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Tools for grooming tail and legs/feet


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Hello to All,

I have been making an effort to do all my Cairns' grooming myself.

I am using a combination of handstripping as well as using the Mars Coat King #16.

I just can't seem to get the tails to look quite right. Honestly, they do not look anything like what a professional might do :shock:

They are too feathery looking. However, if I attempt to strip by hand they have a "fit".

Is there any tool out there that can be used effectively on the tail?

Likewise, I want to purchase a finishing scissors. I think, help me out here, that this might be used for the feet, legs, possibly the tail and face???

What type/size/brand would you suggest? If a finishing scissors is not appropriate, what is the correct tool?

One more question, is it part of routine grooming to express anal glands or is this something that is only done on an as needed basis? How doew when distinguish when it is necessary?



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I cannot speak to the grooming question. But, as far as the glands go, we do it anytime Digger starts doing the scoot move. My husband does it, and has showed me where, but not exactly how. He did say it is quite messy, so have them outside or in the tub for easy clean up.

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Thanks, thinning shears - that was the word I was searching for!

Oh, yes, the "scoot"- neither of them has exhibited that behavior to date.

Although I am an RN and my fingers have gone into places I don't even like to think about, I may defer to a pro on this one!


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I could use help with tails, too, although I think it is in large part genetic. Petey's tail is very feathery and somewhat "droopy", while Belle's tail is straight up and Christmas tree shape with very little effort on my part. Neither like their back side or tail groomed, either.

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I use the Mars Coat King on Packy's tail and then clean it up further with thinning shears. I have never been able to get the "carrot look" to his tail. I don't worry about it too much though. I kind of like his happy, little feathery tail!

Jandy and my Cairns, Kirby & Phinney 
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I have a question about the use of thinning shears...hope you don't mind me sneaking it into your post, pookiegirl.

Do you make several "cuts" at the base of the hair or at different lengths? It works great on Winnie who has very thick hair on her hind quarters and I have to sissor a few times just to get a comb in it.

I like the stripping knife but mine have fits too if I get near their sensitive area

Edited by kayharley
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