Show Dog on a grooming table

How to Groom a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever

YEAY! You just came home with your cute, new long haired, double coated Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever (aka Duck Toller, Little River Dog, Toller). 

Duck Toller

And you see on TV, the Dog Shows, and on the internet these beautifully groomed Tollers. But how do you get from your fluffy ears, and grinch feet to a groomed pup? 

Group 2nd Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever

Each dog is a unique individual and each dog requires something different. I can only speak from my own experience. 

The two key things I have found. 


I truly believe it starts with diet. You can search on the internet for how to grow a thick coat; a lush coat; or even create a luxurious coat. The #1 tip, add Omega to your pups diet. What is this tip in essence? The key ingredient to a good coat is your pups diet. 
Simple, fresh ingredients are fundamental to a great diet like Darwin's Pets, Kiwi Kitchens Air-Dried, Tucker's, Just Food for Dogs, or K9-Natural
Kibble - well kibble has it's pros and cons but I have found that it has its time and `place` but doesn't replace good simple fresh ingredients. 
For more info. on diet and coat, see my other blog Allergies, itchiness and yeast! Oh My!


Yep, you heard me right. Weekly bathing.  


Just like the products we use on our own hair (I am speaking to all the girls and long haired gentleman out there) a good shampoo and conditioner does wonders for those locks. 

The key ingredient in products that I have found most essential is Colloidal Silver. This simple product is essentially a wonder product. The next is hydrating conditioners. 

The products that we use include Famous Skin Care for Dogs Growth Shampoo and Conditioner (with colloidal silver), and Chris Christenson Spectrum One products. 



To start the bathing process, I add some soft cotton balls to Rush's ears to ensure that water does not go into his ears.

1. I begin with the Chris Christensen Clean Start Shampoo

I only use this monthly or after hiking/swimming.

2. I utilize the Chris Christensen Happy Eyes Tearless Shampoo for Rush's face, Chris Christenson Spectrum One Shampoo mixed with Famous Skin Care for Dogs Famous Growth Shampoo. After putting the timer on (the the music for Jeopardy), I will rinse with warm water. 

3. I will add Chris Christensen Thick N Thicker to Rush's bloomers, tail, and hair along his belly to add volume and substance to these areas. 

Warning! This stuff fluffs up the hair. Unless you want a cotton ball, do not use  on the whole dog! Lesson Learned!

Duck Toller - Chris Christensen Grooming - Thick N Thicker

4. Add Famous Growth Conditioner mixed with Chris Christensen Spectrum One Conditioner all over Rush. 

Put the timer on and wait. Oh, maybe feed treats while in the tub waiting. 

5. Rinse with warm water. 

Note  - Famous Growth Conditioner takes along time to get entirely out of the coat. 

Remember- Remove the cotton balls from your pups ears. 

6. Get your pup out and towel dry with a soft towel. I recommend the Show Tech Dry Dude towel

7. Spritz some Precious Drop over the coat that has fly-aways.

8. Get the blower out and you are ready to dry. 

TIP - To blow dry a double coat - start at the base of the feet and blow up the legs. Then start at the base of the tail and blow the hair backwards. Once the hair is decently dry, blow the hair in the direction you want it to lay. I will use a soft brush to brush while blowing the hair to get it to lay flat. The same goes for the ears. 

9. Now is the time to trim your pup up. 



For trimming, check out Dallas Drury's grooming video.

Be sure and keep a coat on your pup the day of the show to keep the coat laying flat. 


Your ready to go out and strut your stuff! 

Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever

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