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Curly Coated Retrievers of SoftMaple

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Grooming a Curly Coated Retriever
 
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Keeping up the Curly coat for every day or hunting use is fairly simple: comb or brush the coat when the dog is shedding, usually twice a year, in spring and fall, and bathe him at that time as well. You may also choose to bathe him at other times as you see fit. A clean dog is a healthy, happy dog and the Curly-Coated Retriever benefits from frequent baths, at least three times a year. And from combing or brushing when he is heavily shedding.

 

trim

I need a trim!

From The Curly Coated Retriever

By Audrey Nicholls; Darelyn Curly Coated Retrievers

Trimming and Coat Preparation

Equipment: - Sharp scissors, thinning scissors, sponge, wide toothed comb.

The correct coated dog requires very little preparation, a light trim about once a month is sufficient to keep him in perfect shape, but many curlies need weekly preparation for show purposes.

Before moving onto descriptions of the necessary tasks in preparing your dog for the show ring it may be interesting to read a couple of quotations from almost ninety years ago.

One from the early twentieth century about the preparation of the curly coated retriever’s coat states "The use of curling irons continues…… the exuberance of superfluous curly showing off the offending ringlets. It is therefore very advisable for intending purchasers unless they know a vendor to be above such practices to examine a dog of this description thoroughly before they conclude a purchase or possible disappointment may be in store for them".

Then, L.P.C.Astley, writing in 1907 likened the curly’s coat to the close fitting tightly curled beautiful head of hair on the African people opining that this was the only
"true and proper one …. Of which every knot is solid and inseperable. A coat of this quality is not capable of improvement by any methods of grooming for the simple reason that its natural condition is itself perfect. The little locks should be so close together as to be impervious to water and all parts of the body should be evenly covered with them, including the tail and legs. A bad class of coat and one that readily yealds to the faker’s art is the thin open coat, which by careful manipulation can be greatly improved!"

Ears
Trim along the edge of the leather to give a neat outline. Cut the curls on the ears to make them short, especially the ones on the top of the ears, but not so short as to lose the curl.

Head
nov25h Trim the hair from underneath the ear towards the throat. This must be done at least a fortnight before a show so that the cut edge does not cause the dog to "Fly his ears". Some dogs do not have the desired flat hair on the top of the skull – a tendency for a top knot. If there are waves or curles here, trim them back with thinning scissors. Trim the curls to give a smooth line to the top of the head

Throat and Neck
Curlies do have a tendency to grow very long hair in this area. Just cut back to give a neat outline down the brisket.

Forelegs
Trim hair round elbow. Trim curls on the back of the legs to give a neat outline. Don’t cut too close unless you have a heavy boned dog.

Pasterns
Cut hair close to the skin to make a neat foot

Body
Trim curls to give a neat outline but do not cut too short

Hindquarters
Trim any long hair on legs. Cut hair on hocks very short. Some dogs do not grow surplus hair here.

Tail
Cut hair on underside of the tail fairly short. Trim curls on the rest of the tail but not too short – starting with the root and working toward the tip. Trim round the tip but not too close as this is the place that is often caught by wagging against sharp objects. The tail should be wide at the root and certainly not a "rat-tail".

Feet
Some curlies may grow hair between the toes – if they do, pull the hair upwards and cut downwards towards the nails. Push remaining hair back between the toes.

Show Preparation
I have heard of many different "secret" preparations that have been used on the coat – glycerin and Jeyes fluid, to name just two, but plain water, preferable rain water, is quite adequate.

If you are in a position that the dog can swim then this is the ideal way of wetting the coat. To keep in perfect show condition the coat needs to be thoroughly wet once a day. If the facilities for swimming are not available really soak the coat with water, with the aid of a sponge. After the dog has shaken the surplus water away, use the fingers to massage the coat in small circular movements – getting right down to the skin. All of the body, including the tail and the backs of the legs need this treatment. This will get rid of any dead hair. Pat the coat down with the flat of the hand. Any coat that is shaggy needs to be trimmed off. For a pet dog the above treatment can be done fortnightly.

A male often casts his coat once a year – a bitch after each season or false season. The easiest way to get rid of dead hair is to comb the coat out. Use a wide toothed comb (Not steel). Comb in small sections back towards the head. This is an ideal time to wash the coat with a good medicated shampoo. You can also comb out any dead coat while the shampoo is in the coat. Rinse the coat well. The Curly’s coat should be dull, but if you have a dog with a very dry coat, it will benefit from being soaked in coconut oil periodically. This treatment is particularly useful for the liver colored variety.

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nov25d Some of my personal grooming tips:

For a show coat dressing, I use the old stand by. A bottle of beer dumped in a bucket of water. Sponge, dump or spray over the coat. Let dry before ring time.

