Should I shave my double-coated dog?

In short, no. Although one would assume shaving  long or thick hair in the summer would keep a dog cool, it in fact does the opposite!

Double-coated breeds have evolved to manage harsh climates. Their fur acts as a thermal regulator for hot and cold temperatures, and shedding is nature’s way of making the coat suitable for heat protection.

The dangers of shaving

• Exposure to heat stroke & sunburn.
• Coat can grow back thicker, making thermal regulation difficult.
• Skin will be exposed to biting flies and mosquitoes.
• Coat can grow back unevenly; undercoat may grow back faster than “guard” coat. Since the undercoat is more likely to mat, it will need another shave, creating a vicious cycle.
• Alopecia – uneven growth and bald spots can occur.
• Dogs not used to being shaved may scratch excessively, irritating skin and creating hot spots.

How do double-coated breeds keep cool?

Keeping a healthy double-coat:

We take special care to make sure your pup is always properly groomed according to his/her breed standards. For double-coated breeds, we offer multiple de-shedding treatments to fit your needs:


Extra brushing to remove impacted undercoat. Helps your pup regulate body temperature by removing dead undercoat and allowing air flow.


Lo-shed treatment with light trimming of belly, tail, and booty.

Super Laker

Lo-shed treatment with heavy trimming of belly, tail, and booty for a contoured look. This is as short as we can go before damaging the coat.

Is my dog a double-coated breed?

Below is a list of double-coated breeds! You may be surprised at who’s on the list!

Cold Weather Dogs

Alaskan Husky
Alaskan Malamute
American Eskimo
Chinook – Rare Breed
Chow Chow
Finnish Spitz
Finnish Lapphund
German Spitz
Icelandic Sheepdog
Korean Jindo
Norwegian Elkhound
Norwegian Lundehund
Shiba Inu
Siberian Husky
Swedish Lapphund
Swedish Vallhund

Herding Dogs

Australian Cattle Dog
Australian Shepherd
Rough Collie
Smooth Collie
Bearded Collie
Belgian Sheepdog
Belgian Malinois
Bouvier des Flanders
Canaan Dog
Pembroke Corgi
Cardigan Welsh Corgi
German Shepherd Dog
Norwegian Buhund
Old English Sheepdog
Polish Lowland Sheep Dog
Shetland Sheepdog

Working Dogs

Bernese Mountain Dog
Black Russian Terrier
Great Pyrenees
Saint Bernard
Tibetan Mastiff

Sporting Dogs

American Water Spaniel
Boykin Spaniel
Chesapeake Bay Retriever
Golden Retriever
Labrador Retriever
Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever
Wirehaired Pointing Griffon


Australian Terrier
Cairn Terrier
Dandie Dinmont Terrier
Tibetan Terrier
Norfolk Terrier
Parson Russel Terrier
Irish Terrier
Sealyham Terrier
Miniature Schnauzer
Skye Terrier
Wheaten Terrier
Wirehaired Fox Terrier
West Highland White Terrier

Toy Breeds

Shih Tzu
Tibetan Spaniel
Yorkshire Terrier

While some breeds with double coats don’t need an excessive amount of grooming, others do in order to keep their coats tangle-free. The fluffier the coat, the higher maintenance it is. Some dogs have a rougher, more dense outer coat with thick and soft undercoats resulting in the need to be regularly groomed or their coats can become matted.

Regardless of what kind of double coat your dog may have, the answer to the question, “To shave or not to shave?”  Definitely not.