Westie Haircuts

The West Highland White Terrier has delighted and turned quite a few heads with their adorable, friendly personality and, of course, their beautiful white coat. This short-legged breed has a hypoallergenic double coat consisting of a wiry, coarse top coat and a soft, dense undercoat.

As small as they are, they do require some degree of maintenance to keep their coat at a nice, short length and free of matting. Aside from regular brushing several times a week, they require regular visits to the groomer to keep their coat in tip-top shape and for some hair styling like the summer cut look.

Below is a list of some popular hairstyles that you can rely upon to keep your Westie looking good for everyone to admire.

6. The Show Cut

Image from Instagram:@vinimollo

This is the cut most preferred for conformity in dog shows. The coat should be kept straight with a coarse texture with little to no signs of softness and fluffiness, which can only be achieved through hand stripping or plucking.

The hair in the head is shaped round, while the body coat is maintained at around 2 inches long. The coat around the neck and shoulders can be kept short and should blend nicely with the longer hairs on the legs and tummy.

5. The Westie Cut

Image from Instagram:@westiemoments

Resembling nearly similar in appearance to the Show Cut, the Westie Cut can be done by using a clipper instead of hand stripping. The overall look is the same, keeping the hair around the head rounded with the length at the neck and shoulders trimmed short while those at the stomach and legs are kept longer.

What can set this apart from the Show Cut is that it can exhibit some curliness and fluffiness since the coat will be finer and lose its natural wiry texture.

4. The Puppy Cut

Image from Instagram:@westiemoments

This is the cut most common among Westies that are kept just as a house pet. The length of the body hair is trimmed in equal lengths between 1 to 1.5 inches, making it easier to maintain and lessen the matting and tangling.

The hair around the face can be shaped round or kept longer, while the fur around the mouth and under the eyes can be trimmed to lessen staining, which is common among white dogs.

3. The Summer Cut

Image from Instagram:@westie_dogs_world

Perfect for those warmer months, the Summer Cut keeps the body coat length at a mere quarter to a half inch throughout. The hair around the face and ears can be kept long, short, or trimmed round to whichever your preference is that could bring out the personality of your Westie.

This style gives your Westie a clean and neat look and is ideal for owners that do not have the time to regularly brush their dog.

2. The Natural Style

Image from Instagram:@umetin

This style involves no hand stripping or clipping but just regular daily brushing. The coat is left to grow by itself with only some minimal trim around the eyes and mouth to keep it clean and neat. 

This style, however, involves regular daily brushing, and not just 2 to 3 times weekly. Westies have thick, double coats that can quickly form mats if not brushed properly, checking especially around the stomach, legs, and ears where tangling typically forms.

1. The Clipped Style

Image from Instagram:@lunarose_thewestie

If there is excessive matting in the coat, it may be necessary to shave down your Westie to the skin. Shaving a Westie would result in a more wavy, softer coat when it grows back, but it also may appear patchy and unappealing if not properly followed up with touch-ups.

Shaving will make the undercoat grow faster and may crowd out the slow-growing hard overcoat resulting in a change of texture of the overall coat.

How Should Westies Be Cut? There are two methods for cutting and grooming a Westie. One is through hand stripping, and the other is through clipping. Hand stripping involves plucking the dead outer guard hairs to make room for more hair growth. Clipping is when a clipper with a blade is used to cut the hair short.

Do Westies Need To Be Stripped? Yes, if your Westie is a show dog, then it is recommended that they be hand-stripped. Hand-stripping makes the coat more coarse and wiry, which is what the judges usually look for. Clipping, on the other hand, makes the coat more wavy and silkier, which is great if you are keeping your Westie simply as a pet.

How Often Does A Westie Need A Haircut? Adult Westies should be clipped every 4 to 6 weeks. Anything longer than this would make it easier for excess oil and dirt to accumulate on the hair resulting in matting. A Westieโ€™s hair should be kept considerably short, and ideally, 2 inches short on the body and a bit shorter around the neck.

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Pete Decker