This is not only a good show dressing, but if you loose in the ring, you have 5 more beers to fall back on and console yourself! (actually, this is a coat dressing that was passed down by my mentor)

It may not help me out in the showring, but is sure gets interesting comments in the grooming area!


For every day or every week care, I use Avon Skin So Soft mixed half and half with water, put in a spray bottle and spritz on the coat.

This conditions, moisturizes, deodorizes. It also repels fleas, ticks and mosquitos.



Exert From Grooming & Preparation of the Curly-Coated Retriever for the Showring
Submitted by Sue Tokolics


Bathing – Curlies rarely require bathing, unless living indoors and leading outdoor lives as well. Frequent bathing deprives the coat of natural oils. I try to bathe my dogs 4-5 days before a show, suing a liquid shampoo as mentioned in the beginning. If close to the sea, very little can equal a swim in salt water just prior to the show to wash out dirt and grit and to harden the coat. The trick is making sure he doesn’t roll in the sand before you get him home. However, if you can’t get to the beach, shampooing is often necessary. DON’T rub your dog dry. Put him on a lead an dlet him shake most of the water off and then if necessary and you don’t have the energy to take a 1 or 2 mile walk, place a towel over his coat and pat it down hard to flatten the curly and absorb the moisture. Every day from then until the show I gently massage the coat in a circular motion with a wet hand or dampen the coat down with water and slap it in. Once again, a shower of rain does wonders. On the morning of the show a light coat of oil rubbed onto the hand and massaged onto the coat brings up a shine. Never overdo this or you’ll produce an oily greasy coat that looks terrible. I prefer to spray the coat with water about 10 minutes before judging to lift off the dust and show off the curl. Again – don’t overdo it, a fine mist of spray is all that is needed.

Trimming – Very little is required, but I’ll begin with the head. The ears should be trimmed to a neat outline, removing all hair protruding beyond the "leathers". The curls on the ears will become much curlier if kept short. Remove all the bulky curls and hair under the ears so they lie close to the head. The line of curls on the top of the skull can be tidied up by trimming and accentuation a neat line where the smooth hair begins.

Feet – Remove the hair between the toes and on the pasterns.

Tail – The tail should be covered in curls and taper to a point. Remove the excess straggly hair, always pointing the scissors towards the tip. Pull the hair on the underside of the tail down so it can be easily cut off. (Early show training will have helped you get your dog used to his tail being handled.)

showgroomSome dogs develop worn spots on the elbows. A little Vaseline will darken them and also help the hair to grow by keeping the skin sort.

If it is necessary to put a collar on your dog when free, I prefer a rolled leather collar as it doesn’t flatten the hair. I also prefer rope choker leads to chain ones for training as chain ones tend to pull the hair out.

Despite the length of this article, curlies are very easy to groom and prepare. It is important to remember that the diet requirements for all dogs vary as do various ways of preparations suit one dog better than another. Generally speaking, most curlies are best bathed a few days prior to a show, while others look best bathed the night before. On this aspect you are the best judge. When in doubt there are always others ready to offer assistance.





From Ms Viki Knowles, Blazeaway Kennels, Australia,

Originally published in the Curly Commentator

12717553_10205405300681511_2187080854848980350_n EQUIPMENT

Scissors - sharp round tipped
Steel comb
Nail Clippers
Stripping knife
Shampoo - Preferably liquid and for black curlies, special shampoo for black poodles. Leave lanolin in the coat and produce excellent results.
Vaseline
Coat Tonics or coat oils
Towels
Leads - Quite a variety available and these need to suit your dog. I prefer black for black curlies and brown for liver curlies so the outline of the dog isn't broken.

EARLY PREPARATION
Diet, exercise, and outdoor life play important roles in producing healthy dogs, with thick healthy coats. If dogs tend to be frizzy a couple of swims in the sea or river
do wonders as does a run in the rain. Diet can help improve a normally dry coat by supplements such as linseed oil, safflower oil. an egg or two a week, comme conditioning tablets or meat with higher fat content than lean beef. Don’t expect to raise your future champion on canned food, in a concrete floored (or dirt floored for that matter) pen. I'll tell you now you're wasting your time. On the other hand, if you are achieving desirable results on the diet you feed now - don't meddle.

Some curlies shed coat more severely than others. I've seen some go almost bald, while others coat changes are barely noticeable. When your curly does shed coat, then and only then you may need to take a comb or brush to it to remove the dead hair. A few weeks before showing it may pay to massage a little baby oil or linseed oil into the coat to restore luster and condition. Once a week should be sufficient, or before a swim.

Some curlies have a more open coat than others which is quite probably hereditary and little improvement can be made. I find curlies kenneled outdoors and swum in all seasons have a definite advantage over those that live in the comfort of central heating, the same as I find curlies kenneled outdoors and swum in all seasons are better specimens coat wise than those bred in warm tropical climates. Of course one always finds the exception.

