If your dog sheds a lot, you’ve probably thought about shaving him to reduce the amount of hair left in your home. Maybe you thought shaving your dog would keep him cooler in the summer. You may think your dog looks cute shaved.
In general, dogs whose hair only grows to a certain length and then stops, and especially dogs with double coats – dogs with an undercoat that sheds – should not be clipped. Here are three reasons why this may not be the best option for your dog.
- Shaving that type of hair can damage the dog’s coat. It may grow back well the first time, but eventually your dog’s coat will likely lose its shine and grow back patchily or not at all, especially if he has underlying health problems. This can occur in any breed, but is especially common in Pomeranians. Have you ever seen one with stringy hair and bald spots? It can be the result of a health problem, but most often it is alopecia, caused by a lifetime of shaving.
- They will still shed, just smaller hairs. You may think that shorter hairs are less noticeable, but they can be much more difficult to clean. Short hairs become splinters that burrow into your furniture and skin.
- Your dog needs his coat to stay cool in the heat. Unlike humans, dogs cannot sweat (except for the pads of their feet). They pant to keep cool. Shaving them actually exposes their skin more directly to the sun, causing them to overheat. Brushing out the undercoat without shaving the top coat is the best way to keep your dog cool. For additional relief from the heat, you may choose to have your dog’s belly shaved so he can feel cool grass or tiles without destroying his entire coat or exposing him to the chance of sunburn.
A good groomer should warn you about these possibilities before shaving your dog. Be wary if they only accept your money to shave your dog without a warning that the coat may not grow back.