While many dog parents save up and don’t get their dog’s hair cut, letting it mat before getting it all cut down before summertime, they think that they are saving their money and helping their dog to stay cool all at the same time. Now the argument seems to be, is this a wise choice or does getting your dog’s hair cut too short hinder them during the hot months?
While many dog parents are concerned that long or thick coated dogs get hotter or can suffer from hyperthermia, heat exhaustion and dehydration, experts have suggested that it may not be wise; that nature will take care of the dogs – just like it has since wolves became tamed and domesticated dogs became our house pets.
According to one source, the right answer is that to cut or not to cut is a personal choice. It will all depend on just how much time you have to take care of your best friend’s coat.
This means that those who choose to get a thick or double-coated dog (such as a Soft-Coated Wheaten Terrier, Husky, Malamute or German shepherd) or long haired dog (Yorkshire Terriers, Shelties and Maltese for example) cut for summer, these dogs will be okay either way. They have plenty of hair which may alter their desire to be out and about in the direct heat, but they will be just fine if their hair is not thinned or cut. The fact is that dog’s were born to shed so that they can adjust to the warmer climate. If you thoroughly brush your dog’s fur, the undercoat will shed off and air can flow easier through his or her thick fur and get to their skin thus cooling them naturally.
By trimming your dog’s hair or fur, it is simply making the coat more manageable thus helping the dog to be more comfortable….and cooler. The recommendation is that a half inch of hair/fur is left so as to protect the dog’s skin from the damaging rays of the sun. A dog’s coat also has other benefits for your four legged companion as well, so that is another reason not to shave a dog – ever.
Bathing helps significantly, too. Once your dog is clean and brushed, the air will once again be able to circulate. Dirty matted hair/fur does not allow for airflow.
The major recommendation is to have a professional groomer cut your dog’s hair/fur since they are trained to know the best style for summertime comfort. They have been trained not to damage a dog’s skin by cutting their pelt too close. In Chicagoland, Conny Scardino is highly recommended. She is currently operating out of Hinsdale and knows the best cuts for all sizes, ages and breeds of dogs.
It is vital to have a shady spot for your dog to rest in outside and a cool spot in your home. Cool water is also a must and must be replenished often!
All of these suggestions will allow for your pooch to be as comfortable as possible in the summertime months. The choice is yours to cut or not to cut but just realizing the benefits and disadvantages is very helpful indeed!