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My dog is a 1.5 year old English Springer Spaniel/Border Collie mix. She has thick black fur.

Summer is upon us, and it gets HOT here. Last year we did not shave her down, but would it be advisable to do so? Or just trim her down a little?

It has been suggested and initially I dismissed the suggestion, but if it makes her more comfortable through the hottest months here in Virginia, I'll do it.

But if it isn't worth it or would cause any kind of harm, I won't.

Thanks!
 

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There is no reason why you cannot cut her down shorter, or shave her (though I wouldn't go shorter than a 7 blade). There are arguements for both sides, with some saying the coat protects them from the heat, etc and so on..Personally, I SEE the difference in dogs that are cut down..going from lethargic and panting to running and playing. May not be scientifically "correct" behavior, but it happens. If you go as short as a 7, you will need to watch for sunburn for a few weeks, and as always, if its too hot for you to be outside running around, its too hot for the dog, hair or no hair.
 

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I'm with Graco... If you want to do it, then do it.. That's what I always tell me people that come into my shop.. Don't ever let anyone tell you that you can't shave down your dog..

Little tip though. Dogs lose heat through panting, their pads and their bellies.. So a simple shave up to the armpits will cool your dog down a lot.. but sometimes you do need that extra shave of the rest of the body..
 

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I'm with Graco on this one. I've groomed for 15 years, and have heard both sides argue; but honestly, it comes down to what you want. If you want to try clipping her short for the summer months, go for it; there are ways of retaining her coat, like deshedding and carding (which the groomer should do anyway), so I don't see any reason to not try it atleast once.

A bonus, if she likes to swim, she will be a breeze to towel off!
 

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Yes, "no no" or not, I shave down my 2 girls. It is just so much easier with all the crap they pick up in the yard, and when they swim. And I think they act more comfortable after a shave.... it may be my imagination but wth? I have never seen any harm in it. It isn't as though they are outdoors 24 hours a day. When they get too hot, and want to come inside, they come to the door and bark (annoyingly)

I have even shaved my english bulldog. I don't know why, because he is barely outside... I just wanted to. The hair grew back normally.
 

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I trim (not shave) my Golden for the summer. I haven't noticed that he tolerates the heat any better, but it makes finding ticks much easier.
 

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Guess I'm the odd ball out.lol. I wouldn't trim or cut any coat unless there is a medical reason for it (which I had to do for my poor pooch :() I do agree that its up to you, there are some people that shave their dogs completely and then don't take proper care of them and they get skin problems because of over-exposure to the elements. Some coats do provide some insulation too, I believe this is particularly true in double coated breeds. With some dogs (depending on the breed), their coats don't grow in the same after being cut. Here is some reading on the side that don't really advocate it, but hey, many owners shave and nothing bad happens so like everyone said: Its your decision:D

Fisher, Tracy."Your Dog's Coat: To Shave or Not to Shave?". http://www.pets.com/articles/3/0/448

Kelly, Gary Wynn. "Shaving Northern Dogs". http://www.adrtc.org/shaving-northern-dogs/

Peterson, Lisa. "Ask AKC". http://www.akc.org/press_center/akc_syndicate/ask_AKC/0806.cfm

Salzberg, Kathy. "The Great Shave Debate". http://www.dogchannel.com/dog-information/dog-groomer-salzberg/dog-shaving-debate.aspx?cm_sp=InternalClicks-_-RelatedArticles-_-dog-information/dog-groomer-salzberg/dog-shaving-debate
 

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I have 2 dogs that i shave down too, my groomer always tells me to be careful because they can get sunburn. Please be careful
 
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