Expert Grooming Article
Expert Grooming Article
The Bichon Frise is a merry and inquisitive little powder puff of a dog has been around in much the same form for hundreds of years traded by the early Spanish sailors around the Mediterranean and taken eventually by Italian sailors to the continent where it found favour amongst the Spanish Infantas and Nobility. Originally known as either the Bichon or Teneriffe, he was finally established in France with the Frise being added to his title in reference to his soft, curly coat. Texture is of utmost importance for this little fellow.
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Requiring a soft and dense undercoat and a coarser outer coat with a curly texture that combines to give a soft springy feel. His whole outline should reflect a rounded appearance from every direction with longer hair on the head, beard, moustache, and tail. For show presentation, this exquisite little dog should be perfectly presented yet retain his natural outline with a slight tuck-up. This is a trimmed breed and a good eye will assist the overall balance of shape and structure.
To enhance the shimmery whiteness in the coat use Plush Puppy Herbal Whitening Shampoo which is a toning shampoo giving a brilliant white overtone and neutralizing unwanted warm tones. Use diluted at 1:5 (1 part shampoo to 5 parts water) for maximum effect and up to 10:1 for mild tone. Herbal Whitening Shampoo is derived from organic sources with Ginseng extracts, protein, and violet tone combined in a concentrated and rich formula. It works brilliantly in reducing yellowing or warm tones in white coats or white area of the coat. Makes white coats gleam and sparkle with a pearly sheen. Will not bleach or lighten.
For extra lift, if that is the main objective, use Plush Puppy Body Building Shampoo at the same dilution. This shampoo gives the appearance of a fuller and thicker coat. It is formulated using organic sources, bolstered by Wheat Protein and Wheat Starch with D-Panthenol and Lichen extract. The absolute answer in dog shampoo for body and lift without flattening or softening the coat.
You can mix the two for both effects. This combination is just Bichon coat magic!
A Bichon ‘must-have’ is Plush Puppy Wonder Blok. Brilliant in helping to maintain a white stain free coat. It’s not a bleach and contains no harmful chemicals but high amounts of naturally sourced vegetable surfactants and glycerin. This product is designed to gently remove unwanted warm or red tones to the coat. Using on a wet coat, gently rub into the areas requiring whitening or brightening. Allow approximately 5-10 minutes, then rinse. For maximum effects repeat, or allow a longer time for this amazing product to work. As with all products take care around eyes.
If your Bichon Frise has a soft coat and needs that added texture, try Plush Puppy Texture + Shampoo. It is formulated to retain and improve coat texture. This shampoo thoroughly yet gently cleanses and deodorises the coat of Terriers and other wire, harsh or coarse coated breeds without softening or compromising texture. It’s ideal for boosting body and coarseness in coats of all colours and coat types. Formulated to be pH controlled, it can create or maintain texture, is low irritant with a subtle apple fragrance and is easy to rinse out. It is full of beneficial and powerful extracts from the Gentian Root, Juniper Fruit, St John’s Wart Leaf, Hay Flower, Lemon Balm Leaf and Arnica Flower that combine to nourish and vitalise the skin. Use diluted up to 1:10 or apply undiluted directly to areas requiring intensive cleansing. Rinse thoroughly.
The face of the Bichon Frise is one that requires care and attention. The perfect product is Plush Puppy Let’s Face It. This is a hypoallergenic sulfate free low foaming shampoo designed just for faces. It’s a nil fragrance, no tear formula with the highest quality Blue Cypress Extracts, Panthenol with Pro Vitamin B and SugaNate. These special ingredients clean, sooth, add moisture, aid healing and have anti-inflammatory benefits. A small golf ball sized amounts directly to the face and eye area allows you to thoroughly clean without causing irritation. Can be used in and around ears also with the same benefits. Its low foaming design allows easy rinsing yet complete cleaning. Best used first and left on whilst using all other shampoos and rinsing off with the final shampoo rinse.
Conditioner is not desirable in a Bichon Frise coat as it softens and flattens. Not what you require in this case. However, some moisturising and hydration is needed even if you are regularly trimming the coat. The solution is Plush Puppy Reviva Coat which is a moisturising disentangling mousse. Simply apply to the hands and work it through the coat. Use also for wrapping the moustache and beard. Reviva Coat is never greasy or too heavy and can be repeatedly applied – rather unique! Good also to use prior to any brushing. Mix a golf ball amount and 1 cup of water in a spray bottleand keep on hand. Truly the solution to this coat where elasticity and moisture is needed but softening and flattening is not wanted.
