Often clients request that their double coated dog be shaved for the summer thinking that it will keep them cooler. Although shaving is a common practice in many grooming salons, it is controversial. For one it may ruin the coat and the coat may never grow back to what it used to be. The dog’s skin can easily sun burn because the guard hair that was protecting the skin is not there any more. De-shedding however, is an excellent and safe practice in which the undercoat is removed and the guard hair remains providing insulation to the dog’s skin and protecting it from potential melanoma. Double coated breeds are Poms, Huskies, Samoyeds, Collies, Shelties, Akitas and, of course, some mixed breeds.
Look at the undercoat in the first picture. It is seen on the back of the head, the neck, the back of the dog, and the undersides where the hair is packed tightly giving it a wooly appearance. In the lower part of the picture, the undercoat is removed. As a result, the hair is fluffy, the coat is healthy looking and the dog is much more comfortable. Notice how the coat color is enhanced.