Mini Poodle in a Miami Trim

The Miami trim can be a great option for clients who want to give their dogs a low-maintenance coat, while maintaining the classic Poodle look.


Michael is a 12-year-old white Mini Poodle that has bad skin problems.  The following cut keeps him short, so he can get medicated baths on a regular basis without a high-maintenance coat.  In our shop, we call it the Miami trim, but I have heard it referred to as the bikini trim as well. 

A variety of blade lengths can be used for this trim; pick one that best suits the pet and owners situation. For this article, Michael was groomed during the peak of summer, so I chose a short length on his body. 




Step 1: Brush
Quickly brush through the ears, tail and pom-poms. If the dog is very overgrown, do a rough clip so you end up with less to dry.


Step 2: Nails & Ears
Cut the nails, and pluck and clean the ears. Michael has his ears taken care of by a veterinarian.


Step 3: Bathe
Bathe the dog. I give Michael a medicated bath, where he soaks for 15 minutes, and then I use a remoisterizer on his coat.


Step 4: Force Dry
Force dry the coat until it is about 90 percent dry.


Step 5: Brush & Dry
Using a stand dryer and slicker brush, methodically move through the coat, drying, straightening and removing any tangles.


Step 6: Sanitary Areas
Using a #10 blade, clip the sanitary areas.


Step 7: Clip Feet
Using a #30 blade, shave the feet.  A #10, 15 or 40 can also be used, depending on the dog’s sensitivity. Start by clipping the pads (the large V), taking as much hair off the toes from the bottom as possible. Clip the top of the foot, spreading the toes to expose and stretch the webbing. Use the corner of the blade to clip between the toes. The foot is clipped to the ankle joint—you can feel the two bones on either side of the foot.


Step 8: Clip Face
Using a #10 blade against the grain, shave the dog’s face clean. Work from the ear canal to the outside corner of the eye. Then, working from the inner corners of the eyes, clip the entire muzzle, paying close attention to the lips. From the ear canal, shape a “V” on the neck. The point of the “V” should be about two fingers above the breast bone.


Step 9: Clip Tail
Clip the tail with a #10 blade against the grain.  Shave one-third of the base of the tail.  I like to do a “V” shape where the tail meets the body.  Michael has an undocked tail, but I still do a pom-pom on the end.


Step 10: Clip Body
Using a #7 fine blade, shave the entire body, starting from the back of the neck. The bracelets should be set by looking at the back leg. Find the top of the hock and draw an imaginary line straight across to the front leg; that is where the bracelet starts. Do not clip down the legs too far. 


Step 11: Leg Pom-Poms
Comb the bracelet hair down toward the foot, then pick up the foot, holding the hair down. This will help start the pom-pom shape. Scissor the hair hanging over the shaved part of the foot.  Comb the hair up and out, then trim the top of the pom-pom. 

On Toy Poodles, the pom-poms tend to be more of a ball shape, while Mini and Standard Poodles have more of an oval shape pom-pom. Starting from the bottom of the pom-pom, scissor upwards to make a round shape. Repeat on all the other legs, trying to keep the size and shape uniform.


Step 12: Tail Pom-Pom
Comb all of the hair toward the tip of the tail and twist the hair.  Cut the tip of the hair off, making sure it is only hair you are cutting. This will start the shape of the pom-pom. Hold the tail up and comb the hair down toward the body and trim along the clipper line. Still holding the tail up, comb out the tail and shape the pom-pom in an oval shape from the body side to the tip of the tail. Edge the “V” at the base of the tail with shears.


Step 13: Topknot
Comb the hair above the eyes forward and trim a visor. Trim a straight line from the outside corner of the eye to the ear. Continue that line over the ear. Comb all the hair from the top of the head to one side and scissor the hair hanging over the line set from the eye to ear. Repeat on the other side of the head. Starting from the front, comb the hair up and out toward the rear of the head, scissor the top of the head round and blend into the back of the neck. Edge the clipper line of the “V” on the throat.


Step 14: Trim Ears
Trim the ends of the ears into a bell shape.




Professional groomer Anne Francis is a grooming competitor and speaker. She works at The Village Groomer in Walpole, Mass.

Is there a breed or cut that you’d like to see featured in the Grooming Table? Send your suggestions to jboncy@petbusiness.com.

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