Why Not Shave Your Dog

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There might be a lot of reasons that you are considering shaving your dog. Maybe your furry friend sheds a lot of his coat. The mass amount of hair on your carpets and furniture might tempt you to shave your dog. Perhaps you are concerned with your buddy overheating in the summer heat. Or maybe you feel like shaving him will be easier than contending with all that fur. 

Coat categories

Veterinarians and groomers recommend that you do not shave your dog- especially if he or she is a double-coated dog. There are different types of coats for other breeds. Double-coated dogs are breeds like Pomeranians, German Shepherds, Chows, Samoyeds, etc.

These dogs have a more extended, tougher hair layer that protects them from water, sun, and the elements. They have a softer, fluffier layer near the skin, which keeps them warm, similar to insulation in a house. 

There are other kinds of coats, like wired, corded, curly, and smooth. 

Wirehaired dogs include breeds like the Jack Russel Terriers, Airedales, and Scottish Terriers. 

Corded haired dogs include breeds like Komondors or the Hungarian Puli.

Curly-haired dogs include breeds like Poodles and Bichon Frise.

Smooth haired dogs include breeds like Dachshunds, French Bulldogs, and Beagles. Some of these breeds can have either a single or double coat. 

To Shave or Not to Shave

In coats like wired, corded, curly, and smooth, a good clip at the groomer is recommended to keep their hair from matting. Also, it can keep them cool. However, it is not recommended to shave your dog’s hair down to the skin no matter what kind of coat they have. It is advised to leave the coat at least an inch long to help them to be protected from sunburn and skin cancer. 

There are several reasons why groomers discourage shaving a double-coated dog, especially:

1. You can do permanent damage to the coat. Once a coat is shaven, it will not usually grow back the same. It will usually grow back coarser. This can leave it more susceptible to mats. It also might grow back in patches.

2. You might embarrass your dog. This might sound funny, but when a dog is shaved, they can often show that they are embarrassed by their hair cut. 

3. The double-coat naturally keeps the dogs warm in the winter and cool in the summer. How does it do this? In winter, the overcoat protects from the cold winds, and the inner coat provides insulation and warmth. A double-coated dog will shed the inner layer in the summer, and the outer hair will stay. This allows the air to circulate and keep them cooler. 

4. Shaving a double-coated dog can leave them unprotected from the sun’s rays. This can lead to sunburn, skin cancer, and other skin conditions. 

5. Shaving a double-coated dog will do nothing to reduce the amount of shedding. The fur will still shed, but it will just be shorter hair that comes out. 

How to maintain your dog’s coat?

One recommendation in maintaining your dog’s coat is to take them to the groomers regularly. Double-coated dogs will get a shampoo and a brush, and the groomer can help you maintain healthy fur. They will also do things like clip nails and clean ears. It is like a spa day for your buddy. Dogs with other coats might get a trim to help control mats and keep their fur healthy and clean. Groomers say that it is essential that you understand why not shave your dog. Some groomers might be less experienced and try to shave your buddy. 

Suppose regular visits to the groomer are too expensive for you. There are tools that you can get to do it yourself at home. There are several brushes on the market to help those with double-coated dogs.

The Furminator is a popular choice. There is also a Zoom Groom. There are metal combs, slicker brushes, mat combs, pin combs, and so many others. 

There are several clippers on the market for those who will also trim their wire, corded, curly, or smooth-coated dogs. 

The recommendation is that you find one that does not make a lot of noise because the buzzing tends to make your buddy nervous, and they might not allow you to trip their fur. 

Your dog will thank you for taking care of their coat. Just make sure you do not shave their fur unless there is a medical reason for doing so.  

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