Whether you intend to show your Westie, or keep him for a household pet, first key to West Highland Terrier grooming is to start while he is a puppy.
Take your Westie to his first groomer appointment after he has had all of his shots, at approximately 14 weeks. Acclimate your dog to grooming process, and he will grow to accept it as part of his natural routine. If you intend to groom your dog at home, give him his first clipping at around same age.
West Highland Terrier grooming, whether performed at home or by a groomer, should be performed with dog's safety and comfort as first considerations. Be aware of practices used by your groomer, and be sure to remain with your dog until you are convinced that he is safe.
Contact your local Westie Club to find a reputable groomer. If you intend to show your dog, you will want to be sure that your groomer knows what a Westie cut looks like.
It is not unusual for owners to find that their Westie has come home from a grooming looking like a Schnauzer or a Scottish Terrier. If you are uncertain, bring photographs to your first groomer visit.
Although you might think that, after safety, your first consideration is price, how to groom your Westie is your next decision. A show dog must be hand stripped to give dog its Westie look - round head, carrot-shaped tail, and blended skirt.
Hand stripping involves actually pulling hairs. When they grow back, they tend to be straighter and coarser. Many claim that a hand stripped Westie coat sheds dirt, allowing dog to go longer between baths.
Hand stripping is not necessary for a Westie that is kept as a pet, and a regular clipping from your groomer, or at home, is all that your dog needs. A clipped Westie coat will be softer and curlier, and more prone to staining.