The Parson Russell terrier is a small, jovial dog that comes in two coat types: smooth-haired and wire-haired. Both types need routine grooming to stay clean, but the wiry version of this cheerful breed requires special attention to keep their coat harsh and stiff.
Set your dog on a grooming table or tall counter, and brush him with a coat rake at least once a week. These special brushes are made with wide metal teeth designed to pull dead hair from the coat without disrupting the hair’s wiry texture.
Pluck long hairs from the coat with your fingers. Pinch the hair between your first finger and thumb, and pull up quickly to remove the hair. Wire-haired Parson Russell terriers are known for their stiff, bristle-coats, and pulling the long, straggly hairs prevent the coat from feeling soft and smooth.
Place a cotton ball inside the base of each ear. This acts as a barrier to keep water out of the ear canal and prevent uncomfortable ear infections.
Move your dog to the sink or bathtub, and soak him from nose to tail with clean, warm water. Spread a little dog shampoo on your palms and rub it into the dog’s coat. Scrub your hands vigorously over the dog to work the soap through the wiry hair down to the skin, and rinse with fresh water. Remove the cotton from his ears after he is completely rinsed.
Lift the dog out of the tub, and dry him with a fluffy towel, rubbing it back and forth over him to remove as much water as possible. Brush the dog with the coat rake as he dries to restore the wiry texture of the coat.
Hold the dog’s foot gently in your hand, and snip the ends of his toenails with a pair of sharp toenail clippers. Trim just a little at a time to avoid cutting the quick; stop cutting when you see a little pink line pop up in the cut section of the toenail.
Brush the dog’s teeth weekly to prevent gum disease and tooth loss. Parson Russell terriers are prone to dental problems, and frequent brushing will keep these issues at bay.
- If you’re uncomfortable plucking your dog’s coat, take him to a groomer for a professional coat stripping. The groomer uses a special comb to strip away sections of hair to keep the coat stiff and wiry.
Louise Lawson has been a published author and editor for more than 10 years. Lawson specializes in pet and food-related articles, utilizing her 15 years as a sous chef and as a dog breeder, handler and trainer to produce pieces for online and print publications.