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Tail stripping


georgie_girl
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What's the best way to strip or groom my Cairn's tail? What look should I be aiming for? I've read that the "cone shape" is desirable; how does one achieve that? Has anyone used the MCK on the tail?

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I've tried to use a MCK on a tail, it didn't work out very well. I've tried to hand strip a tail and I didn't do it very well :lol:

I really am bad when it comes to Heads and Tails.... Tails I think by far are the hardest. Everytime I touch a tail I leave divits in it.... my grooming teacher has asked me to stop touch Mett & Bratt's tails! I do know a few tips, treat the tail like it's a xmas tree... fan the hair out (so it's flat top and bottom and out at the sides, when you done then fan the hair so it's flat on the sides and up on top and in back) That is the wealth my knowledge!

Tracy, Brattwrust & Mettwurst a.k.a The Gremlins
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Tails can be challenging. I'm no expert (a scandalously bad groomer actually) but in the spirit of sharing the misery, here's what I usually try to do. I start with the tip and pull it down to the very tip of the tail, so that the tail length is only as long as the tail itself - maybe a 1/16 or 1/8 inch extra, only. (If I'm in a hurry and cheating with a non-show dog, I might just break the hair off just above the tip with a stripping knife or - heaven forfend, thinning shears - doing so will leave a bit of a flat-top, but at least the tail is the right length and shaping can commence to re-form the tip.) Then I fan it just like Mysticsol8 describes, flattening the tail out in each axis (front-to-back, then side-to-side). Imagining a line that makes a triangle from tip to root, I pull from tip to root along that line any hairs that stick out past my imaginary line. First down one side, then down the other. Flatten on the other axis, repeat.

Couple of nicely shaped tails:

gallery_3_3_10458.jpg gallery_3_3_9891.jpg

Some folks just use thinning shears along those imaginary lines. Either way, the goal is indeed to end up with a Christmas tree type cone.

It's very easy to take a bunch of hair off the base because the coat there is usually coarser and easier to pull. But most of the hair that needs to come off is usually on the top two-thirds or so, where it is more sensitive (I think the tip of the tail is pretty sensitive) and harder to pull. For some reason I find the front of the tail is usually easier to pull than the rear of the tail, too.

But it's all just hair and will grow back, even from a rat tail. How symmetric your cone will be can also depend on the natural shape of your dog's tail - if it's low-set, or curved, you can still achieve the basic shape. Really good groomers can achieve miracles of perception with sub-optimum tails, but I'm happy if I manage to avoid the aforementioned rat tail tongue.gif

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I don't know why but all my Cairns were/are very protective of their tails! I usually have to pry the tail out from between their legs just to comb it.

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Glad you asked that question because I was wondering too. I got a bunch of grooming tools from colonel potters. I got a 12 mck, the set of macclellans and a pair of thinning shears. I also got a pair of shears from the pet store. I have it all. Have I been able to make my dogs look good like the groomer. Heck no. That is why, folks, they get paid the big bucks!

LOL

Jetersmom(and Bernie's)

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Heh, I'm definitely not an expert at stripping (I have yet to figure out how to roll the coat- I just end up doing a complete strip 1-2 times a year)- When I want to do my dog's tail, I have to drag him to the basement steps (which are wooden and he's afraid to climb up or down, so he stays still). I always end up with a rat tail :) But it grows back and looks pretty, so I guess that's all that matters in the end.

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Boy, am I glad I'm not the only one who finds tail stripping a little overwhelming haha...

OK, I shall work on that "Christmas tree type cone" -- wish me luck! :)

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I made my first attempt at hair trimming around the tail last weekend. Chewie was not terribly happy about it! We had just returned from a potty walk and he had managed to get himself a nice "dangler" hung up amongst all that hair. We hurried home and a grabbed the baby wipes and took care of it then he got his monthly bath to make sure all was clean. He's learned to sit still while I use the mck and the wire brush but when you get to his rear he get's a nervous look on his face! He could stand a little more trimming but the poor boy was emotionally exhausted after all that!

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I hate doing tails!! Unfortunately with my poor grooming skills they usually end up with a "rat tail". Oh well I suppose it beats the "fox tail" they get if I don't at least try. :confused: Maybe by the time they are 10 I'll have figured it out.

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