As the full name of the wheaten terrier breed is the soft-coated wheaten terrier, you might get an idea of the breed’s defining characteristic. Your pal’s coat needs a fair bit of care, however, if he is not to become a "matted" wheaten terrier.
Brush your wheaten terrier daily. Go over his entire body, and don’t forget the legs, tail and face. Make sure you push the brush into the thick undercoat. Use the comb as needed to pick out tangles in the outer coat. It might also be easier to comb rather than brush around his face.
Run the comb through his entire coat to check that you have not missed any mats.
Spray any mats with a de-matting or conditioning spray. Use your fingers, the slicker brush and the comb to break them up. Exceptionally stubborn mats might need to be removed by a vet, although consistent daily brushing should prevent serious ones from developing at all.
Bathe your buddy about once a month, after the daily brushing and combing session. The shower is the easiest option for medium-sized dogs. Get the water running lukewarm, sit him the cubicle, and wet his fur. Rub a dollop of dog shampoo between your hands, and work it into his coat, avoiding the face. Rinse out completely and repeat with a very generous dollop -- about a handful or more -- of a conditioner specifically formulated for use on dogs. The conditioner is needed to help prevent mats and to keep his coat soft. Take him out of the shower, stand well back, and let him shake. Towel him dry, then use a blow dryer set to a low setting if desired. Comb through his coat once more.
- The Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier Club of America recommends brushing in sections, also known as line brushing. Push a small section back with your spare hand, and brush it back into place one little bit at a time.
- Spraying his entire coat very lightly with the conditioning spray before you start can make grooming easier.
- Don’t cut away stubborn mats yourself -- get your vet or a professional dog groomer to do it for you. A wheaten terrier’s skin is delicate, and you risk injuring your dog.
Judith Willson has been writing since 2009, specializing in environmental and scientific topics. She has written content for school websites and worked for a Glasgow newspaper. Willson has a Master of Arts in English from the University of Aberdeen, Scotland.