To Shave or Not to Shave, that is the question

Discussion in 'Dog Grooming' started by splitz831, Jun 7, 2008.

  1. splitz831 New Member

    I have a bernese mountain dog who is 8 months old, at least 70 lbs (hasn't been weighed in about a month) and as all BMD's are is BLACK! He's boiling in this heat! And July isn't going to be any better. So anyone with a big hairy fluffy hot dog, here is the question do I make him the laughing stock of the neighbourhood and shave him or let him suffer and pant for three to four more months?

  2. Jean Cote Administrator

    I have a black husky and the funny thing is ....... she lies down in the sun. LOL. You could always fill up one of those kiddie pools and let the dog jump in it when it's too hot. I have a full sized inground pool but my husky doesn't like swimming in it. Although i do have air conditioning so she isn't outside all of the time.
    bekah1001 likes this.
  3. bordeaux New Member

    I'm not sure about bernese mountain dogs but I know the coats of some other long hair breeds work as an insulator, keeping the heat out. If you shave him it may actually make it harder for him to keep cool.
    Kiddy pools are great for summer, I also fill empty drink bottles with beef or chicken stock and freeze them. My boy loves them.
    You could also try freezing his bones.
  4. splitz831 New Member

    Thanks for the ideas. I'm not sure if his fur acts like an insolator, he's just barely stopped panting since the snow melted. He looks like he's going to hyperventilate most of the time I'll look it up on line.
  5. sarhaspups New Member

    Be aware also that his coat may never grow back the same also.
    You could shave his tummy so that he can lay on the cool hard floor at home and maybe will help. I have a kiddy pool for my dogs and they love it when it's hot.
  6. yoyopoodle Well-Known Member

    I'm a groomer and people ask me this all the time. There is truth to everything that has been mentioned here.

    With light colored dogs I recommend leaving the hair long if the owner grooms them as needed (I'd rather shave a dog if they will otherwise be constantly matted and dirty). On the dark dogs I really leave it up to the owner... The hair usually is a great insulator, but black pulls in the heat... if the hair is shaved, it usually comes back thicker and wavier which seems to make dogs hotter than the original coat.

    If your dog spends a decent amount of time inside (not always in the sun), probably the best thing to do is to get all the loose hair out that you can and keep him clean (and blow-dried with a force dryer, if possible). Maybe take him to a groomer that does the Furminator treatment/. You could also have his coat thinned with thinning shears at the skin - this would help get air down to his skin.
  7. Jean Cote Administrator

    I bathed my husky using the special furminator shampoo and conditioner and got tons of hair out, it's still coming out like crazy. :)
  8. yoyopoodle Well-Known Member

    I've never used the shampoo in my shop, but I've heard good things about it. I love using the actual brush/rake tool though. I had a few heavily shedding Am. Eskimos in the other day and had at it :D
  9. hockey390 New Member

    I've been tossing around this idea for my dog as well.. Golden Retriever, and she always pants. Now that it's hot it is even worse. I use the furminator on my dog as well and love it. I don't want to ruin the dogs coat, but I'm starting to wonder if it is going to be something I just have to do as far as shaving goes..
  10. storm22 Experienced Member

    ive always wonndered about those furminators and if they do really work.

    you can get them for horses too, ill need one in spring

    but yeah if you dont want to ruin your dogs coat, a little pool is great (unless your like storm and only like smelly creek water)
    my dogs after a good run at the beach or that will actually stand next in line with the horses for a bath, (timex used to push her way in and stand under my horse for a hose:)) )
  11. montsterdog Well-Known Member

    I got one (Furminator) and it is awesome! I think as long as your dog has an undercoat it will work. I would recommend trying it. It really did wonders to my dogs. :D
  12. tx_cowgirl Honored Member

    I would definitely suggest a kiddie pool. I have a kiddie pool for my dogs, and they love it. Grooming the dog regularly helps as well. Although with some dogs I've heard the coat comes in thicker and wavier, I don't really see that as a problem if you're planning on continuing to clip the dog.
    I haven't noticed any change in Mudflap's coat since I started clipping her. I don't completely shave her, I just thin it out and shorten it a lot. It really seems to keep her from getting so hot, and she doesn't look dumb either. When I'm done clipping her, her coat is just a little longer and thicker than that of a short-coated Border Collie. With the clipping, the kiddie pool, and plenty of water and shade, she doesn't burn up in these hot Texas summers. If it's unbearably hot, I keep her inside, but I let her out as much as possible because she enjoys it. =)
  13. Sameeee Well-Known Member

    when we had a Chow Chow we where told to mist him with a spray bottle to keep him cool in the summer. and to never cut him down.
  14. MaryK Honored Member

    You can also get dog 'cooler' collars. You just fill with water freeze and then tie them around the dogs neck - they have long ties so one size will fit all and could, if necessary, be extended. Plus when they melt the dog can drink the iced water. They're made of water proof material, obviously, and really do work well. You can buy them on e-bay. Plus if you're dogs really hot, make some 'doggy ice cubes', recipes for great ones on this forum. Also I have a plunge pool for the dogs, only one uses it though, the other is 'allergic' to water (in his mind only):D
    Personally I wouldn't shave, it may make it worse for him, as even with a black coat, it would still be more protection.

    The Furminator shampoos are fantastic. I used then with German Shepherds.

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