These days I’m always looking for ways to save money. (Duh. Who ISN’T, you say!) Well, our dog hasn’t been to the groomers in … hmm. When was that she last went? All I remember from that visit was the groomer saying, “Maggie was a real brat!” Haven’t gone back to them since. I mean, I recognize that she is willful and does not like to be groomed, especially to have her nails cut, but honestly. to call her a “brat”?
Have you ever heard that phrase, “No bad dogs only bad owners”? Or something like that. Well, it is OUR fault that Maggie doesn’t like getting groomed. She’s not used to it and it scares her and is uncomfortable. Ah, but there are always reasons (er, excuses) for everything, right? Like in our case, we are always wanting to save money and not get her groomed except when absolutely necessary. We bathe her ourselves and all of that (otherwise, pee-euw!) But when it comes to hair cuts,we figure she can go six months easy.
Only for some reason the last several months Maggie has decided to go the way of the Rastas and grow some wicked dreadlocks. We’re talking mega-matting! And once you go down that road, it’s really hard to go back to smooth and silky. We try to brush her, but there is some sort of tipping point with brushing — after a certain amount of mats develop, you’re doomed. One of my former students had big, beautiful dreads but had to get rid of them when she joined the peace corps. She said changing her hair was one of the most unpleasant things she had ever had to do, much worse than anything she faced in Africa for the two years she served there.
Anyway, so today was the day to “fix” Maggie’s fur. She was not amused. But I figured the best way to solve the issue was just to cut off every bit of matted fur. I figured I’d give her what I believe they call a “puppy cut” (short all over rather than the typical Westie cut). That way if there were spots that were REALLY short, it wouldn’t be as obvious.
Here’s what a Westie is supposed to look like…
Well, that’s pretty cute, right? One of the ways in which those dogs are able to look like that, though, is through the development of a stiffish, wirey overcoat that helps them keep this shape and not get matted. For some reason our Magster has still — at three years old — not developed that tough outer coat. She is still as soft as an alpacha.
Which is nice for us when we pet her and all but leads to no end to the matting problems. (Our last Westie had the same problem, by the way — never got the wire coat. Weird coincidence? Our vet has no idea why Maggie is still so soft and fluffy. We met her parents and they have wire coats. Hmmm.) Anyway, today I decided to implement my great money-saving plan and give Magga-muffin a new do.
She hates me.
Who doesn’t hate her hair dresser when she gives you a crappy cut? Who doesn’t blame the one with the shears when we come away with a four week bad hair fiasco?
Honestly, I tried my best, but I REALLY underestimated how much matting there was. Every time I thought I had a leg looking okay and I’d run the brush through it, yank, it caught on yet another mat. Maggie was none too pleased and took to biting the brush after a while. “I understand, Maggums. This sucks.” I didn’t call her a brat. She’s our soft little sweetheart of a Rastafarian.
I know you must wonder what she looks like now. Not sure this picture gives you the full effect of her humiliation….
At least she was willing to go out in public! Our good, brave Maggie-May!
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