I have read that poor coats can be improved by completely stripping it out and starting from scratch. I've never resorted to this so I can't comment 'for' or 'against'.

NAILS
Length of nails varies from dog to dog. Some curlies nails never require attention while others need regular attention and again I suggest you only trim nails when your dog needs it. Never take too much at any one time as you can easily cut the quick and this is quite painful and produces in the future a dog that resents the very sight of nail clippers. Plenty of exercise on hard surfaces should eliminate the need to clip nails.

TEETH
Right diet, raw bones and hard dog biscuits will keep teeth white and gums healthy. Stained teeth and poor gums usually reflect on diet, which will show itself on more than teeth.

BATHING
Curlies rarely require bathing, unless living indoors and leading outdoor lives as well. Frequent bathing deprives the coat of natural oils. I try to bath my dogs 4 to 5 days before a show, using a liquid shampoo as mentioned in the beginning. If close to the sea, very little can equal a swim in salt water just prior to the show to wash out the dirt and grit and harden the coat. The trick is making sure he doesn't roll in the sand before you get him home. However, if you can't get to the beach shampooing is often necessary. DON'T rub you dog dry. Put him on a lead and let him shale most of the water off and then if necessary, and you don't have the energy to take a 1 or 2 mile walk, place a towel over his coat and pat it down hard to flatten curl and absorb the moisture. Every day until the show I gently massage the coat in a circular motion with a wet hand or dampen the coat down with water and slap it in. Once again, shower of rain does wonders. On the morning of the show a light coat of oil rubbed onto the hand and massaged into the coat brings up a shine. Never overdo this or you'll produce an oily greasy coat that looks terrible. I prefer to spray the coat with water 10 minute before judging to lift off the dust and show off the curl. Again don't overdo it, a fine mist is all that is needed.

TRIMMING
Very little is required but I'll begin with the head. The ears should be trimmed to a neat outline, removing all hair protruding beyond the "leathers". The curls on the ears will become much curlier if kept short. Remove all the bulky curls and hair under the ears so they lie close to the head.

The line on top the skull can be tidied up by trimming and accentuating a neat line where the smooth hair begins. Some dogs lack a nice even line, even show a tendency to a 'top knot', which is quite undesirable. Use of a stripping knife will help to exaggerate the line and smooth the skull coat to give the desired effect.

IMG_4484 In some dogs, especially puppies, you may need to tidy up uneven curls to give a smooth topline in profile.

Tail curls should be short and close and the tail tapers to a point. It is not a 'rat tail' and should not be shaved free of curl as it unbalances the dog's appearance.
Remove all underside curls and they gently fray out the curls and along the tail and trim to a clean sharp line, working towards the hindquarters.

Hindquarters should be trimmed to a neat line, removing any signs of shagginess.

Elbows and forelegs - remove the tufts on the elbows. Some curlies grow little or no feathering on the rear of their forelegs so they need no attention. Others grow up to an inch of coat so comb this hair out and trim it to a neat line. You can make good use of this coat to improve the appearance of bone, so don’t cut it flush unless your curly is heavy in bone. Some curlies develop worn spots on the elbows. A little Vaseline will darken them and also help the hair grow by keeping them soft.

Remove the hair between the toes. Trim nails short. A nice clean foot is desired. Trim clean and close on the pasterns to make the dog show himself to be up on his pads. From the hock to the paw, remove any feathering so you have a smooth close covering and a clean outline.

Underline - Remove any shagginess. Some curlies grow profuse coat here while others have a "smooth underline". Comb coat down and trim to an even line.

Throat and neck - Remove shagginess to give a clean outline. Stop at the brisket.

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If you let it, your curly's tail may grow a flag, or grow bushy hair. This is fine. You may or may not want to trim it.

Untrimmed tail, and same tail after just a few minutes work.

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Curlies that are shown in conformation are trimmed to neaten up the dog’s outline. The excess hair on the back of the front and rear legs, between the toes is removed or cut short.

Before and after trimming legs and feet.

Grooming
Curly Coated Retriever FAQ

hair Keeping up the Curly coat for every day or hunting use is fairly simple: comb or brush the coat when the dog is shedding, usually twice a year, in spring and fall, and bathe him at that time as well. You may also choose to bathe him at other times as you see fit. A clean dog is a healthy, happy dog and the Curly-Coated Retriever benefits from frequent baths, at least three times a year. And from combing or brushing when he is heavily shedding.

A show dog requires additional grooming, in the form of scissoring off excess hair from tail, front and rear legs, ears, etc. This can be quite an extensive project for Curlies who have not been show-groomed before. Grooming this way is a choice of the dog's owner; the Curly-Coated Retriever standard does not require this grooming for any Curly shown in a conformation ring although it might be difficult to win in the show ring if your Curly is not groomed this way. For information about grooming for the show ring, contact your puppy's breeder or any of the listed Curly contacts.

