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McClellan or Mars Coat King


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Hello All,

I have not posted in a while. My Mom passed away on March 4th. I am attempting to make life as "normal" as possible, don't know if it will ever feel "normal" again.

My Cairns keep me going as they will not be ignored!

Now that I have two, I am considering attempting the grooming myself. I did strip my older Cairn in the past but it is very difficult for her, and me, as I am visually impaired which makes a tedious task even more SLOW going.

I have read many posts regarding the Mars Coat King and, also, stripping knives such as McCellan.

I am wondering which would be the better of the two to purchase for a first timer. Also, if I purchase the Mars, which type should I purchase?

CPCRN seems to favor the 16 blade but PetEdge.com suggests the 10 blade.

Additionally, is there one place more reasonably priced versus another?

Thanks for any info/advice/suggestions.


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Barbara, I'd like to express my deepest condolences on the loss of your mother. I can't even imagine the pain that you are going through. I hope that as the days pass, so will the pain and you will soon find comfort in the memories you have of her. Take care of yourself.

Regarding your question about the Mars Coat King vs the stripping knife, I think that given your limited vision the Mars CK would be better. It does a good enough job keeping the coat from looking like a yak without a lot of work. It's much better than clipping, to be sure. I use the 16 blade one with good results.

Please come back and keep us posted.



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Oh, my heart goes out to you. I hope in time you find peace and acceptance. I'm not sure the sense of loss ever truly goes away - it's been twelve years here and it still seems like only yesterday.

I can tell you for certain sure, Cairns are the best medicine possible. They bring such a strong sense of the present, and of joy for each day we are gifted with.

CAIRNTALK: Questions? Need help? → Support Forum Please do not use PMs for tech support
CRCTC: Columbia River Cairn Terrier Club 



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Barbara.....I am truly sorry to hear about your Mom. I know exactly how you are feeling as I lost my Mom just a few months ago, too. She had Alzheimer's and it was the worst pain I believe I have ever felt. The only way I can describe it, just leaves a hole in my heart. I know I will never feel the same again.....

About your grooming question....I use the #10 and it gets some coat off but my guess is that the #16 would get more off. I am considering buying another since the #10 works well for my older female (thinner coat). But, my younger male is a 'wooley bear' and it doesn't help that much.


Cathy and Piper

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Pookiegirl and Cathyann, please accept my most heartfelt condolences on the loss of your mothers. I lost my dad 7 years ago and some days it feels like yesterday. The love your Cairns bring you will really help tremendously.

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I also am so sorry to hear of your mother passing away. I lost my dad in 1976..he was 52 years old and was hit by a reckless driver. The pain of losing a loved one is so overwhelming but in time memories can help ease the heartache.

Cherish your Cairns and let them give you comfort....I believe they can feel the pain of their owners.

I use the Mars #15 also but only sparingly to thin out before I pull.


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Guest Guest


Thank you all for the heartfelt condolences. It is comforting to know there are such kind people here. The special memories I have of Mom comfort me even now.

I only wish she could have seen my new little guy, she would have just loved his antics!

I have decided to try my luck with the Mars Coat King #16 blade. Initially, I only intend to use it on my older Cairn, Zoe. The little guy is only 9 weeks old and does not need any stripping as of yet. I am trying to do a little "pulling" here and there just to condition him to being groomed.

So far he just doesn't want to sit still at all because there are far too many interesting things to discover in his new home. I can truly say I am EXHAUSTED! I forgot what it was like to have a Cairn puppy around. He sure does keep me occupied which helps a great deal right now.


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Oops, the previous post if from me. I forgot to sign in. I usually clean my cookies after using the Internet, which means I automatically get signed out.


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I'm so sorry to hear of your mothers passing. It sounds like you have wonderful memories of your mother which will comfort you in the future.

Puppies ARE alot of work! Scout was 2 when we adopted Finch and even in 2 years I had forgotten how much work puppies are!!!!!!!! I felt like I was running a day care center! LOL! Enjoy the little one...they grow up so fast...Finch will be 1 in a few weeks!

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I hope God will comfort you at this time of loss.

I am so glad you asked that question. I am a new Cairn daddy of two boy pups, and will read your replies thouroughly.

Thanks and God Bless


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