Grooming a Scottie for the Show Ring

Your Scottie dog will thank you for all your hard work grooming her.
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Keeping your Scottie dog clean, neat and tidy is one thing, but grooming her for the show ring is another. Should you want to compete with your dog, she'll need to adhere to American Kennel Club breed standards. However, with a little bit of elbow grease, you can get your pup ready for the show ring in no time.

Clipping or Stripping

According to AKC breed standards, Scotties should have a longer coat on their legs, underside and beard, and a shorter coat on their back, neck and head that is carefully blended into their longer furnishings. You can either have your dog clipped or hand-stripped to achieve this style. Most Scottie show dogs are hand-stripped as it preserves the natural wiriness of their coats. Clipping can soften the coat, and fur that is too soft is a fault, according to the AKC. Whichever you choose, it should be done by an experienced dog groomer.


If you want to keep your Scottie perfectly groomed for the show ring, you'll need to brush her coat daily. Due to her wiry coat, a pin brush is the best choice for getting out tangles. Be sure to pay attention to her coat under her tummy, between her back legs and behind her elbows, as these areas are particularly likely to become tangled. You should then comb through the rest of her hair, making sure to brush her eyebrows and beard forward so they lie properly.


Your Scottie should have regular baths, but not too frequent. You don't want to remove the natural oils from her coat. Once a month should be sufficient under normal circumstances, but it's advisable to give her a bath the night before a show so her coat is clean and fresh. Make sure to use a specially formulated dog shampoo, as it will be mild on her skin. It's important to fully rinse the shampoo from her coat, as it could irritate her skin and will leave her coat looking dull.

Other Grooming

You dog needs to be in tip-top condition to do well in the show ring, so you'll need to keep on top of all grooming tasks. Make sure your Scottie's nails are trimmed regularly, by a veterinarian or groomer. You also should ensure you clean the insides of her outer ears with mineral oil, clean under her eyes with water on a cotton ball and brush her teeth daily using a doggy toothpaste. As Scottie dogs have large teeth that are set close together, your pup may benefit from a yearly dental scaling done by her vet.