Sometimes I get a lot more credit than I deserve. A few weeks ago a favorite customer called to see if I would show groom her young Scottish Deerhound. I don't know about you, but I rarely see the breed, and a show groom? I was clueless. "I want to bring her to the best, " my customer said. I've groomed her small breed dogs for years, and she has a lot of faith in my skills. I was glad someone did.
I knew enough about the breed to know that "less is more" for presenting in the show ring. Their coarse coat is shown in a very natural state. A good bath, some Show Seasons Results Rinse, a blow dry and brushing would make her look pretty darn good. Beyond that, I needed help. I looked on line, haunted some Deerhound sites to read up on tips, and posted on a grooming FB page asking if anyone had first hand knowledge. In moments a leading industry goddess answered me with some good tips. This is one of the many things I love about the grooming industry. Those who know are almost always willing to share with those of us who don't.
I used my wonderful Andis shedding tool to remove a little dead coat, concentrating on her shoulders to accentuate her muscle and show her nice conformation, also to de-bulk some thick coat. I took off a little more on her rear to show off angulation. Then I stood back, and plucked some under her tuck up where it was looking straggly. I lightly trimmed her feet while I was at it. I trimmed and Dremmeled her nails to make them neat and smooth. Her owner was watching, and she was happy. But I wasn't. Her head looked a mess. "May I tidy up her bangs a bit?" The hair was swooping over her left eye like a '50's film actress. Her owner agreed. We both liked the look. Her cheeks were awfully full, though. "I think her head would look more shapely if we took some of this off," I said. I didn't really know, but I was letting intuition guide me. "Go for it," she told me. I did. Then we plucked the long hairs off of her ears and tidied the edges with thinning shears. All of a sudden she looked more elegant than unkempt. And that is where we stopped.
I forgot to take pictures like a dummy, but here is a pretty shot I snagged off the 'net of a pretty dog that looks a good bit like her.
Imagine my delight when I got the message, "Yesterday and today, first in class. Reserve winners yesterday, winners today."
A beautiful dog graced my table. With skill from years of grooming other breeds, and a little home work, I was able to help her show off to her full potential. I love it intuition meets education.