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Shear the dog or not? An overview of the pros and cons

If and when to be Shear dog should be discussed quite controversially among dog owners.

The wool has to go?

Then you will find Here are the matching accessories for the dog haircut.

It goes so far that the owners of shorn dogs sometimes almost have to be insulted as animal abusers, especially on the Internet.

The unanimous mantra in response to almost every picture of a shorn dog on social media that is not a poodle is, “Scissors? No, don’t!“.

The main concern here is Fur texturewhich should lose its “natural” protective function against weather influences through shearing.

Does it make sense to shear the dog? Yes, sometimes.
Is it harmful to shear the dog? Yes, sometimes.

You see, there is just no one-size-fits-all answer on this subject.

Here you can find all the information you need to decide what for Yours Dog makes sense:

The pros and cons of shearing

You probably want to shear your dog because you are hoping for a positive effect in terms of the amount of care required for the hairstyle or your dog’s suitability for heat.

You are sure that your dog does not have a functional coat and that it will feel more comfortable with shearing. But you are insecure because you have heard so many arguments against shearing off.

In the end, the decision is up to you. Before you take action, here are all the arguments again at a glance:

Shear dog? The advantages at a glance

  • The Body heat can be dissipated more easily through the skin. This is not so important in dogs, however, because at high temperatures they rely much more on panting than on increased blood flow to the skin.
  • The Grooming becomes easier in the short term. With an easy-care summer hairstyle, there is no need to brush for a while. And dirt and grime can’t get stuck in short fur either.
  • It stays no awns, insects, thistles, etc. in the fur hang. Especially with plush long-haired dogs, a trip through the bushes can lead to an act of de-felting of several hours when the fur twists around every small twig. And ticks and fleas can also be recognized and removed more easily in short fur.
  • Inflammatory skin diseases are easier to treat. And it’s much easier to spot hot spots and avoid them.
  • The psychological component: The dog may feel lighter and more dynamic when relieved of its burden. This may be especially true of small old dogs, where the fur weighs almost more than the whole dog.

Shear dog? The disadvantages at a glance

  • You may have to be careful that the dog does not get sunburn after the clipping. Mild sunscreen can be used for the nose, the edges of the ears and less pigmented skin, after consultation with the veterinarian. But the dog should not sunbathe even with sunscreen.
  • You have to accept that the fur may not grow back quite as beautifully and regularly as before. Because in some cases the undercoat grows back much faster than the top hair and matted worse than before due to environmental influences.

    Rapidly growing undercoat can also prevent the top hair from growing back at all. This can temporarily or permanently lead to an overall patchy appearance. This is the basis for the claim that shaving leads to “thin” hair.

    After shearing, the regrowing fur should therefore be combed particularly regularly. Nevertheless, it can happen that the dog’s fur can only be saved after shearing with intensive care and in very bad cases it never becomes the same again.

  • With some dogs it can happen in individual cases that too the top hair does not grow back in its original structure and color after shearing. Here it is occasionally reported that the top hair grows back even more curly than before.

    A color change does not always occur, but it often occurs because some dog breeds already lighten up in the course of their lives for genetic reasons. With a gradual change of color, this is not so noticeable. But if the dog has been sheared black and “suddenly” grows back gray, this noticeable change is often blamed on the scissors.

  • Dogs with itchy, sensitive skin can suffer from “razor burn”, rash or other skin irritations after too aggressive radical shearing.
  • Dogs that actually had an intact coat and good thermal insulation can after the shear may overheat faster as previously.

    So you shouldn’t shear off the dog and assume that afterwards it will automatically summer sunny and can romp around in the blazing heat. Even after a shear you have to make sure that the dog has enough Peace, cooling and shade has available.

  • In very rare cases a shear can mess up the skin and lead to so-called post-clipping alopecia.

    Especially with the Nordic races Shearing can lead to permanent hair loss due to unexplained causes. It is assumed that circulatory disorders or genetic disorders in the growth cycle of the hair could lead to the fact that shorn dog fur does not grow back for years.

  • Sometimes the counter-argument is that the dog is sheared the weather and mosquitoes helpless be. Everyone has to decide that for themselves, of course, but I think that’s a bit of an exaggeration with our dogs with the best care be kept indoors. Yes, when it rains you get wet and sometimes a mosquito bites you in the butt. But this also happens to short-haired dogs.

Why do you want to shear the dog?

