Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?
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Thread: Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?

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    Senior Member sillylilykitty's Avatar
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    Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?

    Ok, from what I have heard shaving a long haired dog is bad. But what if the owner plans to shave the dog every summer? Is it ok then? Or why can Shih Tzus, Bishons, Maltese and Poodles get shaved down and then grow it out again? Is it because of the different hair types/textures?

    And can someone explain exactly why not to shave a dogs fur? I have told people it's bad to shave a long haired dog, they asked why and all I could remember was it was something about guard hairs on the top being shaved to the same length as the undercoat and that was bad...
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    Senior Member Love's_Sophie's Avatar
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    Re: Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?

    Yes, it does have to do with coat type. While some dogs have double coats, they are a different type of double coat, that will remain 'unaffected' by being clipped, and will still come back in fine. While others, will not come back the same.

    That said...The main "long coat" dogs I pretty much try to refuse to shave at all costs are dogs with a double coat like a Pomeranian, Pyr, Newf, etc...those type of coats. These are the types of coats that don't seem to grow back properly. There really is no 'explaination' why, and it's not every dog that the coat won't grow back properly either; some dogs will grow back fine, but then you will get some that after a year, will still have 'splotches' where the top coat still has not grown back in. Now, if the owner still wants the dog shaved, of course, I have to do my job, but I do warn them that their dog's coat 'may not' come back in properly, and they may be stuck keeping the dog short for the rest of his life...that usually sways them into letting me simply scissor cutting the dog

    It seems as long as you don't touch the undercoat, you are fine...which is confusing, because when you shave it, it is the top coat that doesn't come back in...the undercoat comes back fine...odd...oh well.

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    Re: Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?

    My experience with sled dogs says NEVER. Yeesh, the Husky was shaved just weeks before coming around here. His coat was nasty (some diet issues too), and when it started growing back he blew coat every 45 days for six months. I did however have the Saint shaved 24 hours after getting him. He was covered in hot spots and mattes. Mostly just a case by case thing, but I would rather spend two weeks with a rake and comb than shave 'em.

    Like Love's_Sophie said, it might not come back right. Bubba took nearly 18 months to get here:
    Last edited by harrise; 02-27-2008 at 10:28 AM.

  5. #4
    Senior Member Rough_Collies2008's Avatar
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    Re: Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?

    Quote Originally Posted by Love's_Sophie View Post
    Yes, it does have to do with coat type. While some dogs have double coats, they are a different type of double coat, that will remain 'unaffected' by being clipped, and will still come back in fine. While others, will not come back the same.

    That said...The main "long coat" dogs I pretty much try to refuse to shave at all costs are dogs with a double coat like a Pomeranian, Pyr, Newf, etc...those type of coats. These are the types of coats that don't seem to grow back properly. There really is no 'explaination' why, and it's not every dog that the coat won't grow back properly either; some dogs will grow back fine, but then you will get some that after a year, will still have 'splotches' where the top coat still has not grown back in. Now, if the owner still wants the dog shaved, of course, I have to do my job, but I do warn them that their dog's coat 'may not' come back in properly, and they may be stuck keeping the dog short for the rest of his life...that usually sways them into letting me simply scissor cutting the dog

    It seems as long as you don't touch the undercoat, you are fine...which is confusing, because when you shave it, it is the top coat that doesn't come back in...the undercoat comes back fine...odd...oh well.
    Oh boy, I sure hope Riley's coat grows back in fine. Why they shaved as much as they did, beats me.

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    Senior Member sheltiemom's Avatar
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    Re: Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?

    The local sheltie rescue has alot of pics on their website of before and after of dogs who were matted and had to be shaved. They all seem to grow back really nice. I would not shave my long haired dogs just because their coats are a huge part of why I like them as a breed, but I have to admit I'm mystified as to why a dogs coat wouldn't grow back normally. I wonder if it has something to do with diet or overall health rather than just the fact that they were shaved.
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    Re: Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?

    Quote Originally Posted by sheltiemom View Post
    I wonder if it has something to do with diet or overall health rather than just the fact that they were shaved.
    Yes and yes. Diet and health have a great impact on coat and skin condition.

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    Senior Member AkiraleShiba's Avatar
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    Re: Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?

    I know that Cairns Cannot event be shown if their coat was shaved once.

    Dogs' coats also provide isolation against both, heat and cold, and also protection from the sun.

    I personally would not shave a long hair dog because there are no advantages for them only bad things may happen.

