Grooming Silkies for showing/ washing head?


Flock Mistress
12 Years
Jan 1, 2008
I was at a show and saw someone brushing, combing and blowdrying their silkie. Some also looked like they had some spray in their hair. Which got me to thinking how do I groom a silkie for a show? And also when washing a silkie do you have to be careful when washing the head because of the way it is shaped. i don't want to damage anything.
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I posted this a few days ago so thought I could put it back at the top.

I am also worried about washing their heads. As far as that goes, with their skulls the way they are do you have to be careful how you wash the heads? Thanks

How many people brush? I saw someone brushing hers at the show.
Try PouletdeCajun -- he's showing at the TX state fair this weekend (so he might be offline for a while, sorry). I'm clueless about showing anything but dogs.
The brushing is to shred the hard feathers, and to remove the excess from pin feathers that have come in (forget what it's called..). The blow drying would be for birds that have either dunked their crests and/or beards in the water, or they got dirty and were rinsed off real quick, so they need to be dried. When you wash their heads, keep them rightside up and point their beaks down, if you turn them upside down, they can drown. Be gentle when washing their heads, silkies have a hole in the top of the skull (and some are vaulted), so you want to be sure to not give them brain damage.
First of all, when you are washing them, the only special precautions you have to take is not to get the shampoo in their eyes and noses. Of course you dont want to drop the bottle of shampoo on their head, but they dont require any special treatment. I generally pour water over their top not from a plastic cup, and pour it really slow so that it doesnt run down the front and into their face. Then I take a few drops of flea & tick shampoo and gently rub it into their top knots with your thumb and index finger. Its really no big deal, after you do it once, you'll be a pro at it.

The spray they were using was probably oil sheen, commonly used in African American hair. Dont use TOO much though because the oil will attract dust and dirt. But a quick lite spray will add shine to the feathers, so they dont appear too dry.

The brushing is to break up the wax around the new feathers underneath, and it also helps "shred" or break up the hard feathers. It adds a little extra Fluff. Use a flea comb that has really close teeth.

My white silkie loves her bath and pampering. The blow dry is her favorite. I don't do it for shows or anything, I just enjoy my birds being clean.

(Though she run right back outside to her little dirt hole under the deck and is yellow again in 24 hours!)
Wow Thanks everyone.! That sounds like I can do it.

Except the brushing may need a bit of a technique. I used to groom dogs and it takes special strokes for different types of hair/problems,,,and lots of different brushes.

And i will be sure to practice the spray Before the first time I show them.
For the white ones you might want to try the bluing shampoo that is used on white dogs. It really brightens up their feathers. When I was in FFA (back before fire was invented), I had to bathe my broilers in bluing water, then blow dry them. The shampoo would have been a lot less of a mess!

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