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They Cut Like “Budda”

I have ten pairs of scissors in my tack box, but I always pick up the same one. The long search for the “perfect” pair of scissors is always very personal. They are either too long, too short, too heavy, too curved, not curved enough . . .you get the idea. Once you find the scissors, your next worry is to find someone you trust to maintain or hone that cutting edge. Finding and maintaining the perfect pair of scissors for a person who grooms Kerries is a constant chore.

Yes, Kerry owners are fussy about their scissors and knowing that, a good friend and the web designer of the USKBTC website, sent me a wonderful article she found in the New York Times. “Finding (or Honing) the Cutting Edge” by Joyce Cohen discusses a variety of scissors /shears and sharpening /honing services.

According to Ms. Cohen’s research, the best haircutting shears come form Japan or Germany. There are two types of edges: razor-sharp convex edge, usually found on Japanese shears and the beveled edge with tiny serrations that grip the hair before the blades snip it found on German shears. According to Mel Kalichman, owner of Shear World International (, “Good shears will work better and last longer, and can be repaired properly if they get dull or damaged.” The author of the article owned a pair of “Burman Diamond Ice Stainless” made in Solingen, Germany, that she wanted to sharpen. She called Burmax and discovered they sell for under $50. The president of the company said, a hairdresser would throw them away and get another pair. So much for cheap scissors!

In the author’s search for a sharpening service, she discovered some information that might be of interest to you as well. – lists sharpeners nationwide who use the Rapid Edge sharpening machine and have taken the $16,000 Rapid Edge course. – has high quality Japanese haircutting shears and a $25, plus return service, sharpening service. – full range of scissor prices, $20 sharpening, plus $6 charge for return shipping. – full range of scissors – specializes in sharpening with sales as a sideline, charges $30 a pair for sharpening. – specializes in sharpening at $20 to $30 a pair. The owner, Mr. Kevin Sutyak, also participates in the annual competition of the National Scissors Sharpeners Guild – Sit down for this one . . .Hikari scissors sell from $249 to $695. Hikari sharpens its own brand for $35 and other brands for $40 a pair. Return shipping is included. This company will also sharpen $40 to $50 scissors and they say they come out better than new. I am not sure why you would spend $40 to sharpen a $40 pair of scissors.

shearintegrity – charges $20 for Japanese shears and $7.50 for German shears, plus $7.50 for shipping.

Maintaining that hot-knife-through-butter feel as you trim your dog is not easy, but once you have it, you don’t want to lose it. Now if I can just stop carrying around all the other scissors I never use!

Carol Kearney
Heritage Kerries


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