If you have a long-haired dog and you were considering cutting its hair in summer to help it in hot weather, think twice. It seems logical, you might tell yourself “I would die from heat having the fur like this in this weather”. However, hair is natural to dogs and it comes with one great advantage – an isolation.
The dog can maintain its natural temperature thanks to this and it won’t even notice the hot weather outside. Of course, the same holds true in winter when it doesn’t allow cold to get under the coat. If you cut the fur, the pet would be exposed to the ambient temperatures.
Even though long hair has thermoregulation functions, the dog can’t stand longer exposure to direct sun. In hot summer days, you will do the best for your dog, if you allow it to stay in a shadow, don’t forget about longer stops when walking and go for a walk preferably in the morning and in the evening. Continuous access to water should go without saying and the water should be changed at least once every day. When it’s really hot or when the dog is under load, you can help it with a cooling vest or mat. However, watch out for ice creams and ice. These are rather bad for the organism and won’t help with overheating. You can read more about this here.
Sometimes, the cutting is done because the fur is not in a good shape. It’s felted, tangled up. There might be eczema under the coat and it is a great environment for parasites. Therefore, you shouldn’t underestimate taking care of it. When it is regularly combed, it stays functional and permeable.
You need to find the right tools for combing. Otherwise, you might do more harm than good and the coat might be damaged. A keeper, a vet or a vet shop worker should help you with that. Long hair can be brushed with a brush first, then combed using a comb with long bristles to get all the way to the skin. When the hair is really thing, a wire comb with bent ends might be helpful.
Do you have a long-haired companion at home? How does it cope with hot weather and how do you help it with it?