Remember: grooming this way for the show ring is not required but is expected by most judges.

Many breeders never brush their dogs, only bathing them instead. Some use a pin brush just before bathing to loosen dead hair. Flea combs are not generally recommended as they will strip out much of the coat. A curly coat benefits from frequent swimming and outdoor exposure (which nonetheless does not make them good kennel dogs). The coat is frequently oily, which can be a problem for some allergy sufferers.

 


Groom Your Curly-Coated Retriever. DogChannel.com
A little brushing is all it takes for the Curly-Coated Retriever.

Not everything pretty takes a lot of work when grooming.

Take the tight, springy curls that are the trademark of the Curly-Coated Retriever. It might seem a dog named for its coat would require lots of grooming. In fact, Curlies sport one of the lowest-maintenance coats in the purebred world.
With just a little brushing during periods of shedding and maybe a quick trim behind the ears and tail, the Curly-Coated Retriever is ready for the show ring.

"They are wash and wear dogs," says Kitty Jungkind, attorney; past president of the Curly-Coated Retriever Club of America, and owner of three Curlies.

Grooming wasn't the main concern when English breeders conceived the breed in the late 1800s. The goal was a tough, durable hunting dog that could shrug off the thorns and branches of English hedgerows and repel water.

That legendary coat is what distinguishes a Curly-Coat from its Retriever kin.

The AKC standard says the Curly's body should be covered in a tight mass of tiny curls about as big as the end of your finger. The coat is thick, springy and a bit coarse. The face, front, front of forelegs and feet are covered by short, smooth and straight hair. There are two colors: liver and black. Liver Curlies are rare, accounting for about 15 percent of an already unique breed.

Curlies share a hairstyle with Standard Poodles, which leads to misconceptions about shedding. "They do shed, but I find they don't shed as much as some breeds," says Jungkind.

When hairs turn up on the floor (or, somehow inevitably, in the butter dish at a dinner party), it's time to give the Curly a good brushing, says Stephanie Doerr, owner of Tails A Wag'n Grooming.

Even then, it's important not to overdo it. Brushing reduces the tight curls' abilities to protect the dog from cold, damp and sharp branches and brush.

"You want curly, not frizzy," Doerr says. "The only time I brush my dogs is when they are shedding."

 


IMG_3566 IMG_4480

From The Curly Coated Retriever
By Audrey Nicholls; Darelyn Curly Coated Retrievers

I have heard of many different "secret" preparations that have been used on the coat – glycerin and Jeyes fluid, to name just two, but plain water, preferable rain water, is quite adequate.

If you are in a position that the dog can swim then this is the ideal way of wetting the coat. To keep in perfect show condition the coat needs to be thoroughly wet once a day. If the facilities for swimming are not available really soak the coat with water, with the aid of a sponge. After the dog has shaken the surplus water away, use the fingers to massage the coat in small circular movements – getting right down to the skin. All of the body, including the tail and the backs of the legs need this treatment. This will get rid of any dead hair. Pat the coat down with the flat of the hand. Any coat that is shaggy needs to be trimmed off. For a pet dog the above treatment can be done fortnightly.

 


Exert From Grooming & Preparation of the Curly-Coated Retriever for the Showring
Submitted by Sue Tokolics
IMG_8124

Bathing – Curlies rarely require bathing, unless living indoors and leading outdoor lives as well. Frequent bathing deprives the coat of natural oils. I try to bathe my dogs 4-5 days before a show, suing a liquid shampoo as mentioned in the beginning. If close to the sea, very little can equal a swim in salt water just prior to the show to wash out dirt and grit and to harden the coat. The trick is making sure he doesn’t roll in the sand before you get him home. However, if you can’t get to the beach, shampooing is often necessary. DON’T rub your dog dry. Put him on a lead an dlet him shake most of the water off and then if necessary and you don’t have the energy to take a 1 or 2 mile walk, place a towel over his coat and pat it down hard to flatten the curly and absorb the moisture. Every day from then until the show I gently massage the coat in a circular motion with a wet hand or dampen the coat down with water and slap it in. Once again, a shower of rain does wonders. On the morning of the show a light coat of oil rubbed onto the hand and massaged onto the coat brings up a shine. Never overdo this or you’ll produce an oily greasy coat that looks terrible. I prefer to spray the coat with water about 10 minutes before judging to lift off the dust and show off the curl. Again – don’t overdo it, a fine mist of spray is all that is needed.

 


From How to Raise and Train Curly Coated Retriever by Eileen Clark
TFH Publications Inc.

To prepare a curly for the show ring it is best to start about two weeks before the show. Bathe him well and continue to dampen and press his curls into place daily for about a week. He may then be given another bath if necessary. One will have to use discretion when deciding the day to choose for the dog’s final bath. It is possible to wash some curlies the night before the show and not get a fluffy coat, others will need for or five days in which to get the coat to settle down. I prefer to give mine their final bath three days before the show, afterwards going over the coat two or three times daily for the last few days with a moistened sponge.

