A few years back, an unfortunate trend began of dogs wearing panty hose. The Chinese social network, Weibo, may have been the first place that anyone saw a dog wearing black tights (the picture at the link above). The photo was posted by a user named “Ulatang” and within three days, it had gotten over 16,000 comments. It didn’t take long for the idea to be copied – and explode. News outlets from the Huffington Post to ABCNews did pieces on the phenomenon.
Our post title is nothing like that, but it’s a eye-catching way (did someone say click-bait?) to segue into the real topic: Stripping a terrier coat. Whether it’s called hand-stripping, plucking, or rolling the coat, the grooming technique is used to remove old coat so that a fresh coat can replace it. When a terrier is stripped by having its hard textured, wire-hair pulled/plucked out (it’s painless when done properly), it leaves behind soft undercoat to be stripped later. That soft undercoat is affectionately called the dog’s “underwear,” and when one terrier person tells another that they’ve just taken their dog down to its underwear, that is what is meant.
Does it even matter?
Many terrier breeds (and the Miniature Schnauzer) have wiry outer coats with a soft, dense undercoat, and though it’s not actually “broken, ” the wiry coat can also be called a “broken coat.” Hand-stripping helps avoid a shaggy appearance, but it also leaves behind a lovely “hard” textured coat that helps a working terrier do its job by allowing it to stay out in the elements longer. In a drizzle, a soft-coated dog will quickly be drenched to the skin, get cold, shiver, and seek cover.