When the sun begins to sneak out after winter, people start to shed their layers in favor of dresses and shorts. Often, when we switch out our winter wardrobe for our summer wardrobe, we think Hm! I should probably do the same for my German Shepherd! You then take him to the groomers and request that he get shaved and the stylist informs you that this would not be a good idea considering your dog has a double-coat.
You look at her quizzically and ask, “What is a double coat?”
Dogs with a double coat have – you guessed it! – two coats; a top, tougher coat often referred to as “guard hairs“, and a soft, downy undercoat beneath the top this. The undercoat consists of finer hairs that act as insulation for your dog and are the ones that thicken up in the winter and shed in the summer, while the guard hairs act as a shield from the sun and other environmental elements and typically do not shed. While they don’t typically shed, they will release the under coat around the summer and can become one hairy mess.
With some double coat breeds once they get shave their coat will not grown back in correctly. Some of the time it will grow in too thick or in patches. It is definitely a great idea to get regular grooming with your double coated pooch. Once that under coat starts to come out, brushing will become key. Unfortunately with double coats, matting is easily hidden in the under coat. We use the Furmimator products here and have noticed a huge decrease in shedding.
There are many grooming options out there for double coated pets. We hope this will help you make the right grooming decision for you and your pet.