 


From Ms Viki Knowles, Blazeaway Kennels, Australia,
Originally published in the Curly Commentator

Frequent bathing deprives the coat of natural oils. I try to bath my dogs 4 to 5 days before a show, using a liquid shampoo as mentioned in the beginning. If close to the sea, very little can equal a swim in salt water just prior to the show to wash out the dirt and grit and harden the coat. The trick is making sure he doesn't roll in the sand before you get him home. However, if you can't get to the beach shampooing is often necessary. DON'T rub you dog dry. Put him on a lead and let him shale most of the water off and then if necessary, and you don't have the energy to take a 1 or 2 mile walk, place a towel over his coat and pat it down hard to flatten curl and absorb the moisture. Every day until the show I gently massage the coat in a circular motion with a wet hand or dampen the coat down with water and slap it in. Once again, shower of rain does wonders. On the morning of the show a light coat of oil rubbed onto the hand and massaged into the coat brings up a shine. Never overdo this or you'll produce an oily greasy coat that looks terrible. I prefer to spray the coat with water 10 minute before judging to lift off the dust and show off the curl. Again don't overdo it, a fine mist is all that is needed.

 


From Curly-Coated Retriever, a Complete and Reliable handbook.
By Gary and Mary Meek. TFH Publications Inc.

Regular bathing will help keep normal coat drop under control and your Curly companion smelling and feeling good. People with allergies should keep their Curly clean, as dust and pollens trapped in the coat are the very things to which their owners are sensitive. Curlies that are only bathed a few times a year tend to feel oily as the coat gets dirty, and dad hair and dirt accumulate in the coat.

A normal bathing routine would include the following: running through the coat with an undercoat rake before the bath; bathing with a pet shampoo and working the shampoo into the coat using a massaging action with your fingers to help loosen and bring the dead coat to the surface; a thorough rinsing and pat down with a towel; and a good shake or two by the dog and off to drip dry.

 


Grooming the Curly-Coated Retriever

 

Bathing: Comb through the coat to be sure there are no mats, especially behind the ears and between the hind legs. Use a shampoo that does not soften the coat, such as those for terriers or poodles. No cream rinse. Pat with a towel or let the dog shake and drip-dry. Never brush or blow dry -–or your curly will look like a poodle.

Coat Dressing: Bathe several days before the show to allow the coat time to settle. If you feel the coat needs dressing, try any of the following.


To show a dog in AKC, you can not have any foreign substance on the dog when it enteres the ring.

 

bath1 Section 8-C. No dog shall be eligible to compete at any show and no dog shall receive any award at any show in the event the natural color or shade of natural color or the natural markings of the dog have been altered or changed by the use of any substance whether such substance may have been used for cleaning purposes or for any other reason. Such cleaning substances are to be removed before the dog enters the ring.

If in the judge’s opinion any substance has been used to alter or change the natural color or shade of natural color or natural markings of a dog, then in such event the judge shall withhold any and all awards from such dog, and the judge shall make a note in the judge’s book giving his reason for withholding such award. The handler or the owner, or both, of any dog or dogs from which any award has been withheld for violation of this Section of the rules, or any judge who shall fail to perform his duties under this Section, shall be subject to disciplinary action

Having said all that.... you will see people take magic marker to cover up callouses on elbows, and even to blacken in toenails! You will see marker or shoe polish used to make a not so black nose blacker, or to cover any area on the body that has skin showing. Whole dogs have been given the Miss Clairol treatment if they are sun bleached, or if the liver color isn't as dark as the owner wants it.

As far as coat preparation, you will see all sorts of goops, concoctions, sprays, jells...... But everyone will tell you they do nothing but spray the coat with water! A perfect coat needs nothing more. Those not so perfect coats can be helped along with those foreign substances we are not allowed to use.

I have used all sorts of goops on my dogs. (I used to show Irish Setters.....) but now I have gone to the minimalist way of preparing a dog for the showring. A wise old breeder once told me about using the beer in the bucket of water coat preparation. That seems to work great, easy to get, and if you don't win...you have 5 more from the 6 pack to help ease your pain!

The coat should be dull. You won't see many dull coats in the show ring. People spray all sorts of oils, conditioners, gloss and shinning products on the coat. Mink oil spray is quite common. One good thing about this, is you can get it with sun screen....so your black coats don't rust, and the liver ones don't bleach blond.

You will hear "Don't brush the coat, it will ruin it!" Well, it will frizz it, but not ruin it. Here is one of my dogs before and after brushing.

 

BHDbefore1
Here is the coat before. Nice and dull.

 

 

BHDbefore2
During combing. You notice the coat is all frizzed. The individual curls are broken up.

