The Right Tools for the Job
As they say, the right tools make a job go faster. Whether you’re just brushing and combing every day or learning to scissor or clipper your Wheaten yourself, it helps to know what you need. Most of these grooming supplies can be purchased at stores, at online pet supply houses or mail order. Unless otherwise stated, the medium is typically the best size for a Wheaten.
A metal Greyhound comb is the classic, basic comb. This can be 6-8″ in length, and has both medium and finely spaced teeth. A second comb some find useful is a dematting comb. This is a comb in which the teeth actually swivel and is especially helpful during coat changes. Others prefer dematting combs with widely spaced and long teeth with a heavy back.
Brushes & Slickers
You’ll definitely want a pin brush. This is a brush with metal teeth, no bristles. You’ll also need a slicker. This is a smaller tool with numerous short metal teeth and very helpful for quick brushing and for dematting.
Grooming Table & Arm
Most people find that using a grooming table is easier on them and also valuable in teaching their dog about being groomed. Plus, teaching your dog to stand on a grooming table makes his (and your groomer’s) life easier when they go for a bath and trim. Grooming tables for home use have folding legs and a non-slip top. To these are attached metal “grooming arms” with a “noose” (like a collar). The arms, noose, and an added bandana serve as a third (and fourth!) hand to keep your dog steady.
There are two styles: one is a guillotine with a guard through which you put the dog’s nail when you trim. The other is a scissors type with a guard. If you accidentally nick the quick, styptic powder will stop the bleeding instantly. NEVER trim nails without styptic powder at hand.
Scissors & Shears
You’ll want two different kinds of scissors. Thinning shears have a solid blade on one side and a blade that looks like a comb on the other side. The more teeth, the less hair you’ll take out at once, a good thing for beginners. Look for a 46-tooth thinner. You’ll also need a pair of scissors with regular blades. Everyone has preferences, some like a curved scissor while others like a straight blade. Generally a 6–7″ is a good size. Usually a mid-priced scissor is good for beginners; durable and good quality without being too hard on the pocketbook.
If you are not planning to show your dog and you want to do some grooming yourself, a pair of electric clippers can make the job go more quickly. See Pet Trimming guidelines for more information on the needed blades.