Mythbuster Monday! …Should I Shave My Dog’s Coat Because of Hot Weather?

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Myth: I have to shave my dog’s coat because he looks so hot.

Fact: Many double-coated breeds have weatherproof coats that not only keep them warm in the winter, but also serve as insulators in the summer. A dog’s coat protects him from heat, sunburn, and even skin cancer. Shaving removes their protective layer, putting the dog’s skin at the mercy of the elements. Think of a heavy coat as your dog’s sun umbrella. Also, because dogs don’t sweat the way humans do, shaving the hair coat doesn’t actually help facilitate the thermoregulating process. Keeping a double coat in good condition with regular brushing is the best way to help a dog stay cool in summer. 

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Posted in Mythbuster
4 comments on “Mythbuster Monday! …Should I Shave My Dog’s Coat Because of Hot Weather?
  1. Luanna Prater says:

    Thank you for stating what I tell my Pom owners. They think because their baby has such a thick coat that it is making it extra hot. One of the things I breed for is a beautiful rich thick coat and I cringe when I see it shaved off! Please just brush, brush and don’t leave your baby out to long, plenty of water too.

  2. This is what I try to convey to people, so thanks for busting this myth! Now it just needs to become more wide-known so people stop trying to make me feel bad for not shaving my keeshond in the summer. While my keeshond doesn’t want much to do with the outdoors when it’s over 85 degrees outside (which I respect so I bought him a dog treadmill to exercise in the air-conditioned house), when we do go out and about during the summer, I bring along a couple battery operated fans, shade and lots of water. He also LOVES to swim and stand in his baby pool in the backyard. People then think it will take him forever to dry, however, his undercoat doesn’t seem to saturate and he dries a lot quicker than people think! While we should be aware there are breed specific limits, we also need to give the evolution of the dog more credit.

  3. Barbara Bird says:

    And another thing: The shaved double coat does not always grow back nice. As a professional groomer, I have been refusing to shave down double coats for years. THANK YOU for making me not so crazy!
    BBird, Certified Master Groomer

  4. Agility Saints says:

    I am going to print this out and carry it with me. Last weekend at an Agility trial there was a shaved Sammy. When I made the comment, “Oh, dear, that poor dog” someone answered with, “Well, the dog doesn’t care how it looks, and it has to be much cooler.” I just looked at the person, stunned. All I could think about was sunburn, skin cancer, etc. I have two Saints, and I would never think of shaving them down.

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