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And if Tom Brady was a dog, he’d be a… morkie?

April 14, 2011

I don’t watch football, and I’m not a fan of the New England Patriots, but thanks to the gossip rags and the Boston Herald (is that redundant?), I do know who Tom Brady is. So when my neighbor’s sister asked me to groom her dog, who her husband named after the famous quarterback, I expected her to bring me something big and broad-shouldered, like a great dane or a mastiff. Instead, she handed me a morkie.

What’s a morkie, you ask? It’s one of those “designer breeds,” also known as a cross between two purebred dogs–in this case, a maltese and yorkshire terrier. I gotta say, though, his parents must have been giants, ’cause this dog is A LOT bigger than four to seven pounds–the ideal weight for both breeds.

I groomed Brady for the first time on New Year’s Day using a blue snap-on comb, which looked fine. But when I got to his face and legs, I kind of choked. And because my New Year’s resolution was to think more positively, I’ll only say that my efforts were admirable.

Hey, if I'd groomed him perfectly the first time, there'd be no room for improvement, right?

I groomed Brady for the second time a few weeks ago. He had four months worth of hair growth, and–thanks to the 80-plus inches of snow that buried Massachusetts this winter–plenty of mats. I brushed out the tangles on his back and clippered the ones around his groin and behind his ears, but the snarls on his legs were too tight, even after trying to tease them out with the high-velocity dryer. I attempted to clipper them with a blue snap-on comb, and then a purple, but I ultimately ended up shaving him down with a 7F blade. His four-year-old (human) sister didn’t even recognize him when he was finished.

Look, Ma, no mats!

Although I was reluctant to take him so short, I actually think he looked better using a 7F than a blue snap-on comb. Both Yorkies and malteses have silky drop coats that are supposed to be kept long. Such coats require a tremendous amount of upkeep, though, which is impractical for the average pet owner. Hence, most people opt for a “teddy bear” style, which is when the body and muzzle are cut very short. In my experience, silky coats look good when they’re long and when they’re short, but when they’re in between, they just look kind of scruffy.

Brady's tongue is approximately the same length as Geena Davis's arm.

As for Brady’s face, I think I showed remarkable improvement, particularly when you compare the job I did in January to the one I did in April. No, it isn’t perfect. But at least the poor guy can see now!

Attempt 2 looks a lot better than Attempt 1, and it isn't just because I upgraded to a better camera.

Speaking of before-and-after photos, here are a couple from school.

This is Zorro, who happens to be the most well-behaved dog in the world. Seriously, he never moved. It was like grooming a stuffed animal.

Best. Shih tzu. Ever.

And here’s Angus, a very charming golden retriever.

Yeah, I can't tell much of a difference, either. But he's a golden retriever. There's not much to do.

Remember my buddy Harrison?

Harrison got flowers this time instead of peace symbols.

And here’s Harrison’s cousin, Dakota, a very sweet sheltie who lost A LOT of undercoat.

Someday I'll write about Abby, the sheltie I had when I was a child. She deserves her own post.

And finally, Bailey, my golden retriever, turned six on April 8. Happy birthday, Boo Boo!

Bailey demonstrates her gay pride.

She doesn't look a day over eight months, does she?

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6 Comments leave one →
  1. April 16, 2011 1:17 pm

    Being that with the “at home grooms” I tend to be the assistant I must say I see a HUGE improvement. First there is the factor of confidence, even if you’d wanted to use the 7f blade in January I’m not sure you would have had the confidence to say… “This is what had to be done for the comfort of the dog and the convenience of the family.” I will also say you are really gifted. When I see you next to a nervous dog, talking to it and helping him or her feel comfortable, I realize you have something others don’t you can really communicate calmness to an animal with you quiet gentle manner. I think this is what makes you a natural with children as well who read tone and body language much more than they hear words.

  2. April 17, 2011 10:22 pm

    Your grooms look great. I wish I had taken pictures when I was in grooming school…maybe not. I didn’t think my grooms looked as nice as yours. Everything was shaved and cage dried when I went to school. 😦 The Morkie looks great. There have been many times when I have started out with a long blade and worked my way down until I found one that would glide between the mat and the skin. Any shop will be very lucky to get you.

    • April 17, 2011 11:04 pm

      Thanks so much, Lisa. Just got back from Intergroom. I had a GREAT time, and will post about it later this week. Right now I’m sorting through all of my loot and trying not to think about how much money I spent!

  3. April 18, 2011 9:26 pm

    Hahaha..been there, done that! Doesn’t it feel like Christmas all over again? Hoping to go next year.

  4. April 19, 2011 5:29 pm

    Room for improvement, or groom for improvement?

  5. December 7, 2011 7:11 am

    WHERE ARE YOU GROOMER GIRL. Your readers wait with bad breath…The fury readers anyway…

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