 

 

BHDbefore3
I dumped water on her, and spritzed a bit of Mink Oil on the coat. This is what she looked like when dry. See, the coat was not damaged by the combing. (It was hard to drag the comb thrugh the coat though.)

 


An open coat is often helped by these coat preperations. Here is one of my dogs with a soft open coat before and after some doctoring up.

 

BHDbefore4
This is before. You see not a lot of curl.

 

 

BHDbefore5
This is after dumping water on the coat.

 

 

BHDbefore6
This is the coat with "Snap Back Curl" and spritzed with Mink Oil. The coat is dry here, but keeps some of the shine. The Snap Back helps the individual curls find each other. Gives the illusion of more curl. Any good judge once he puts his hands on the dog will know her coat isn't correct, but it gives the overall appearance of a better coat.

 

IMG_8137 According to the A.K.C., "The coat is a distinguishing characteristic and quite different from that of any other breed. The body coat is a thick mass of small, tight, crisp curls, lying close to the skin, resilient, water resistant, and of sufficient density to provide protection against weather, water and punishing cover. Curls also extend up the entire neck to the occiput, down the thigh and back leg to at least the hock, and over the entire tail. Elsewhere, the coat is short, smooth and straight, including on the forehead, face, front of forelegs, and feet. A patch of uncurled hair behind the withers or bald patches anywhere on the body, including bald strips down the back of the legs or a triangular bald patch on the throat, should be severely penalized. A looser, more open curl is acceptable on the ears. Sparse, silky, fuzzy or very harsh, dry or brittle hair is a fault. Trimming--Feathering may be trimmed from the ears, belly, backs of forelegs, thighs, pasterns, hocks, and feet. On the tail, feathering should be removed. Short trimming of the coat on the ear is permitted but shearing of the body coat is undesirable."

Use blending shears to remove stray hairs from the face leaving a smooth appearance.

Don't fluff dry with the intent to straighten the coat, it is of course meant to be curly. Use blending shears or scissors to remove stray hairs from the body as needed

 


Surprisingly, the Curly-Coated Retriever's beautiful coat does not require too much grooming. Excessively brushing or combing the Curly Coated Retriever's coat can cause the curls to break apart and lose their texture. This creates the dreaded "frizzy" effect, with which curly-haired humans are all too familiar. Therefore, keep brushing to an as-needed basis. When your Curly-Coated Retriever is in need of a good brushing, gently run a metal comb or small slicker brush through the coat and bathe your dog afterward so the curls maintain their shape.

WHAT YOU NEED

Slicker, bristle or steel pin brush
2-in-1 comb
Shedding blade (for heavy shedders)
Liquid detangler or baby oil

 


The coat of the Curly Coated Retrievers should be brushed as lit­tle as possible as brushing them as this will make their coat frizzy, it is recommended to wet their coat after brushing as this will resume their curls, however brushing should not be avoided when they are shedding. If the coat becomes too long, it can be trimmed with scissors.

 


ear3       ear2

Cleaning up and trimming under the ears.

Before and After

ear5       ear6

ear4      ear1

Onced trimmed the ears will lay flat 

 


How to Groom Your Curly Coated Dog

 

This isn’t the most difficult type of coat to look after, if kept at the proper length the tangles will be minimal.

Curly haired dogs require a bit more care than dogs with a straight coat. The coat can become tangled if it’s not looked after properly. This isn’t the most difficult type of coat to look after, if kept at the proper length the tangles will be minimal.

Two inches is the general recommended length for a curly haired dog’s coat. Letting it grow to excessive length can put your dog’s coat at risk of catching on things, picking up dust, dirt and twigs. This doesn’t have to be done too often though; every six to eight weeks will suffice.

If you’re planning on entering your dog in competitions or shows, it may be better to bring your dog to a professional groomer. They’re often used to grooming dogs for shows and know how to properly groom each breed.

Lots of people start with a bath but this isn’t absolutely necessary, but if you have time for it, why not? Doggies love baths.

Before cutting your dog’s hair, it’s important to remove all the dead hair; a slicker brush works best for this. After brushing out the dead coat, use a comb to remove all the tangles. Be careful not to rip hair out, if you feel a snag don’t just pull on it.

Many people use scissors for cutting their pets hair, these take a bit of practice so if you’re new to this a buzzer may be easier. Keep in mind that the sound of a buzzer can intrigue or frighten some dogs; if it’s their first time being buzzed, give them time to get used to it. In a while it will be routine just like cleaning off muddy paws.

