How to Brush a Wire Haired Dog

Medium
15 - 30 Minutes
1 Week

Introduction

Wire haired dogs come with a rough-and-tumble look. These dogs tend to look scruffy and may often be mistaken for dirty if they're not cared for and groomed well. Brushing through your dog’s wiry hair will help to keep his coat clean, not too oily, not too dry, and well cared for. 

Each time you brush through your wiry-haired dog’s fur, you spread the natural oils on his skin throughout his fur, which gives him a sheen instead of having the dry, wiry appearance. Wire-haired dogs will also have dry skin to go with their dry-looking fur. Be cautious as you brush your wire-haired dog not to scratch him and create dry skin or sensitive irritations. Be sure to always choose the right grooming tools when brushing your wire-haired dog. Some brushes will do really well with the fur but not as well with his skin, while other brushes are gentle on the skin but offer no help with the dry, wiry fur on your dog

Dog's Perspective

Your wire haired dog may or may not be used to regular grooming or brushing sessions. If he's not, he might be a little apprehensive about sitting still for a long time to do the brushing required to get his skin and fur looking great. Your wiry-haired dog may also experience some tangles. Take your first wiry fur grooming session slow, try to keep sessions short, and be sure to offer your dog lots of treats as you work together.

The General Grooming Method

Effective
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Spray
Slicker Brush
Pin Brush
Comb
Step
1
Table top
Put your dog on a tabletop so he is waist level to you and you are in a comfortable position in which to brush his wiry coat.
Step
2
Dampen
Use a spray bottle with water or leave-in conditioner to dampen your dog's coat. This will discharge static electricity as well as give your dog's fur a layer of protection while brushing. Brushing your dog's dry fur may cause breakage and additional tangles.
Step
3
Pin brush
Starting with your dog's neck and shoulders, brush with a pin brush using short strokes from his shoulders down his back and sides all the way to his tail. Work your way down your dog's body using short strokes at first to work through any tangles and longer strokes to add a finishing shine.
Step
4
Legs, tail, tummy
Using the same pin brush or a wide tooth comb, brush your wire-haired dog's tail, tummy, and legs. Always work in the direction the fur grows and be cautious of any tangles you come across. A slicker brush or a fine-tooth comb will help remove tangles if you can separate them from the fur and spread them apart with your fingers.
Step
5
Undercoat
If your wire-haired dog has a thick undercoat of softer fur, use a rake to brush through the undercoat with short strokes. This will pull out any loose fur that could cause tangles in the wiry hair on the outer coat.
Step
6
Finishing touches
Use a slicker brush or a wide-tooth comb to add some final finishing touches after your wiry-haired dog has been brushed from head to tail. Be sure you are brushing in the direction the fur grows with long strokes. For your finishing touches, your dog should be tangle free with a sleek, shiny coat by the end of your brushing session.
Step
7
Treat
Always reward your pup with a treat after each brushing session. This makes it easier for your dog to come back and be brushed again as well as keeps him motivated to stay still during grooming.
Recommend grooming method?

The Bottom Start Method

Effective
0 Votes
Spray
Slicker Brush
Pin Brush
Comb
Step
1
Rear end
Because of the static that builds in your wire-haired dog, consider starting at the bottom of your dog and working your way up.
Step
2
Static spray
Spray a small amount of static spray on the rear end of your dog. Be careful not to spray any areas except for his fur.
Step
3
Brush
Use a pin brush or slicker brush and brush with short strokes in small areas around your dog's rear end and down his thighs and back legs. Always brush in the direction the fur grows, so from top to bottom from the backend in small sections towards the tail.
Step
4
Midsection
Repeat these steps on your dog's midsection using a slicker brush or a pin brush. Pick a small area near the middle of his back and brush in short strokes towards his tail and down along his sides towards his stomach.
Step
5
Tail
If your dog has a wiry tail with longer fur, support his tail with one hand, spray anti-static spray, then brush out his fur with a wide-tooth comb or a pin brush from the base of the tail to the tip of the tail. For finishing touches on the tail, you can use a finer tooth comb with longer strokes as long as there are no tangles.
Step
6
Neck and shoulders
Again, in small sections, spray some anti-static spray around your dog's neck and shoulders and, with a pin brush or a slicker brush, use short strokes to remove any tangles and smooth the fur along the neck, the back, and shoulders. You may need to lift your dog's chin up to get all of his neck.
Step
7
Stomach
Have your dog lie on one side and gently brush his stomach from his neck all the way down, brushing in the direction the fur grows.
Step
8
Head and face
If your dog has long facial hair, using a fine-tooth comb might be best for this area. If you need to spray anti-static spray, be sure to spray the comb or brush, not directly on your dog's face. Be careful with the areas behind your dog's ears and his beard where food may collect. You may find lots of tangles in these places, and they may need extra attention with a gentle touch.
Recommend grooming method?

Caution & Considerations

  • Your wiry-haired dog may require a bath every week. If his fur is shorter and his skin is healthy, you could give him a bath every couple of months. Keep a close eye on his skin and how his fur looks before deciding on a bath schedule.
  • Your wirehair dog may have a thicker undercoat that is softer than the exterior fur of his outer coat.
  • Wiry haired dogs often have a lot of static. Because of this, it might be best to start at the back end of your dog brushing in the direction the fur grows and then working towards the head.
  • If your dog has a lot of static he's carrying in his fur, spray a liberal amount of anti-static spray before you brush.
  • A pin brush or slicker brush will work well on your wiry-haired dog. You may want to consider following up with a wide tooth comb for finishing touches.
  • Your wiry-haired dog's fur is typically dry. Always start off with a wet or dampened coat to help eliminate static charge and decrease the number of tangles formed in your dog's fur.
  • Tangles on your wiry hair dog might be common behind his ears and on his belly.
  • Wire-haired dogs include Terriers and Schnauzers.

Conclusion

 Your wire-haired dog might look scruffy and scraggly. But make him beautiful again with a soft coat that shows his personality by keeping his fur free of static and tangles with a good brushing every day. Maintaining this wire coat does not make your dog high-maintenance, but it does show him how much you love him.

Success Stories and Grooming Questions

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