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To Clip or not to clip , to shave or not to shave... and just how short is too short.....

Ok firstly lets get a bit of terminology sorted out...Shaving is when both the outter and inner coats are completely shaved off basically to skin level, usually leaving some form of " lion mane" around the head area. Clipping is the removal of excess long outter fur only. Some clips are purely to remove excess fur and tidy up genital/ foot and bottom area. There are raging conflicts going on out in doggy world right now.... One school of thought is that the animal has long fur, its hot therefore shaving cools the animal as it removes the " blanket" that it is carrying around. However the other side to this is the fact that long haired dogs are supposed to be long haired dogs , That the hair actually protects them form heat as it acts like a thermostat protecting them from the heat. Also by shaving the dog you are exposing them to harmful UV rays and potential sunburn and sunstroke (unless of course you are using our sunscreen). One article I read put it really well... You wouldnt run down to the beach for your first time in the smallest bathers you could find , on the hottest day and not wear any sunscreen or sunprotection.. This is basically what happens with a shaved dog. Now we have a shaggy hound, who's hair grows very fast and as he is mixture of thre different breeds, actually has three different kinds of fur on his body. When this gets too long it matts ( no matter how often we brush him) and as he plays rough every day with his best friend Roger the Labrador, the slobber doesn't help either. We choose to clip him. Not Shave but clip to keep his coat neat and tidy, keep the matts under control and yes in Summer he does appear to be cooler. This may not be the case with all animals but it works for ours. At the end of the day this is YOUR furry friend and you know them better than anyone. Have you noticed a great difference in the dogs ability to regulate temperature when they have been clipped? A dog will cool itself by panting and whether they have long fur or not will not affect the fact that they pant. Personally Im all for a certain amount of clipping, this guards against matted fur, its easier to check for ticks and makes washing and grooming a lot easier. I really don't believe shaving is in any dogs best interest, but again this is your furry (or lack of furry as the case maybe). If you are unsure about your breed of dogs ability to regulate heat, talk to a breeder or dog club. When all is said and done its about having happy healthy furries. Just because others do one thing or another doesn't mean you have to. You furry trusts you to do the best you can for them . For some that may mean doing nothing more than regular brushing and the occasional tidy up round the nether regions... what ever works for your furry is the right thing to do!!

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