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    Re: Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?

    the reason the hair doesnt come in normally is because the gaurd hairs and the undercoat grow back at different paces. the undercoat grows very fast, while the gaurd hairs take longer. the coat comes in very fluffy, b/c it is just undercoat for a long time. this is generally speaking, some dogs grow back fine b/c their undercoat and gaurd hairs grow at the same pace. more often than not though, it will take time. if the dog is shaved once, usually the coat will grow in fine, but it takes at least 6 months to a year to do so. and until it grows in, the dog is severly unprepared for any harsh weather.

    if the hair doesnt come back in at all, then it is usually because of some other health issue, not the actual shaving. usually though, if you found out about a lot of those issues beofre you shaved the dog, the hair would have been saved.

    dogs like shih tzus, poodles, bichons, etc can be shaved with no problem b/c they do not have an undercoat. all their hair grows at the same length. they also do not need their coat for insulation. these dogs do not have a coat that is need to withstand hot and cold temperatures, which is not the case with other dogs, like labs, newfies, huskies, shepards, etc. these dogs need the coat. even if the hair grew in normal, i wouldnt shave these dogs b/c they actually need it. even if the owner was planning on keeping the dog shaved, i would refuse to groom the dog. why? because i, and other groomers, do what we do to help the dogs. shaving their coat is not helping them.

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    Senior Member Durbkat's Avatar
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    Re: Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?

    I've had Snoopy shaved, this is the second time and the first time it grew back within 2 or 3 months. I'm sure it will be fine again. But he does need the hair during the winter time, he just shivers like crazy since he got shaved, even with his coat on. I didn't want to do it at this time but the groomers said it needed to be done. I plan on doing it during the summer, not as short, because he got hot easy and we couldn't do much but after he got shaved the first time he enjoyed himself more as he didn't get hot as easily.


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    Senior Member Rough_Collies2008's Avatar
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    Re: Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?

    Quote Originally Posted by Purplex15 View Post
    the reason the hair doesnt come in normally is because the gaurd hairs and the undercoat grow back at different paces. the undercoat grows very fast, while the gaurd hairs take longer. the coat comes in very fluffy, b/c it is just undercoat for a long time. this is generally speaking, some dogs grow back fine b/c their undercoat and gaurd hairs grow at the same pace. more often than not though, it will take time. if the dog is shaved once, usually the coat will grow in fine, but it takes at least 6 months to a year to do so. and until it grows in, the dog is severly unprepared for any harsh weather.

    if the hair doesnt come back in at all, then it is usually because of some other health issue, not the actual shaving. usually though, if you found out about a lot of those issues beofre you shaved the dog, the hair would have been saved.

    dogs like shih tzus, poodles, bichons, etc can be shaved with no problem b/c they do not have an undercoat. all their hair grows at the same length. they also do not need their coat for insulation. these dogs do not have a coat that is need to withstand hot and cold temperatures, which is not the case with other dogs, like labs, newfies, huskies, shepards, etc. these dogs need the coat. even if the hair grew in normal, i wouldnt shave these dogs b/c they actually need it. even if the owner was planning on keeping the dog shaved, i would refuse to groom the dog. why? because i, and other groomers, do what we do to help the dogs. shaving their coat is not helping them.
    So, would you say a 7 month old collie pup will grow their hair back fine if it was shaved?

    Riley was shaved a week a week and a half ago for an ultra/sound. Here is one side:



    It is not as noticeable in the pictures, but it is in person. He already has hair growing back, slowly but surely. Obviously, I would still love him just fine if it didn't, but I do want his lovely coat to come back in full.

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    Senior Member Laurelin's Avatar
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    Re: Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?

    Stomach shouldn't matter too much I don't think. Trey's back end has been shaved several times for tumor removals and you can still see where. It hasn't grown back the same at all...

    Durb, shih tzus have a totally different type of hair than say a rough collie or a sheltie. These breeds have a harsh outer coat with guard hairs and a soft, fluffy undercoat. If you shave you remove the outercoat, leaving just the undercoat.

    I wouldn't shave a longhaired, double coated breed unless you had to.
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    Senior Member sillylilykitty's Avatar
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    Re: Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?

    Thank you everyone for explaining to me why it shouldnt be done. I understand now. I dont plan on ever getting a long haired dog (long haired cat yes but not a dog) but this is good information to know.
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    Senior Member Laurelin's Avatar
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    Re: Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?

    But longhaired dogs are the best So much more fun to snuggle/pet.
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    Senior Member sillylilykitty's Avatar
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    Re: Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?

    Yeah yeah I wouldnt know I've only snuggled with shorthaired dogs. What I do know is that I dont want to put up with the grooming (whether it be me brushing for hours every day or spending money to bring him/her to the groomers) that is just not for me. I like the brush-occasionally-bath-when-they-need-it-towel-off-&-air-dry kind of dog
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    Senior Member FriendsOfZoe's Avatar
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    Re: Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?