Start with the paws
Snip any hair that will reduce traction on the foot pads
Make sure the paw hair smoothly transitions into the leg hair
Hold the skin tight so you can’t nick it
Frequently step back to ensure you’re cutting evenly

Next is the legs and underside
Cut against the lay of the fur
Lift up legs to get better viewing/cutting angles
Some people prefer bushy doggie legs, for this leave the outer leg undone

Tail time
Hold the tail still
Start at the base and work towards the end
If you want the bushy look, leave the last un trimmed

The body and belly
Start at the top and work around
Make sure to back up and check for bumps or mounds often
Blend it into the trimmed underside

Bath and a belly rub!
Lets get those natural curls.
Belly rub time! Why? Why not?
Give them a bath to rinse off the last of the hair
Towel dry, no blower

 


Grooming

Coat & Grooming: It requires only occasional bathing. The breed does shed hair, and the amount of shedding varies with the seasons and local climate conditions. Their strong fast-growing nails should be trimmed regularly with a nail clipper or grinder to avoid overgrowth, splitting and cracking. Their ears should be checked regularly to avoid a buildup of wax and debris which can result in an infection. Teeth should be brushed regularly.

 

Curly Coated Retriever Grooming :

nov25f Grooming of the Curly-Coated Retriever is considered to be a minimally time consuming process. Nails on the retriever need to be trimmed when necessary, but some never need to be trimmed at all. They should only be trimmed when necessary with special attention given not to cut the quick. Cutting the quick can be very painful and will cause bleeding. Bathing of the Curly-Coated Retriever is rarely necessary. Bathing should happen about two or three times a year. In fact, over bathing of the dog will strip the coat of its natural oils. However, it is important to note that the oils on the dog can be problematic for people with allergies therefore people who are prone to allergies should avoid the Curly-Coated Retriever as a pet. They should never be rubbed down to get them dry. They should be allowed to just air dry or a towel placed over them and gently patted down. Brushing the Curly-Coat Retriever should be done during shedding season to reduce the shed and keep the coat healthy. Typically this is when the dog is bathed as well. The coat will actually be healthier and benefit from frequent swimming and being out in the sun. Hunters that have Curlies often do not bathe or brush their dogs during the hunting season because it can help protect them from the brush and rough environments. If the dog is used as a hunting companion it is important for the owner to check the dog for any debris, cuts, or abrasions. Although this breed with generally not fuss over small wounds, it is important for them to be treated to prevent infection. Grooming for show is a little more involved but still considered to be minimal or moderate. The Curly-Coated Retriever can be groomed professionally for show or the owner can learn the qualifications of what the standards are. They are excellent dogs for agility and competitive obedience, so some grooming for competition may be necessary if you have your pet involved in those activities.

 


Curly Coated Retriever Grooming

Curlies are just one coated breed with no undercoat, as well as the small, tight curls of the show-standard dog are incredibly uncomplicated to maintain. A Curly kept as a companion or as a hunter do not must be elaborately groomed, but ought to be kept clear and absolutely free of mats for that wellness of the dog. Bathing ought to be as needed using a dog shampoo. Show ring exhibitors commonly trim feathering from your tail, ears, belly, legs, and feet. Trimming is not required when exhibiting a Curly at a conformation dog show, but most judges could possibly discount the dog if it is not trimmed. Shaving of your body coat is undesirable.

 


nov16q Grooming

Grooming your Curly Coated retriever is so easy, you won’t have to see the groomer more than twice a year. Grooming is easiest when you start young. Reinforce that this is a relaxing experience so you Curly reacts well. Keep his nails trimmed and watch for any bad smells. Curlys don’t normally smell bad. Whenever they start to shed, give him a bath to keep his coat from drying out.

 


Coat and grooming

The thick coat consists of tight curls that protect the dog from brambles and icy water. Even the ears, back of the head, neck and tapering tail are covered with small curls. Little grooming is necessary, and occasional bathing should be fine. The possible colours are black or liver.


Grooming the Curly-Coated Retriever

Show trim

Trims done a week ahead may be done with a #7 and #4 clipper blade or with regular shears. On the day of the show, use thinning shears or a razor dresser such as a "Duplex" or a cutting stripper such as a "Pedigree".

Head: Trim hair short under the ears (#7 Blade) so ears will lie flat to the head. Take down the hair on the ears to ½ - ¾ inch and trim close all around the edges. The object is to make the ears look small and tight to the head. Remove the whiskers. Neaten the line of curls across the top of the head. The line should be straight or a natural arc, not forming a point.

Neck: If your dog has a neck that is a little short of heavy, shorten the coat in the same pattern as setters. No shaving. The coat should still be curly – take off no more than half the original length.

Topline: If your dog’s topline is not fairly level, comb or Afro pick the hair straight up. Scissor the line you want, then wet to reset the curl.

Tail: Take any tuft off end. Taper the hair from full length at the body to very short at the end of the tail. The object is to make the tail look as short and tapered as possible. Be careful that you do not emphasize a low tail set by trimming too much off the top of the base of the tail. You can help disguise a low tail set by lifting the curls at the top base of the tail with an Afro pick.

