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Recused dog, trouble with coat

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Joined: 11 Sep 2006
Posts: 1

PostPosted: 09/12/06, 5:16 pm    Post subject: Recused dog, trouble with coat Reply with quote

We got a 4 year old GWP from the Humane Society about 3 months ago. She is amazing and sweet -- a great addition to our family. She was very neglected by her last family. The Humane Society had to shave her (including her face and ears) almost to skin to get out all the matts and stickers. She was a very funny looking pup when we brought her home. Her fur is growing out, but it is not wiry -- if anything it is baby soft and curly and every sticker or burr gets stuck in her fur. She loves her time off leash running through fields, but I feel so sorry for her when we have to spend an hour removing the stickers from her fur. Is this normal for a GWP to have this much trouble with stickers?

She also looks like a drowned rat if she gets wet. It doesn't appear that she has any undercoat at all -- her belly is almost bare with a few light wisps of fur. Will she get an undercoat? We can have pretty bad winters in Nebraska and I'm a little worried about her getting too cold. (She's only outside with us for play and exercise, but my coat is certainly heavier than hers Smile )

I also don't know how to strip, but I am going to keep reading posts about that.

Thanks for any advice/knowledge any of you can share!
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Joined: 19 Oct 2002
Posts: 491
Location: New Hope PA

PostPosted: 09/12/06, 6:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

When a GWP is shaved, what you will see first is undercoat normally. It takes the guard hairs longer to grow. That is why when you see most pet terriers that have been clippered, they have soft hair. The harsh guard hairs never get a chance to grow out.

You will need to strip out that fluff, and continue to strip it out until the guard hairs get a chance to catch up and take over. It takes time, maybe 6 mos or more to get it back to normal. Of course that is, if the dog has a decent coat to start with. If not, stripping it will only make it better, not worse.

Here is a web site that tells step by step how to strip a wire coated breed. In this case it's a Wire Fox Terrier, but the steps are the same.
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Joined: 04 Sep 2003
Posts: 35
Location: Nebraska

PostPosted: 09/28/06, 8:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Our GWP doesn't have many hairs on his belly either - in fact, pretty darn bare - the good news? We also live in Nebraska and our GWP is fine. He is a house dog, but we do take him out for plenty of exercise in the winter (he still doesn't like the cold).
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Joined: 08 Nov 2002
Posts: 106
Location: Waterloo, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: 10/28/06, 10:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

my 5 yr old girl is a rescue as well....i got her at 7 mos of age and she was over vaccinated by the shelter and lost her gorgeous coat rather quickly after that. she's a black, but definitely a GWP from a high-drive hunting line, and was most definitely started on wings, etc. therefore, she was almost certainly vaccinated as a pup, then revaccinated at the pound.

her coat is softer not wiry, and she has little (in fact NO) undercoat to speak of. it's very very thin and she must wear a hunting vest in the colder weather (up here in canada). i bought my vest from ... the orange/sport/hunting vest that has a light fleece lining. she can wear it spring and fall as well, and in winter it gives her just enough warmth. her belly and under her chest is practically bare as well. could be bad genetics, or - more likely, given everything i've been through with dogs being overvaccinated - she has mild thyroid issues because of the overvaccination and will never have a full coat.

on the bright side, she's awesome to keep clean. most of our hikes (three a week) are through mud and swamp and she gets pretty messy. i can hose her down easily and she's dry in minutes. so really, i'm not complaining.

i'm not one of those whackos that dress up their dogs....however, when extra protection is needed, you simply need to help them along. if you're concerned about the impending winter, i'd suggest investigating some well-fitting coat/jackets/vests. i like the k9topcoat vest because it has "sleeves" on the front legs which prevents the dog from getting hung up on branches and logs and brush. she's quite a driving force through the woods, and after looking at dozens of coats and jackets, the best design i've found for movement and for not getting caught is the one by k9topcoat.

i have photos of her wearing it on my photostream.... if you want to see her in action wearing it. or go right to her photo set: ...and look for the photos of her wearing the vest.


Last edited by Illona on 10/28/06, 10:42 am; edited 1 time in total
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