Grooming your pup can be an artistic masterpiece (have you ever seen these puppy blowouts?!) or simple coat-length maintenance. But during the hot, summer months many pet parents wonder whether they need to give their pup a more extreme chop. Does it keep them cooler? And does it become necessary for your dog’s well-being in some way? We asked celebrity NYC dog groomer, Jorge Bendersky all our questions about the importance of a pup’s summer haircut.
Does every dog need a summer haircut?
Turns out, your decision all depends on two universal factors: the big one is pesky parasites. “Some pet owners prefer to clip their dogs very short for the summer to make it easy to find fleas and ticks,” says Bendersky. It also depends on where your pup calls home‚dogs that live in areas that don’t get unbearably hot throughout the summer don’t need to worry about a summer trim as much. But if your pup struggles through a fair share of 80+ degree days, a shorter coat can help keep them a bit cooler.
Is it based off of breed or coat style?
Every purebred pup does have a standard grooming style set by what the breed was originally used for. However, “the haircut of each dog should accommodate the real lifestyle of the pet, not the one of their ancestors,” Bendersky says. “A dog whose outdoor life is limited to a walk on the shiny floors of a department store can sport a very sophisticated haircut since he will not be experiencing extreme situations.” But a pup who spends the dog days of summer exploring the outdoors could benefit from a trim, and their daily tick check will be just a little easier. Plus, pups who love to spend a lot of time splashing around in the water will dry off much faster with a shorter cut.
How often do dogs need to get a trim throughout the summer?
While it all depends on how fast your dog’s coat grows, Bendersky says it’s most important that your pup is regularly brushed. “A well brushed coat, free of mats and dead undercoat, will allow the air to circulate through the coat keep the dog cool. A matted dog will feel trapped inside a layer of matted coat that won’t allow the skin to breathe, elevating the body temperature and exposing the dog to get overheated,” he explains. Regular brushing also gives you the opportunity to remove any surface dirt and dust. “Moisturizing the dog’s coat with a spray bottle will make it easy to brush and will remove the dust and other allergens that will be picked up by their coat,” Bendersky says.
When should you let it grow back out?
Once the days start cooling off and your pup isn’t spending as much time outdoors it’s probably safe to resume normal grooming habits and let your pup’s fur flow. But just as humans prepare for their next big photo-op, Bendersky says, “You should plan ahead if you are thinking about having a holiday picture taken, be sure to give your dog enough time to grow his coat before picture day.” The things pet parents have to think about...
Are there any downfalls to a summer cut?
The one major downfall that plagues pups and humans alike? Sunburn! “If you are planning to clip your double coated dog short for the summer, be sure to give the dog’s skin some time to get used to the heat and sun," says Bendersky. "The use of dog safe sunblock will help protecting the areas with less hair, like ear flaps, belly skin and nose.”
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