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Old 02-07-2012, 07:54 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Shaping Puppy Cut? (with photos)

I have never done show cuts before and I'm not that good at scissoring. I am trying to shape and grow my mpoo puppy into an AKC puppy cut. He is 4 months old now, the AKC show I am interested entering in is in 3 months.

***Please forgive the background mess, we are remodeling our kitchen!***


Puppy Cut Hind Legs by tortoise11, on Flickr

I don't like the really angled and box-y butts in some of the photos I've seen online of winning puppies. I don't know if my interpretation is OK?

My puppy doesn't have much neck hair. Can I adjust for that by shortening everything else?
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Old 02-07-2012, 08:09 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by tortoise View Post
I have never done show cuts before and I'm not that good at scissoring. I am trying to shape and grow my mpoo puppy into an AKC puppy cut. He is 4 months old now, the AKC show I am interested entering in is in 3 months.

***Please forgive the background mess, we are remodeling our kitchen!***


Puppy Cut Hind Legs by tortoise11, on Flickr

I don't like the really angled and box-y butts in some of the photos I've seen online of winning puppies. I don't know if my interpretation is OK?

My puppy doesn't have much neck hair. Can I adjust for that by shortening everything else?
What a cutie!! I'm not an expert on the show trims, so take everything I say with a grain of salt, but IMO you need to take his butt and back leg angles shorter. Probably quite a bit shorter, actually. The angles I've been told to follow are: 30 degrees along the pelvis bones, 60 degrees from the point of rump to the bend in the stifle, and then 30 degrees from the bend in the stifle to the hock. I'll let other people who are more knowledgable tell you more.
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Old 02-07-2012, 09:34 PM   #3 (permalink)
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If you want to show AKC and look like you know what you're doing/have a legitimate chance at winning you will need to tighten up this trim quite a bit. The boxy rears that you are talking about are done to show off the poodle's angulation. Judges will be used to seeing this and I would imagine would not look closely at a dog that is not in proper puppy show trim.

You want to scissor the rear at a 30 degree angle (the pelvis area) and then scissor straight down the back of the thigh very, very close to the leg, stopping when you get to the place where the back leg bends when you lift it. Do not touch hock hair.

Then, go back and scissor the topline level. The crest of long neck hair will begin in the visual midsection of the dog once you have tightened up both the front of the dog and the rear of the dog.
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Old 02-07-2012, 10:21 PM   #4 (permalink)
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The chest should be scissored(could be clipped) so that it is at the same height as the elbows. The back of the leg from the pin bone to the bend should be shaved short possibly 1/4in, not sure for a mini puppy. Be sure to not cut into the hair on the side of the leg if your using clippers (I held the hair down and away). It looks like for minis the top line is scissored at an angle from the neck hair to the pin bone(with boxy angle).

From these points the coat is blended, and you can do what you want with the area by the tail though a shelf is usually created by scissoring the hair but you could probably round it off.

I practiced this cut while Jaden was a puppy with the advice of his breeder.

This is what he might look like, it's hard to see his structure
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Old 02-08-2012, 03:39 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Oh my gosh!!! What a cutie! Is that a little TK?

I'm no expert, so I can't give any advice, except to say that I think he looks wonderful and I look forward to hearing the comments and seeing your results. My mpoo will be 4 months on Friday and getting fluffier by the day. I was wondering how much fluff is too much and when to start to trim? I have never scissored and I'm a bit nervous, but I really want to learn. Is the whole cut scissored? Do you use a ruler to measure depth of fur?

Best of luck to you!
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Old 02-08-2012, 04:30 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Yes, that's a baby TK. I have to use styling wax and re-set it every day. I'm learning to tease out the "bubble."

Thank you for the instructions and the photoshop picture! I did not realize that the hair would be so short on the back of the leg. Good news is that I haven't cut too short or ruined it (yet).
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Old 02-08-2012, 06:02 AM   #7 (permalink)
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When Quincy had his puppy cut, his bum, at the base of the tail was so short you could nearly see skin. From the pin bone to the hawk is scissored out to almost nothing.
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Old 02-08-2012, 06:05 AM   #8 (permalink)
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He is absolutely adorable!!
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Old 02-08-2012, 05:54 PM   #9 (permalink)
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The shape of his body is going to change A LOT in three months! It's hard to start from here. I agree with what others have said about the rear. At this age, most people showing don't do much except to shape the rear because you're going to have another 1.5+ of growth in 3 months anyway.

One thing I'm seeing though, is that you want to really tighten up the neck area, the parts beside and beneath his shaved throat and under the ears. Leaving it long there makes them look like they have no neck. Just the under side, leave the topknot and crest along the top half alone; young pups at their first show are not expected to have a big huge mane yet.

It might be the way he's standing too (his forelegs are way out front, they should be straight up under him), but he's looking long in the body. Taking it short on the rear like people have said, and tightening up the throat area will really help square him up.
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Old 02-08-2012, 06:21 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I think the longess is from the way he was standing. He was turned enough that some of that fluff is from his far shoulder.

I did some more trimming today. I used Big Sexy Hair Root Pump (mousse) on him and blew him out first. What a difference! He wasn't "stuck together" loke and over-sprayed show dog. But there was enough lift that I could scissor easily. I love the scent.

He looked great - more angled and finished - on the grooming table, but after a few hours of play and free time, not looking so great. And his posture is awful as soon as I move away from him. I don't know how to stack or how to train him to stack.


Second Cut by tortoise11, on Flickr

I have never trimmed on his front/chest. I trimmed a little to bring up the bottom between his legs and right in front of that. I thought I would be leaving all of it to grow into Continental? The hair on his chest is about 3 inches long.

How about looking down? The puppy cut is the only on that I don't have a from-the-top grooming diagram for. My puppy has big "hips" viewed from above. What should it look like?
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