Summer Hair Cuts for Dogs

Dog HaircutMany dog owners wonder if their dogs need to have their hair cut or shaved in the summer months. Long or thick coated dogs are often a main concern in this debate. There is some disagreement among experts as to whether or not it’s best to cut your dog’s hair in the summer, or just leave it alone and let nature take care of this.

The right answer likely depends on your personal preference and how much time you have to spend on the personal care of your pet.

If your dog is very thick coated or double-coated, such as a husky, malamute, or german shepherd, or if it has very long hair like yorkies, shelties, and the maltese for example., then there is certainly nothing wrong with getting a summer cut for your pet.

Trimming your dog’s hair or fur makes it much more manageable and will help your dog stay cooler. However, you should always leave at least ½ inch to an inch of hair to protect the skin form the damaging rays of the sun. Fur on dogs has other benefits for your pet as well, so never shave it down to the skin. If you do choose to get a summer cut, it is best to allow a professional groomer to perform the hair cutting. They will know the best style to cut your pet’s hair into to help them stay cool in the summer without damaging the skin, or getting it too close.

If you prefer to not cut your dog’s hair, then that’s okay too. Dogs are specially developed to grow thicker coats in the winter, and then shed to achieve a lighter coat to stay cooler in the summer. Thorough and frequent brushing can ensure all of the undercoat is removed from the fur, and will also encourage air flow through the thick fur and to the skin.

Keeping your dog bathed also helps. Clean brushed fur allows for air circulation much better than dirty matted fur. You should make sure there is always access to shade, and that your pet always has access to fresh cold water. With either option you choose, as long as you never forget clean, cold water, shade, and general good pet owner policies your furry friend will be happy all summer long!

Photo: Flickr