His double coat (hard top coat and soft undercoat) protects the Westie from cold and rain. The Westie does practically not shed. The hard top coat dies off in certain intervals and remains dead in the skin if it is not plucked out (trimmed) regularly. This does not hurt the dog, if it is done professionally.
"Trimming" therefore means that dead hair is removed by hand with a light pull.
Plucked and not clipped!
This is what a Westie in typical trimming looks like, and this is how we love the breed! The hair is straight, harsh and thick. It forms a natural protection against cold, heat and rain or snow. The first trimming should already be done at the breeder. Depending on the hair growth the Westie should then be trimmed regularly every 2 to 3 months.
A clipped Westie looks like this:
Not only does it lack the typical appearance of the breed; clipping causes the dead hair to get stuck in the skin, and there is a risk of skin irritation. The coat loses its harsh structure and becomes curly and soft.
A Westie should never look like this:
This poor guy has not been brushed or trimmed for months, he can hardly see out of his coat. It's cruelty to animals to let a dog run wild like that.
To prevent the coat from matting, the dog must be brushed regularly with a terrier brush and combed out well once a week.