Grooming a Cavalier King

Grooming a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

95% of the time Molly lives at the farm with my parents. She flies through the fields collecting every bit of dirt, and dust she can. She rolls on the deck, jumps through the snow, and chases birds, and squirrels. She loves living on the farm and takes her duty of being a "farm" dog very seriously.

Being a black and tan who is maturing with age, she is starting to grow an incredible coat. My Mom keeps her tangle free, and as clean as she can, but more often than not she looks exactly what she is; a spoiled princess living on a farm.

When she comes to visit I always cringe looking at her coat. In truth though, it doesn't take long to have it laying flat and looking good when the right tools are used.

  1. The first step is to throw her in the bath! You don't stand a chance of taming that coat without it being completely wet.
  2. Wash, and condition thoroughly. My two favourites are Vellus, and Chris Christensen Spectrum 10. Make sure you dilute the products if instructed. They really do work better that way! If things are really out of control, add a clarifying shampoo into the mix. Clarifying shampoo - shampoo - conditioner.
  3. Use a dryer with a cool setting. Use the pin brush, and cool dryer to smooth and get the coat to lay in the right direction.
  4. Get yourself a drying coat, dog pajamas, or a snug fitting dog t-shirt, I've even pinned a towel in a pinch. When the coat is laying flat, but not entirely dry, use Vellus Satin Cream to keep hair going in the direction you want. Quickly dress dog before they have time to shake, and send everything flying in the wrong direction again.
  5. Clip nails, clean ears, brush teeth - after the drying coat/shirt/pajamas are on.
  6. Dry ears completely. Ears at my house always look like somewhat of a mess. If you want them looking nice for longer than 2 minutes after dry, put on a snood!
Coat tamed for now..

Everyone adapts their own ways for keeping their Cavaliers coats in control. I had a few tips when I was learning, but I mostly used trial, and error on my own. If you do this after every bath the coat should learn to stay flat, and laying in the same direction.

Zo, and Mylee could go visit the farm for a month without a bath and their coat would still be laying flat when they came home. They'd be filthy, but their coat wouldn't be insane, and all over the place. Unless Mom bathed them without a coat.

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