The appearance of the Chinese Crested dog is said to be an acquired taste, and a potential owner might possibly be charmed by the breed's unique look and dive headfirst into adopting one without knowing the full story. One of the primary turn-offs for would-be Chinese Crested lovers would be their abnormally demanding grooming regiment.
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The Powderpuff (or just Puff, for short) variety, those covered head to toe in hair, require brushing at least every other day, to maintain their light, soft feel, as well as for the purpose of preventing matting. The breed's hair will not continuously grow, however, it can still grow to unbelievable lengths, and for this reason, as well as tempering the demands of semi-daily grooming, some owners opt for the pony cut look, which is to trim facial and body hair very short, while leaving the tail, crest and feathers at full length. If an owner chooses the pony cut, they should keep in mind that brushing every other day will still be required. The benefit of the cut is simply that there is considerably less hair to brush.
Aside from regular brushing, grooming a Powderpuff has a lot to do with personal aesthetics. While most owners choose to shave the snout, there are also those who prefer to let the facial hair grow to its full length, which leads to the Powderpuff resembling a terrier.
One might jump to the conclusion that the Hairless variety serves as a get out of grooming, free card, but the Hairless are equally demanding of regular brushing and will also require regular skin care. A responsible caretaker of the Hairless Chinese Crested can be expected to bath the dog no less than twice a week, on top of brushing the dog every other day. However, some owners choose to simply bathe their Hairless when they take their morning shower, saving plenty of time and effort, this method is just as acceptable as a regular tub or garden hose bathing. Neglecting to care properly for the dog's skin can lead to unsightly skin conditions which might go unnoticed in a furry dog, but which stand out like a sore thumb on hairless breeds. One should also use common sense and remember that a Hairless is just as susceptible to scrapes, sunburns and dryness as a naked human being. Sunscreen and moisturizing lotion are advised.
A less common variation is the Hairy Hairless. These are not, as one might assume, the result of breeding between a Hairless and a Powderpuff, but rather, an example of a Hairless with, well, an unusual amount of hair. Left ungroomed, they can sometimes grow a long enough coat to pass for a Powderpuff. The Hairy Hairless has the same grooming demands as the aforementioned breeds, although may require more particular trimming, as their coat might not come in as uniformly as a Powderpuffs, likewise, the Hairy Hairless lacks the benefit of requiring little to no trimming.
Finally, something to keep in mind, regardless of variety, is that the Chinese Crested has unusually long toes, and because of this, the quicks of the feet run deeper into the nail than with most breeds. One must be careful not to trim the nails too close, or risk cutting the dog.
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