Shaving/trimming the coat of a GSD - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-28-2008, 04:29 PM Thread Starter
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Shaving/trimming the coat of a GSD

Hi Everyone,

I've had my gsd, Heidi, for two years now. She's a beautiful sable, but her coat has become rather long. When I spayed her a long time ago, my vet actually shaved her belly and part of her back. So now, the hair on her head/neck/shoulders is much longer (some maybe 4-5" long) than the back. I wanted to get her coat trimmed at my groomer, but I was told the only thing they could do is shave her down to 1/8"-1/4" (couldn't tell for sure, but said they'd leave it as long as possible).

Anyway, has anyone ever done this? Heidi is mostly an outside dog (we have an invisible fence on our 3 acres) and I want to make sure her coat is short so she can still stay somewhat comfortable during the summer.

Thanks,
kernel
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-28-2008, 05:06 PM
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Re: Shaving/trimming the coat of a GSD

I would not shave her down that small.Remember,the coats on most dogs are an insulation from cold,but also from the heat.
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-28-2008, 05:15 PM
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Re: Shaving/trimming the coat of a GSD

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Originally Posted By: oliver annieI would not shave her down that small.Remember,the coats on most dogs are an insulation from cold,but also from the heat.
100 percent agree

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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-28-2008, 06:19 PM
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Re: Shaving/trimming the coat of a GSD

No. German Shepherds are not a breed that needs to be shaved down. Their coat protects them from the heat, cold and elements.


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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-28-2008, 06:23 PM
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Re: Shaving/trimming the coat of a GSD

I certainly agree - double coated dogs such as GSDs need all of their hair for insulation against cold as well as heat.

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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-28-2008, 06:35 PM
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Re: Shaving/trimming the coat of a GSD

Agree with the above^^ and a daily brushing should be all Heidi needs. Kacie~long coat is just as miserable in the heat as Onyx~ stock coat! They do love their pool for cooling off.

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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-28-2008, 06:46 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Shaving/trimming the coat of a GSD

good to know...didn't realize the long hair could protect them against the heat. Since a lot of her hair has never shed and been regrown, I just thought that would help her.

Thanks for all the replies!
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-28-2008, 07:24 PM
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Re: Shaving/trimming the coat of a GSD

As everyone mentioned already, the coat provides insulation from the heat. However, this only works if it is brushed out and tangle free without packed undercoat. If she is a long coated GSD you can get the butt fluff and tail trimmed to help with dingleberries. I'm a groomer and have shaved a few GSDs down before and they don't come out looking all that good IMO.

They could leave the hair longer using snap on combs (provided there is no matting or packed undercoat) but it may be choppy and uneven on a thick coated dog like a GSD.

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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-29-2008, 09:13 AM
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Re: Shaving/trimming the coat of a GSD

Most competent groomers (and owners with regular grooming using proper grooming tools) can remove the undercoat, even on a packed coat, so clipping should not be necessary but some owners request it. Heavy undercoat is what makes the dog feel the heat, not the length of the coat which is normally made up of what is called guard hairs. Even the snap-on combs (which fit onto another cutting blade to leave longer length) need the coat to be totally matt free to get an even finish and packed coat act like a matt to those combs, I also agree this is not an attractive alternative.
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-29-2008, 02:32 PM
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Re: Shaving/trimming the coat of a GSD

Quote:
Quote: ... the coat provides insulation from the heat. However, this only works if it is brushed out and tangle free without packed undercoat.
oh yeah - daily brushing not only helps your dog but it also lengthens the life of your vacuum!!

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