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Old 06-13-2011, 09:33 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Shaving a poodle for summer?

My poodle pup, Trevvor, has about an inch or so of hair (maybe a teeny bit more) on his back with about 1.5" on his legs. I live in Texas, so it gets really really hot in the summer. I've always read/been told that it doesn't matter how long the dog's hair is, and that the length can actually protect them from the heat. However, when we've been walking for a while and I put my hand on his coat, it feels really really hot. I think it's because he's black and therefore absorbs more heat; my white Lhasa has the same amount of hair, if not more, and his coat never feels as warm as Trevs. My question is this: should I go ahead and shorten him up a lot or is it ok to leave him the way he is? He doesn't pant excessively or anything; I just don't want him to be more uncomfortable than he has to be, even if that means cutting off his pretty hair. After all, it grows.... Thanks in advance!
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Old 06-14-2011, 05:53 AM   #2 (permalink)
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think about it this way: how do you feel when your hair is on your neck or down your back (if you have long hair) when it is hot out? hair keeps the heat in. that is why we keep them longer in the winter. i say shave him. here's a clip of my jessie in her recent miami clip. her poms are long and her top knot was kept long, just triming the fringe of her ears, but her body was brought down by a #7F

Shaving a poodle for summer?-jessie-miami-cut-home.jpg
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Old 06-14-2011, 06:22 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I've kept my head shaved bald for years. Mostly I do it every other day or so but sometimes it builds up to a 5 or 6 day 'growth'. Maybe a quarter or three eights of an inch at most.

If that happens in the cooler months and then I shave it clean u would not believe how much it affects the chill on my scalp. Just that quarter inch of hair is enuf to keep my head warmer. Believe it or not, the difference is quite noticeable.
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Old 06-14-2011, 01:06 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I have 2 black poodles, so I sympathize with your hot pooch and I clip them quite short for the summer - but I wouldn't go shorter than 1/2" to protect from sunburn. Just keep them clipped every couple of weeks and they are comfortable.
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Old 06-14-2011, 02:43 PM   #5 (permalink)
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There are great shorter clips that have a great deal of style. A nice #3 body & then fuller legs like a "1/4" SOC should be really nice. Short but doesn't have the toothpick look. The "Summer/Miami" is nice if you like the leg poms which I am a fan of over short pick legs anytime.
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Old 06-19-2011, 02:13 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I live in Canada, and I'm shaving my Toy down for the summer when it's warm, and by the time Fall/Winter comes, she will have a longer, warmer coat. Perfect!
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Old 06-20-2011, 01:24 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Thanks for the advice everyone!! I decided not to shave him, (I'm trying to grow him out into a Modern...)but just make more of an effort to keep him inside during the really hot parts of the day; so no walkies at 4 in the afternoon. We'll go at 8 instead and try swimming at 4.
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Old 07-04-2011, 07:33 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Personally I don't believe in comparing how heat and long hair affects us versus dogs because we sweat and shed heat through our skin, whereas dogs not so much as us, more through panting and areas like their feet.
That's been my understanding, anyways.
I think either way, your dog will be hot in the heat and sun and cold if it's cold out. I do think that more fur in the winter is going to hold heat closer to the dog's body. But in the summer, I feel that cutting the fur short exposes the dog's skin to the sun more than it helps to keep them cool. With a shorter coat, the dog is probably more likely to cool down once it lays back down on a cold floor in the shade after a walk or romp in the sun. But I'm just not positive that it really is effective in keeping the dog cooler in general.
Perhaps it's the human projection that justifies all the cute haircuts
Either way the dog should be kept comfortable during the height of the seasons. A miami in the summer and a full coat in the winter surely has its benefits, but I think it's mostly relative and they aren't humans.
I, too am on the fence about what clip to have him put in this coming Saturday...

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Old 07-04-2011, 08:12 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 4Paws View Post
Personally I don't believe in comparing how heat and long hair affects us versus dogs because we sweat and shed heat through our skin, whereas dogs not so much as us, more through panting and areas like their feet.
That's been my understanding, anyways.
I think either way, your dog will be hot in the heat and sun and cold if it's cold out. I do think that more fur in the winter is going to hold heat closer to the dog's body. But in the summer, I feel that cutting the fur short exposes the dog's skin to the sun more than it helps to keep them cool. With a shorter coat, the dog is probably more likely to cool down once it lays back down on a cold floor in the shade after a walk or romp in the sun. But I'm just not positive that it really is effective in keeping the dog cooler in general.
Perhaps it's the human projection that justifies all the cute haircuts
Either way the dog should be kept comfortable during the height of the seasons. A miami in the summer and a full coat in the winter surely has its benefits, but I think it's mostly relative and they aren't humans.
I, too am on the fence about what clip to have him put in this coming Saturday...
That's kinda what I was thinking, but everyone was telling me that it applied only to double coats...I put mine into a modern, which is pretty short on the back/sides with longer neck/legs. I figured that would give him enough short areas to help a bit.
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Old 07-04-2011, 08:17 AM   #10 (permalink)
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I live in New England and i've had poodles for abvout 20 years. Every summer they get your basic #5 on the body, a #15 on the face and feet, and scissor the rest. In fact they get the same cut in the cold months too. LOL If it's really chilly out, we just add a sweater. It's easy to take care of and it works for us.
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