    Quote Originally Posted by sillylilykitty View Post
    I like the brush-occasionally-bath-when-they-need-it-towel-off-&-air-dry kind of dog
    golden retrieeeeever....and soooooooo soft to snuggle with!

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    Senior Member sillylilykitty's Avatar
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    Re: Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?

    LOL, what is this, long haired dog people trying to convert me?
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    Senior Member Laurelin's Avatar
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    Re: Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?

    Actually, I think you'd be shocked at how little grooming I actually do with two shelties and two papillons. Except during shedding season (twice a year) when the shelties blow coat I brush a few times a week for only about 30 minutes. They get bathed monthly or so and that's that. Paps never blow coat as they have no undercoat so you don't even have to rake them. They need baths more often though, I'm not sure why. Comb out the ears, brush the coat just a little and they're good to go. they only get tangles in the ears but those are fine if you run a comb through them daily.

    Compare that to a breed like a lab- labs shed a LOT if you've ever owned one, lol.

    Now I can't take a breed that needs professional grooming all the time- too much work LOL. Longhaired dogs kept pretty naturally are the way to go for me. Trimming on the legs and underside every now and then but it's no big deal. I do it myself about once a month.

    No, not trying to convert, I just think people have this horrible idea of how much grooming I must do when I post pictures, LOL. Every time I post pics someone always asks if I spend ages grooming- actually, I don't! Not remotely!
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    Senior Member FriendsOfZoe's Avatar
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    Re: Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?

    Quote Originally Posted by sillylilykitty View Post
    LOL, what is this, long haired dog people trying to convert me?
    Well, no, but like Laurelin, I just want to make sure you know that having a long haired dog doesn't have to involve tons of grooming or shedding...I know you like short haired dogs, and that is fine...but don't just say, I don't like dog hair or grooming so I can't get a golden retriever...they require hardly any grooming, and their shedding is actually a lot more manageable than some short dogs' (like labs).

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    Senior Member Rough_Collies2008's Avatar
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    Re: Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?

    Quote Originally Posted by Laurelin View Post
    Actually, I think you'd be shocked at how little grooming I actually do with two shelties and two papillons. Except during shedding season (twice a year) when the shelties blow coat I brush a few times a week for only about 30 minutes. They get bathed monthly or so and that's that. Paps never blow coat as they have no undercoat so you don't even have to rake them. They need baths more often though, I'm not sure why. Comb out the ears, brush the coat just a little and they're good to go. they only get tangles in the ears but those are fine if you run a comb through them daily.

    Compare that to a breed like a lab- labs shed a LOT if you've ever owned one, lol.

    Now I can't take a breed that needs professional grooming all the time- too much work LOL. Longhaired dogs kept pretty naturally are the way to go for me. Trimming on the legs and underside every now and then but it's no big deal. I do it myself about once a month.

    No, not trying to convert, I just think people have this horrible idea of how much grooming I must do when I post pictures, LOL. Every time I post pics someone always asks if I spend ages grooming- actually, I don't! Not remotely!
    I agree, I think many people assume 'long hair' lots of coat care. They shed, but not anymore then dogs in general.

    The collies and sheltie are fairly easy to care for. I actually think the collies are easier then the sheltie myself.

    I may be weird, but I enjoy the process of grooming the long coated dogs. Going from a wet shaggy dog, to a nice fluffy coat.

    Hopefully, you are right about the stomach, and side hair. He already has fur growing back.

    It is like waiting for water to boil. I need to stop starring at it, hoping it will grow a few inches overnight
    Last edited by Rough_Collies2008; 02-28-2008 at 12:45 PM.

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    Senior Member Shaina's Avatar
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    Re: Shaving long haired dogs, when is it ok?

    Quote Originally Posted by FriendsOfZoe View Post
    Well, no, but like Laurelin, I just want to make sure you know that having a long haired dog doesn't have to involve tons of grooming or shedding...I know you like short haired dogs, and that is fine...but don't just say, I don't like dog hair or grooming so I can't get a golden retriever...they require hardly any grooming, and their shedding is actually a lot more manageable than some short dogs' (like labs).
    I'd take a golden's coat over Kim's coat. They are equally pretty (to my mind ), but Kim just sheds like there's no tomorrow. Undercoat and guardhairs both. I'm to the point where I brush her every day w/ pin and slicker brushes just to make a dent, but everything (including me) is covered in hair constantly. Bleh :-(. I'm getting a rake this weekend so hopefully that will help as well. I pet her and hair just blows off in a fine cloud--I'm hoping this doesn't continue...maybe it's seasonal?

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