How to find an expert Scottie dog groomer

Roosevelt with shaggy Fala

Bush with coiffed Barney

We’ve dealt with Do-it-yourself Scottish Terrier grooming before, but it’s definitely not for everyone. Some Scottie owners just don’t want to go there, opting instead to turn their dogs over to a groomer. But like hairdressers, not all Scottish Terier groomers are created equal. This article — by Carole Frye Owen on how to find an expert Scottish Terrier groomer — goes straight to the top and interviews Helen Krisko who grooms Barney and Miss Beasley, the first dogs.

When Barney Bush’s puppy coat grew–and grew, the Scottie world worried he’d be another unkempt Fala. The day Barney bounded across the White House lawn in a neat trim, there was a collective sigh of relief.

How did Laura and George Bush discover Barney’s groomer? The story includes a Congressman, the President’s sister, a lobbyist and

Laura Bush’s Chief of Staff. Strictly word-of-mouth.

“I’m honored to groom the “First Dogs,” says Scottie breeder Helen Krisko. “The President and Mrs. Bush seem pleased with what I do. They are so thrilled when they can talk about their dogs, and particularly Barney.”

Krisko is a successful dog show exhibitor. She grooms, trains and shows her own Scotties. She also has a grooming shop that seems more like a beauty parlor in her Bethesda, MD, home. “I book by appointment time. Each dog has my undivided attention,” explains Krisko. “When Barney comes I make sure nobody is scheduled before his arrival, and that nobody will arrive near the time I finish. The atmosphere is relaxing.”

If you think Barney gets special treatment, he’s not alone. In the quest for the perfect Scottish Terrier haircut, Norma and Louis Mitchell of Lubbock, TX, sometimes fly in a groomer from California to give their nine Scotties the perfect “Brillo Pad” look.

There’s no telling the lengths some people will go to, to avoid mistakes like hula skirts, flags on tails, rat tails, gloppy ear tufts, Schnauzer eyebrows, Westie ears, Poodle feet, chopped furnishings and skinned off topcoat.

Read more on Scottie dog haircuts and Scottish Terrier grooming.