Golden Retrievers are a sporting dog breed that was created to be a hunting companion during sport. For this reason, Golden Retrievers have a double fur coat to protect them from the weather and outdoor terrain. It can be tempting to shave your hot Golden Retriever come summertime, but is that the right move?
Can I shave my Golden Retriever?
No, it is not OK to shave your Golden Retriever unless there are health issues that make it necessary. Their unique dog fur coat protects them from the weather’s elements while outdoors.
Their fur coat allows them to spend long hours outdoors in cold and warm weather while it protects their skin and body from problems. Contrary to popular belief, shaving does not keep most dogs cool during the hot summer months including a double fur coat dog like the Golden Retriever.
The double fur coat Golden Retriever has two layers of fur that work to insulate but also keep out the heat and cool them off. Their fur regulates the temperature of their body.
Shaving them unnecessarily can have adverse effects not only on their health but appearance.
If parents want to shave them to keep their Golden Retrievers cool, this will not work and does the opposite since their fur is self-cooling and insulating.
Having the proper tools like a cooling mat and plenty of water will help keep Golden Retrievers cool during hot seasons.
Leaving it intact ensures they are properly insulated during cooler months and when they are outdoors in the elements.
If the reason for deciding to shave their Golden Retriever is for appearance and to cut down on shedding the act of shaving can cause issues with that natural body process when the time comes. Aside from that good grooming habits will help with appearance and less fur everywhere.
Is there ever a time I need to shave my Golden Retriever?
Yes, there can be a time when you need to shave your Golden Retriever but not very often. If you don’t have good grooming habits for your dog their double fur coat could get severely matted.
If that happens, their fur coat might need to be shaved at the veterinarian or a professional groomer.
If they are suffering from a health issue, injury, or skin condition your Golden Retriever might need to be shaved. Shaving should be done by a professional groomer or their veterinarian to ensure their fur coat grows back healthy when the time comes.
If my Golden Retriever needs to be shaved will it grow back?
Yes, if your Golden Retriever needs to be shaved for any of the above-listed reasons their fur will grow back as long as they are shaved correctly. Using a professional groomer or having them shaved at their groomer ensures the fur will grow back correctly and healthy.
Double fur coats are different then single fur coats, shaving them correctly is vital to their health and the beauty of their fur coat.
The fur coat might not grow back exactly as it was prior to the shave but if their health was at risk and shaving necessary that shouldn’t matter.
The texture might be different, the color slightly different and it might not grow back to the same length.
In some rare cases for older or sick Golden Retrievers their top layer coat may not grow back at all. Considerations must be made when deciding to shave your Golden Retriever and shaving only in the instance of health issues is important.
During the grow back phase it can be important to prevent exposure to known allergens to the Golden Retrievers skin isn’t affected.
Using sunscreen and protecting from the heat during the grow back phase is important so they don’t suffer overheating or sun burn.
Keeping a close watch during this time when your Golden Retriever is outdoor helps prevent injuries to the skin and body from outdoor terrain and debris. Their fur usually does that but without that added protective layer your Golden Retriever can become injured more easily.
What is a Double Layer Fur Coat?
A double layer fur coat is a style of coat some dog breeds are bred to have due to their breed background. These dogs will have two layers of fur instead of one like some other dog breeds.
The two layers serve different purposes for the dog and are usually found on sporting or dog breeds designed to be outside for long periods of time.
The top layer is known as the outer layer, it protects against outdoor elements, weather and debris like sticks and burrs. This layer of fur is more coarse, stiff, and sometimes waterproof depending on the dog breed.
The bottom layer is known as the inner layer, it regulates the bodies temperature and adds warmth or cools the body. This layer is softer, fluffier, and silky.
These two layers come together to protect the dog, their skin and body while providing protect from the elements of the weather. Heat, cold, sun, snow and rain can all be a part of outdoor life and certain dog breeds like Golden Retrievers were bred to spend great amounts of time outdoors.
Contrary to popular belief dogs don’t sweat through their fur. Areas like the pads of their paws are the areas where sweat is released and therefore shaving a Golden Retriever to relief heat and sweat will not work.
Will shaving my Golden Retriever affect his fur coat’s shedding?
Yes, shaving your Golden Retriever can affect his fur coat’s shedding. Shaving your Golden Retriever disturbs and changes the natural growth and sometimes the cycle of that growth.
Depending on when the shaving is done, and how far down they are shaved it can affect how their fur coat grows back.
If it must be done for health reasons, maintaining healthy grooming habits after the shave can promote regular growth and a healthy shedding cycle during Spring and Autumn.
While it is not OK to shave your Golden Retriever, sometimes its necessary for their health. Doing so does bring potential risks and changes like their topcoat doesn’t ever grow back.
Shaving their fur will not help with cooling them off so it should never be done for this reason. Good grooming habits, proper tools to keep them cool and looking beautiful are often all that is needed.