Front Legs: Clean hair off the rear of the pasterns and the bottoms of the feet. Trim enough around the pads to eliminate any "fuzzy feet" look. Make sure the nails are short. Remove any hair that looks like feathering from the rear of the legs. Do this with the #4 blade or scissors to about 3/8 – ½ inch. Be sure to remove any tufts of hair from the elbows. Disguise elbow calluses with oil or chalk and resolve to get rid of them.

Rear Legs: Clean from the hocks down and do the feet same as the front. Remove any heavy breeching or feathering. If the dog is a little weak in the rear, or does not have the angulation you like, you can comb the hair up and do some "Sculpture work" as on the top-line.

General: Barrel sides or heavy shouldered dogs can have their looks improved by judicious use of the thinning schears. For expert instruction, contact any setter or spaniel hander. High set ears should be trimmed closely across the top, but don’t let bare skin show.

Overall: Take off anything that sticks out where you don’t like it. Hollow spots can be filled in by teasing the hair or by the use of liquid chalk painted in and well brushed out before ring time.

Teeth should be kept scaled. "Taxi-Vet" will help dissolve deposits on the teeth. An abrasive such as smokers toothpaste will help remove stains and give a high polish.

Eyes: Make sure they are clan at ringside. Drops can make the eyes look clearer or brighter temporarily.

Bathing: Comb through the coat to be sure there are no mats, especially behind the ears and between the hind legs. Use a shampoo that does not soften the coat, such as those for terriers or poodles. No cream rinse. Pat with a towel or let the dog shake and drip-dry. Never brush or blow dry -–or your curly will look like a poodle.


 
bath2
 

From Curly-Coated Retriever, a Complete and Reliable handbook.
By Gary and Mary Meek. TFH Publications Inc.

Grooming Your Curly-Coated Retriever

The Curly’s coat is truly wash and wear. The hair on a correctly coated Curly will not grow longer than a couple of inches, and the curls will continue to wind around as a ram’s horn does. A dog with looser curls will look shaggier if left ungroomed. Even so, his coat will only get so long. It will seem longer, however, because as the curl grows out it tends to loosen instead of getting tighter.

The Curly’s coat should never be brushed or combed. This tends to stretch and frizz the coat. Because this is a single-coated breed, the Curly does not shed heavily year round, but he does regularly shed some as a natural growth process of hair. Spring is the time that all Curlies shed heavily and intact bitches shed after each season.

Regular bathing will help keep normal coat drop under control and your Curly companion smelling and feeling good. People with allergies should keep their Curly clean, as dust and pollens trapped in the coat are the very things to which their owners are sensitive. Curlies that are only bathed a few times a year tend to feel oily as the coat gets dirty, and dad hair and dirt accumulate in the coat.

A normal bathing routine would include the following: running through the coat with an undercoat rake before the bath; bathing with a pet shampoo and working the shampoo into the coat using a massaging action with your fingers to help loosen and bring the dead coat to the surface; a thorough rinsing and pat down with a towel; and a good shake or two by the dog and off to drip dry.

Curlies that are shown in conformation are trimmed to neaten up the dog’s outline. The excess hair on the back of the front and rear legs, between the toes, over the shoulders and the underside of the neck, chest, and stomach should be trimmed down. Unruly curls sticking out on the body may be nipped back to be even with the rest of the body coat. The flagging on the tail is trimmed off, leaving the tail an even length all over with a slight taper to the end. The ears can get quite shaggy as the curl is usually looser and should be shortened all over, and the edges of the ear trimmed even with the ear leathers. The overall length of the body coat should not be trimmed down. A more open-coated Curly will generally look neater and a bit curlier if the body coat is trimmed shorter a few times a year.

Most hunters do not bathe their curlies during hunting season so that the dead hair accumulation remains in the coat for more protection in the field. It is said that a well-coated curly can be hunted and shown at the same time, and the lack of dead coat does not hinder the dogs in the field. If you want to clean your companion during hunting season, do so.

Nails should be trimmed on a regular basis because the quick, or vein in the nail, grows as fast as the nail on most Curlies. If left untrimmed for even a few weeks, the nails will have grown too long and will be difficult to trim back to where they belong. A dog with nice, tight feet will need less attention to nail trimming. It is important to trim your puppy’s nails regularly from the very beginning, as most Curlies don’t particularly like having it done and should get used to the process from a very young age.

Ears should be wiped out with an ear cleaner or alcohol on a cotton ball regularly to keep excess was under control. If your dog is swimming a lot, and especially during hunting season, the ears should be cleaned on a daily basis.

Just a reminder to hunters: All dogs should be checked for debris in the coat and ears after each hunt, and you should also check for cuts or abrasions on the body, ears, and feet so that they can be treated immediately Curlies do not tend to fuss over minor injuries, so be vigilant and catch them before they can get infected or affect your dog’s ability to hunt on another day.

 

 

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