Finding a Pomeranian Groomer
Look for a certified dog groomer with excellent scissor skills to help your Pomeranian look her best.
Kathy Salzberg, NCMG
Q. How do I find a groomer with breed-specific training in my area? I have a Pom Pom and he doesn’t have the same hair cut as the show Poms and I want him to have one.
A. I assume you are referring to your Pomeranian. The nickname fits because these little canine fluffballs do indeed resemble a pompom. Spunky, animated and full of personality, this compact bundle of love is an active toy breed with an alert character and a wise little fox-like face.
Sporting a downy undercoat which allows his profuse harsh-textured outer coat to stand off from his body, this tiniest version of the Northern breed dogs has erect ears and a plumed tail carried up over his back, hallmarks of this type, which includes the much larger Samoyed, Husky, Akita and Chow Chow.
With most Pomeranians weighing in at three to seven pounds, it’s hard to believe these perky little characters were bred down from spitz dogs, sled pullers and herders weighing 30 pounds or more that originated in Iceland and Lapland. Their name derives from the historical region of Pomerania, now shared by Germany and Poland, where the breed was developed.
When the Pomeranian is groomed for the show ring, very little trimming is done. It is simply and subtly sculpted with scissors for neatness and a clean outline. To produce the ideal effect, you must start with the ideal dog, a Pomeranian of the proper size with a coat that flows abundantly from the neck, shoulders and chest, forming a copious frill, its pants and rear also trimmed full and round. The head and leg coat is tightly packed, shorter in length than that of the body. The dog’s forelegs are well-feathered as are its thighs and hind legs to the hocks. Completing this rounded look is the tail carried proudly over its back, profusely covered with long, harsh, spreading straight hair.
The glistening coat should look light and airy, bouncing and floating as the dog moves with its dainty gait. A Pomeranian like this is the product of generations of careful breeding. Its show coat takes lots of extra brushing, combing and conditioning to maintain.
Of course, not all Pomeranians are show prospects and not all owners wish to keep their dogs in full coat. Many Pom-owning clients like a scissor-trimmed puppy cut on their pets, cutting down on their home maintenance chores but still making the dog look fluffy and adorable. Our groomers accomplish this by using a snap-on blade comb that will leave the coat 1” to 2” in length, blow-drying and touching up with shears after the bath. A groomer who can accomplish this look must be an expert in scissor work who will leave the coat with a velvety even finish, free of chop marks from clippers or scissors. On occasion, we will take the coat down much shorter with the clippers, if the owner requests it or if the coat is too matted to brush out.
Look for a certified master groomer and/or one who has won awards in industry grooming competitions, held nationally and regionally. You could also check the website www.findagroomer.com, a link on the comprehensive groomers’ website PetGroomer.com. The National Dog Groomers Association of America also offers a link to help locate groomers on their website, www.nationaldoggroomers.com.
Whether show or pet quality, all Pomeranians require regular brushing to keep mats from forming. Even if carefully removed with a dematting tool, cutting them out will thin your Pomeranian’s coat. Because these little beauties are notoriously babied and pampered by their loving owners, most do not like to be brushed so you need to convince them early on that grooming will be part of their normal routine.
As this is a double-coated breed with a harsh textured topcoat, I recommend using a low-sudsing shampoo on your Pomeranian, heavily diluting the conditioner used in the final rinse so you won’t weigh the coat down.
Good luck in your search!
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