Skye Terrier Club of America
Care and Grooming of the Skye Terrier
The first thing to remember about Skye Terriers is that they are "big" small dogs. In other words, they are a big dogs on short legs. Anyone checking their teeth or the size of their head will notice this immediately.
A person also learns this very quickly as they reach down to pet their grown Skye only to have him jump up and hit them in the nose. A full grown Skye will reach thigh high or higher, depending on one's height, when they stand up on their hind legs.
Though they have an extremely long and luxurious double coat, it is a hearty coat and can be easily maintained with a brushing once a week. How often they need to be bathed depends on where they live. If their home is in a city, where they have to be walked in the streets, they may require more bathing than if they live in the country.
A Skye's coat must be kept groomed, or it will mat, causing discomfort, encouraging flea and tick infestation, and painful skin disorders. Grooming both a pet or a show dog requires the same amount of coat care. No scissoring is needed on the Skye's coat. Nails must be kept trimmed, ears cleaned and teeth checked for tartar.
When bathing a Skye many different products can be used, but care should be taken not to scrub the coat. To keep a nice flowing healthy coat, it is best to squeeze or pull the shampoo through the coat. This will cause much less breakage. Some breeders even dilute the shampoo so that it is very liquid and will pour though the coat. After rinsing, a conditioner may be used in much the same way.
The coat can then either be brushed and combed through while drying, or it can be left to dry naturally and then brushed out. If choosing the latter, there should be few if any matts in the Skye's coat to begin with. Most owners will choose to brush and comb them as they dry, however, there are some coat textures that are much easier to brush out when they are dry, again, provided the skye's coat is not matted.
It is best to use long toothed combs and pin brushes with long pins to work the Skye coat. They will allow one to get through the heavy coat and remove all the mats.