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What is the difference between clipping and handstripping?

Updated: Feb 26

Hand-stripping is a type of grooming method that dog owners use to remove excess hair from their dog’s coat.


The most common method of dog grooming is clipping – this method involves the use of a pair of electric clippers which cut or shave the top layer of hair on a dog’s coat. The difference between clipping and hand-stripping is that not only is hand-stripping done by hand, but it removes coat from the root (not just the top layer) so a new coat is able to grow in.


Each time you clip a dog’s coat instead of hand stripping, you are just taking off the top layer of dead fur rather than removing it from the roots – as a result, the coat may become duller in texture and colour with each clipping.


Which breeds require Handstripping?


When it comes to hand stripping, it is more about the type of coat than the breed of dog. Of course, certain dog breeds have certain types of coats, so you can identify some breeds that require hand stripping based on this fact alone.


The type of coat that requires hand stripping produces two types of hair – the undercoat is soft and dense while the top coat is longer and wiry in texture. The process of hand-stripping involves removing the dead hairs from the top coat by pulling them out from the roots rather than simply trimming them down. By removing the hairs entirely you will be creating room for the new coat to grow in.


Dogs with wiry coats go through a specific growing cycle in which the hair becomes thicker and darker as it grows – if you do not remove the dead hair from the top coat it will have a negative impact on the overall appearance of the coat.

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