outline, but I'm getting ahead of myself. For now start with the stretch drying. BTW, you want to use a slicker brush not a pin brush.
      You stop learning you stop growing, stop growing you stagnate and die

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