There are many clear and good reasons to want to shear off the dog:

Dogs with constantly growing fur

Sure, that is undisputed at first:

Some dogs without an undercoat and without a noticeable change of coat have to be sheared regularly. Otherwise their fur would keep growing and felting. This includes almost all dogs that do not shed:

  • These include Dogs with curly fur such as poodles, doodles, Bedlington Terriers, Bolognese, Bichon Frisé, Irish soft coated Wheaten Terriers or the Spanish and Portuguese water dogs.
  • Also Dogs that have long, silky coats with no undercoat, require regular grooming and sometimes benefit from an easy-care hairstyle in everyday life: These include, for example, Shih-Tzu, Maltese, Bolognese, Havanese, Coton de Tuléar and some Yorkshire Terriers.
  • Other dogs will go for a “breed typical” hairstyle only partially sheared off. The Bouvier and some wire-haired dogs such as Schnauzers or Airedale Terriers are only shaved on the thighs, chest or top of the head.

Dogs with dysfunctional power plush

Not every double-layer fur has as great a protective function as always claimed.

It’s not just about the fact that hot summer air and solar radiation do not penetrate to the dog’s skin.

Especially in summer there is a risk of overheating due to accumulated heat, if vice versa Body heat can also no longer be removed.

Granted, dogs lose less body heat through their skin and much, much more through panting. But some dogs just have too much fur!

Many dogs from excessive show breeding, who in addition to too much fur also have a short nose, would probably opt for a summer shearing.

With such statements you get the breeder of these running mountains of fur on the verge of a nervous breakdown. They then like to argue with “Mother Nature”.

But it is well known that with extreme breeding of traits based on external criteria, the animal welfare issue is often talked about nicely.

And the coat of a Pekingese or show collie has absolutely nothing to do with natural selection and evolution. Here the breeder chooses the breeding partner and ensures that his plush breeding animals Nevertheless survive the summer.

You can listen to your own common sense, I mean:

If you have already bought cooling products for the dog, only go for a walk at dusk and provide cool places to rest at home, the dog should get through the summer reasonably well.

But if the poor animal is panting hard all day long, does not come to rest, hardly wants to move, feels warm and obviously suffers, then it is time for a summer shearing.

It doesn’t always have to be a major clear cut. These dogs are happy if you shorten their fur a bit and shear their chest, stomach and the inside of their thighs.

Also Kastratenfell can lead to the fact that representatives of some dog breeds, whose fur actually wanted to be easy to care for, suddenly seem to consist only of undercoat.

Such a fur usually offers the opposite of “natural protective function” and can be sheared off. You don’t really have anything to lose.

Older dogs with joint pain

Care-intensive coat can become problematic in old age.

When the dog is at the necessary Tampering with personal care measures (e.g. lifting legs) suffers from pain or can no longer stand long, you should think about an easy-care hairstyle.

In addition, some old dogs can no longer keep themselves clean and then suffer from lumps in their fur or itching that they can no longer scratch themselves.

This is not about the functionality of the fur, but about the Disruptive factor for the dog.

If the old dog suffers from its fur: Off with it!

Dogs with overheating problems

Flat-nosed dogs with brachycephalic syndrome are extremely prone to overheating.

The short nose prevents the other dogs from cooling down by panting, which is highly effective.

Not only bulldogs suffer from this physical characteristic. There are also long-haired dogs with short snouts.

These include Shih Tzu, Lhasa Apso, some Chow Chows and, worst of all, the Pekingese.

At the same time, however, these are all breeds in which a lot of fur is desired at shows.

Here you should also listen to your common sense.

If the dog is obviously suffering, the theoretical heat insulation provided by the fur does not seem to be far off.

Also obese dogs suffer more from the heat in summer. Of course, a diet for the fat dog is much more advisable here than a short hairstyle. But since losing weight is a lengthy process, a summer hairstyle can under certain circumstances provide acute relief for the dog.

Dogs with skin problems

Dogs with Skin problems, wounds, allergies, itching, fungal infections, constant hot spots or vermin infestation sometimes benefit from a short hairstyle.

Here you can consult with the vetwhether it is advisable to separate from the coat in individual cases.

Because, on the one hand, long-haired dogs are currently oozing wounds or wounds in which an external medication is to be applied daily, hardly to be cared for otherwise.

And with some dogs, a little “breathable” fur increases the risk of inflammation, if warm air like in a greenhouse is held over the skin.

Shear matted dogs

You don’t have to shave the whole dog every time.

It is enough if you have the Problem areas regularly shortens.

Some dogs with medium-length fur tend to have felty spots due to the nature of their fur.

And this Felt knot can rub against the skin and cause inflammation. At the same time it is Combing out felt iis extremely painful for the dog.

This mainly affects the hair behind the ears, beards, armpits, stomach, genital area, buttocks and the spaces between the pads of the paws.

If you can’t keep up with regular brushing, you can …

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