Another brilliant product for regular grooming of this breed, or using as a Show coat refresher is Plush Puppy OMG. This is a revolutionary grooming spray that lives up to its name. OMG is the perfect product for this coat type. A light spray of OMG and brushing in allows this product to refresh the coat leaving it feeling wonderful. It separates the coat and leaves the most amazing finish to the dog allowing you to scissor and having the entire coat at its fullest. Use the concentrate form at 1:30/40 (1 part OMG to 30-40 parts water). The stronger the mix the stronger their effects. Using OMG can be a one-off at shows or during the drying process after bathing. This is perfect to spray a light mist on a comb when combing at the show or while scissoring. It amazing for regular brushing as it hydrates the coat reducing stress and coat loss. Its active ingredients smooth the cuticle and protect the coat. For this coat type where you still wish to retain texture, use at a higher breakdown. It will still allow you to brush the dog and refresh to coat without over softening. OMG never builds up and never goes stringy. A product that took years to develop using amazing technology for maximum effects. A true necessity for the tool kit. Use O.M.G at the end of the day helps to breakdown the hairspray and reduces that coat stress.
For optimum lift to the head and neck, use Plush Puppy Puffy Dog+. It is a strong non-aerosol dog styling mousse that will add volume. Puffy Dog+ adds hold and fullness while holding the coat in its blow-dried shape. It is totally water-soluble and dries without stickiness. Work well through the coat and blow dry using a Plush Puppy Ultimate Slicker Brush lifting and moving the coat forward against the growth for maximum lift.
Once the coat is fully dry, work through with a Plush Puppy Professional Grooming Comb combing section by section and lifting. These combs are built for absolute ergonomic comfort in various sizes. The lightweight oval shaped spine combining fine and coarse pins made of hardened stainless steel with anodic oxide finish that reduces drag and static to the coat. Perfect for use for this breed of dog.
For coats that may require a “more and fuller look” use Plush Puppy Volumising Spray. This is a ‘Ready to Use’ volumiser for quicker, easier and fuller coat results. Perfect either before blow-drying or used to ‘fluff’ up the coat at the show. Apply a light even spray and brush in until dry, or use a dryer. This is a hair thickener to add volume, not a hair stiffener and not easily detectable. It leaves the coat with a natural fuller look and feel.
Brushes are extremely important the best is the Plush Puppy Ultimate Slicker Brush. This brush is both extremely soft and perfectly separates the coat, yet gentle to the coat and skin. It promises durability and flawless brushed results every time. It is of ergonomic design to lessen strain on the groomer’s hands while at the same time offering maximum brush contact. A soft, flexible rubber air-cushion houses the strong pins. These pins penetrate through the dogs coat without excessive pulling on the hair or scratching the skin. The Ultimate Soft Slicker Brush ensures a gentler, more comfortable brushing experience.
Follow through with more scissoring to sculpture the final shape. For any staining around the eyes, use Plush Puppy Cover Up Cream. Apply using a barely damp sponge lightly, allowing too dry for a few seconds before reapplying and building in layers rather than heavy-handed blobs. Finish with a light application of loose chalk to finish the drying process in damp weather. Can be brushed prior to ring time. As this is a pristine little breed, for ringside emergencies use Plush Puppy Wonder Wash, a no-rinse shampoo that really does foam when sprayed and worked into a lather before toweling off and drying.
For all-over freshening at those 3-day events, use Plush Puppy Powder Puff Regular, a unique cleansing powder that also deodorises leaving a fresh lemon and ginger fragrance. Sprinkle well over the coat and work through with the hands, then preferably blow dry to remove, or brush well if drying facilities unavailable. Although this coat is trimmed constantly, a good treatment should it be required. Plush Puppy Coat Rescue is an intensive moisturising product that adds structure back into damaged hair. Apply by diluting 1 heaped tablespoon to 250ml (8 oz) of water. Mix well and work through the damaged areas of the coat. Leave on as long as possible for maximum benefit but good results can be achieved after 10 minutes. Rinse well and work Reviva Coat through for easy comb through texture.
Adding to the playful tone of this little dog, a light sprinkle of Plush Puppy Pixie Dust applied lightly through the top line, adds hints of glamour and light.
Your Bichon Frise is a cheerful and affectionate little guy. I can just picture him with the pirates and sailors of the Barbary Coast imitating their cheeky and irreverent sense of the merry life at sea – if Johnny Depp’s Jack Sparrow was a dog, he’d be a Bichon! His dark appealing eyes and his jaunty tail lend a devil may care sense to his cockiness and affectionate nature. He is a cheeky little fellow and trimmed well to accentuate the rounded aspects of his outline, the expert will reap the rewards for the efforts with this coat. Moving well and true and handled to perfection, he is a hard competitor. Who can resist that appealing expression and the happy chappy of the show line-up?