Wheaten terriers' coats are comprised of continuously growing hair, rather than fur. The benefit is that they do not shed and are considered non-allergenic. However, their long, silky hair becomes tangled and mats easily, requiring daily brush-outs and much more frequent baths than the typical dog's coat.
Brush or comb out the wheaten's coat prior to bathing to remove any tangles or mats. Using a medium-toothed comb, start at the back of the head and move down the spine and both sides of his body before combing the underbelly, tail and legs.
Run several inches of warm water in the bathing tub, and prepare all the bathing supplies—shampoo, conditioner, towels—before leading your Wheaten into the bathing area, which should have a door that can close. If he is fearful of the sound of running water, this will eliminate a stress.
Lead your wheaten into the tub. Wet down his fur with a handheld sprayer or cups of warm water until his coat is saturated.
Apply a quarter-sized amount of dog shampoo to your wheaten's coat and lather him up, starting with the back of his head and working down as you did when you brushed him. Add more shampoo as necessary.
Rinse your dog's coat with warm water until it runs clear. Avoid leaving shampoo residue, as this could make his skin itchy. Push excess water out of his coat by pressing your hands on his back and moving down each side to "wring" the fur.
Apply a coat conditioner that keeps your wheaten's hair silky and helps eliminate tangles and mats.
Check your wheaten's ears. Remove any hairs growing inside with a pair of tweezers. Clean the ear with a dog ear wash to remove debris and built-up wax.
Dry your wheaten's coat. You can towel him dry or use a blow dryer on low heat to remove most of the moisture, or take him for a long walk to air-dry.
- Bathe your wheaten terrier at least every two months; every other week is recommended.
- Keep a leash on your wheaten if he is difficult to control during baths.
Lori Lapierre holds a Bachelor of Arts and Science in public relations/communications. For 17 years, she worked for a Fortune 500 company before purchasing a business and starting a family. She is a regular freelancer for "Living Light News," an award-winning national publication. Her past writing experience includes school news reporting, church drama, in-house business articles and a self-published mystery, "Duty Free Murder."