Can You Shave a Chesapeake Bay Retriever?

Many people who have dogs wonder if they can shave their dog’s hair. 

Some dogs are easier to shave than others and some dogs live perfectly fine when you shave them. 

However, some dogs are better if they are only trimmed rather than shaved. 

Shaving your Chesapeake Bay Retriever completely can make it harder for them to regulate their body temperatures. 

Can You Shave a Chesapeake Bay Retriever?

If you own a Chesapeake Bay Retriever, it’s recommended that you do not shave them completely off. They risk getting sunburnt and not being able to cool down properly if their hair is completely removed. You can still trim their hair and keep it brushed regularly though to reduce shedding. 

Since you shouldn’t shave their hair off, you might be wondering how you can groom them and how short you can cut their hair. 

We will go over some tips in this article and discuss the potential dangers of shaving their hair off. 

Why Is it Dangerous to Shave My Dog’s Hair?

Some people make the mistake of thinking that they should shave their dog’s hair completely when it gets hot outside.

You might think shaving their hair will keep them colder when the sun gets harsh during the summertime.

This is actually the opposite effect it has though. 

Your dog’s coat serves many important purposes including acting as an insulator. 

If your dog has a double coat, like the Chesapeake Bay Retriever, it’s even more important that you do not shave their hair. 

Shaving their double coat can actually cause long-term damage that makes it harder for their hair to grow back. 

This means they will spend more time not being able to properly cool off their internal body because their hair is growing back slowly. 

Their double coat helps them to avoid heat strokes and decreases their risks of getting sunburns. 

Remember that dogs can get sunburns and skin cancer just like humans. 

It’s important to leave your dog’s fur at the appropriate length so that the skin under their fur doesn’t get burnt. 

If you shave their hair, you might also notice that it does not grow back the same as it was before. 

It often comes back in patches and looks very unattractive.

Some parts of their fur might grow back slower which means you will be stuck with a dog that looks completely different than the one you had before. 

They might not even look like the same breed because Chesapeake Bay Retrievers are known for their long coats. 

How Should I Groom My Chesapeake Bay Retriever? 

Now that you know you shouldn’t shave your Chesapeake Bay, you might be wondering how you can groom them.

 Just because you can’t shave them doesn’t mean you should just leave them as it is.

You still need to take important steps to make sure you are taking care of their coats. 

By following these steps you can ensure they are cool in the hot weather and you will keep their fur and skin healthy. 

Many people don’t have time to keep up with regular dog grooming and that’s okay. 

There are plenty of professional grooming services out there that will groom your dog’s fur and do other important things like bathing and nail clipping. 

Some dog groomers even come to the house and will do the work from your home, so you don’t have to worry about driving to the groomer during our busy schedule. 

Whether you are grooming your dog yourself or using professional services, make sure these services are being done:

Brush Your Dog At Least Once a Week 

Brushing your dog can eliminate a lot of the extra fur that they have growing on them. 

It will also prevent their hair from matting and give them better air circulation throughout their coat.

You might not think that brushing has much of an impact, but it does.

Chesapeake Bay Retrievers should be brushed at least once a week, but brushing them a few times a week will be better in the summer. 

Make Sure They Get Regular Baths 

Giving your dog regular baths can also help to cool them down in the summer.

It also makes sure they are clean from bugs and dirt which can irritate their skin and cause them to itch excessively. 

Keep Their Paws Trimmed 

Dogs have cooling sweat glands on their feet. 

You might notice that your dog grows extra fur in between their toes and around their feet. 

Trimming this off can help them cool down faster. 

Some dogs don’t like having their paws touched, so this might be a service that is better done with professional help. 

Trim Their Hair in the Right Places 

While you should never cut them too short, there are some parts of the body that can be cut shorter than others.

You can trim their hair on their legs and around their stomach to make sure they cool off easier. 

Other Tips 

These things are not grooming-related, but you can still follow these tips to help ensure your dog is staying cool in the summer months or when it’s hot outside no matter the season. 

It’s always important to make sure they have access to cold water. 

It might be a good idea to put a bowl inside and another one outside so they have easy access wherever they might be playing or spending their time. 

You might also want to rearrange their exercise schedule to make sure you are not taking them for walks during the hot parts of the day.

If you like to drive places with your dog, make sure you do not leave them in the car without the air conditioning running. 

If you don’t mind your dog being wet, you can also allow them to play in the sprinklers or go swimming in the pool with you to cool down. 

Many dogs love being in the water and this can help them cool off. 

If they are swimming in the pool though, it’s recommended that you are outside with them to make sure they are safe in the water. 

If you live in an extremely hot or tropical area, you might want to consider keeping the dog inside for the majority of the day. 

Most dogs know when they are getting too warm and they might come to the door to ask to come inside. 

Your dog will pant when they are trying to cool down, so seeing them pant on a hot summer day is normal. 

If you notice your dog is always warm though and seems to be excessively panting, you might want to consider making an appointment at the vet to make sure they don’t have an underlying health condition. 

How Short Can I Cut My Dog’s Fur?

Cutting and trimming your dog’s hair is perfectly fine. 

It will help with shedding and will also make them more comfortable.

Shorter hair is also harder to get dirty and it will make it easier to see any bugs or issues they might have with their skin. 

While you can give your dog some different hair trimming based on their style and preferences, it’s best to not cut more than recommended.

For Chesapeake Bay Retrievers, you should not cut their hair shorter than an inch from their skin. 

They need at least an inch of hair to keep themselves cool in the summer weather. 

In the winter, their hair doesn’t really need to be cut at all. 

They do not need as much insulation in the wintertime. 

They might also need more of their hair because it will help to keep them warm in the cold. 

Remember that older dogs can get colder than younger ones. 

If you have an older dog, you need to make sure you are not cutting them too much. 

You might also want to give them a warm place to sleep so they don’t get cold during the night. 

Final Thoughts 

Most vets will recommend that you don’t shave your Chesapeake Bay Retriever because it will make it harder for their bodies to cool down in the heat.

They will also not be able to stay warm in the wintertime if you shave their hair down too short. 

While it might help with shedding and makes it easier for you to groom them, it’s not the best decision for their health. 

If you are concerned about shedding and need help with grooming, you can always contact a professional grooming service to help you. 

Luckily, they are a pretty easy breed to groom at home, so you don’t need to spend too much cutting or trimming. 

Make sure you are always keeping at least an inch of hair on them. 

You can trim their stomachs, legs, and feet a little extra as this helps them cool down easier. 

To help with shedding, you can also brush them and bathe them more often. 

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