Will My Dog Be Cooler If Its Coat Is Shaven Off ? Guest Blog Post by Animal Magic Pet Grooming

The following is with thanks to Animal Magic Pet Grooming – subscribe to their informative e-newsletter. 

To clip or not to clip ?  Fact or Fiction…..

Summer has begun and we are already feeling the effects of what is expected to be a hot summer period. Our phones have been running ‘hot’ with many clients wanting to have their double coated dogs shaven in preparation for hot days. But is this best for the dog?

Many people still are unsure about what a double coated dog is and if their dog has the double coat. Well, generally speaking, if your dogs hair stays the same length without it being cut, and it sheds, it’s likely a double coat. It’s called a double coat because it consists of two types of hair – an overcoat and an undercoat.The overcoat is made up of guard hairs which are thicker, smoother, straighter hairs than the undercoat, which has a downy feel to it. The overcoat is water resistant, protects the skin from sun damage, twigs and thorns, and bugs. It acts as a temperature regulating layer between your dogs body and the (ambient) air, but needs proper air circulation to do so. The undercoat is your dogs insulation. It’ll grow more of this in the winter, and shed it when the weather warms.

Different breeds of dogs have varying amounts of undercoat and overcoat, and because we’ve bred our dogs to have coats that wouldn’t be found in nature, many dogs need help with the shedding process through brushing. As summer approaches, many people feel their dog is better off when their coat is shaved off, to help keep them cool. Except that, what happens to your dogs coat is this: as each hair has a predetermined length, and needs the weight of itself to fall out at the right time, cutting the hair makes it not fall out when it’s supposed to, which can lead to clogged hair follicles, and skin issues. The proper temperature regulating system of the coat is altered, and it no longer performs it’s intended functions; keeping your dog warm in winter, and cool in summer. You may also need to be concerned with sun burn, depending on how short the coat is shaved. As the coat grows back, it comes in with an overabundance of undercoat, and lack of overcoat, with a dull, fuzzy look to it. Additionally, this new coat acts more like a sponge, and less like a raincoat, and due to the softer texture, it becomes more prone to matting, requiring even more maintenance.

In summary, totally removing the coat of a double coated breed can make the dog hotter as the insulating properties of the normal coat are remived. They can badly sunburn when skin not suited to sun exposure is bared. Contiual clipping over time replaces the normal coat with the think woolly undercoat that sheds, causes heat stress, and provides the ideal environment for fleas and ticks.

What can you do for your dog? The best solution is to have regular demoults of the dog’s coat, this removes the thicker undercoat that is ‘dead’ and keeps the overcoat strong and healthy. This allows for the natrual insulation system to remain functioning normally and keeping the dog comfortable through warm weather.

If you are still unsure please speak to one of our qualified groomers who can give you the right advice for your pet.

Animal Magic Pet Grooming Salons are the among the best in South East Queensland ! Our talented team of Pet Stylists have won many awards.  Animal Magic Pet Grooming on the Gold Coast offer a professional service of the highest standard, and their aim is to make every pet look their very best whilst keeping the owner happy 🙂   [ click here for their website ]



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