Can I Shave My Golden Retriever?

When the summer months come around and it starts to get hot like the devil's breath. we often think less hair, less heat. Now. most of us have pets and we like to treat our pets just like family.

If we don't want to be hot, we wear less clothing, so then how about our pets and more specifically if we have a dog with a long Goat of fur? Not just any dog with long fur. we are talking Golden Retrievers!

Hmm...let's shave them! Often times we like to think we are doing our furry friends a favor but sometimes we are not.

should you shave your golden retriever

Should You Shave Your Golden Retriever?

If you haven't guess the answer by now already. The answer is a hard flat no. nape. nada. and any other language you can think of.

Golden retrievers are designed to have a long coat. It actually serves insulation for them, but if you were to shave it off, you will only be making your pet hotter. Thanks to you, you just exposed your golden retriever to direct UV rays!

However. do not beat yourself up about it. I have made this mistake to and lots of other people have too. It is common to see people shaving their pets thinking its the right thing to do. It's just a simple case of wrong logic.

In this article. you will find out why you are doing more harm than good to your furry friend.

happy golden retriever coat

When It Is Okay To Shave Your Golden Retriever?

Now you might be wondering. okay well don't shave but ... maybe I should just do a little trim. Nope. don't even think about it. And if you are, quit thinking about it.

Sometimes your retriever's coat can become unruly, matted or all kinds of ugly mess because maybe you have forgotten to brush him or her regularly due to your schedule has gotten busy so this is the time you need to take your retriever to a groomer (a professional one too. not your friend around the way who trims dogs every now and then).

The point is, if you start messing with your dog's fur, you will mess up the growth function.

Why Are Shaving Golden Retrievers Popular?

Okay, well if there can be so many problems in shaving our Golden Retrievers why is it so common?

A lot of times it has to do with, well people shave other breeds like Shih-Tzus and poodles! Think about it though, Shih-Tzus doesn't have fur. We all know that is straight-up hair!

Their fur continuously grows just like human hair and if you own one. you know how it is. You have to constantly keep cutting it to maintain it or sometimes you let it grow super long and put a pink bow on them.

These types of breeds have hair, but Golden Retrievers are what you call double-coated dogs which are dogs that basically have two layers of fur.

Double layer coat golden retriever

Double Layered Fur Friend

So as I mentioned, some breed of dogs have hair and some breeds have fur double-coated. It is a safety function for the dog which protects them from exposure of the sun, to prevent sunburns.

The top coatis more of a coarse texture and the undercoat is soft like clouds. Its job is to keep your golden retriever's skin dry. The coarse texture also has oils just like we have oils for our hair.

These 2 layers work together to insulate your furry friend so shaving that off is going to be like you sitting in a football stadium with the sun directly shining on the top of your head. Do you want that? I didn't think so. (no shade) Also. Labradors are another breed that has 2 layers of fur, so better not shave them either!

Let's Talk about Those UV Rays

First and foremost. UV rays are very harmful, they can give you skin cancer and cause you to age faster. Just like our skin can be damaged from those harmful UV rays your furry friend's skin can be damaged too.

Their 2 layer design is not only a powerful UV-ray blacker but also protects your retriever from pain in the ass sunburns.

Sunburns are not fun. I had a few of those myself so I'm pretty sure they will be unpleasant to my dog as they are to me. These can create more problems such as heat strokes.

No Matter the Season, Shaving Your Retriever is a Bad Decision

Not only you can cause problems in the summer by removing your retriever's 2 layered Coat. but it can also cause problems in the winter too.

Now that you been messing with the growth pattern of your dog's fur messing with the outer coat. you caused a domino effect and now the undercoat will mat up and get ugly.

Your dog will not be able to regulate their own temperature properly and in the summer they will be panting like crazy cause they hot, and in the winter they will be shattering their teeth and shivering!

By the way, in case you have shaved your retriever already. dogs use panting for regulating body temperatures. This is not by all means effective at all. Just like how we sweat, it is our method to regulate our body temperature in the heat but we can still get hot or end up passing out.

golden retriever summer

Tips to Keep your Retriever Cool for the Summer

I have the answer if you are worried about how to keep your retriever cool in the summer since shaving is the worse way to go

1. Put their Water Bowl in the Shade

Take a nice cool water bottle with you in your car and you leave it in your car only to find that now your water is now warmish and I don't know about you. but I like my water nice and cold.

So do your retriever a favor and don't have their water bowl directly in the sun. I'm pretty sure they will thank you with a bunch of loving licks

2. Don't Feed Your Dog Before or After the Heat

What happens when we eat and run outside in the heat? Think about it. Yep. It will cause your dog to have a running stomach and your dog body temperature will have a sudden increase.

golden retriever winter

Tips to Keep your Retriever Warm for the Winter

1. Bring them Indoors

If your retriever is usually an "outside" type of dog. Meaning they are in your backyard all the time in the dog house. Now is the time to bring them inside.

Don't take a chance on leaving them outside thinking. "oh it's not that cold out they will be fine" because you might come back and wonder why your dog has dilated pupils, stiff muscles, and looking like he or she is about to meet death.

2. Take them Outdoors but Not Alone

Wait. I know. I know what you are thinking. I just told you to bring your retriever indoors and now I am telling you to take them outdoors. You see your golden retriever already has a 2 layered coat that provides enough protection to keep it warm and retrievers will do their activities just as normal in the winter but just make sure you are outside with them and don't be out for long periods of time.

When your retriever is ready to come back inside from the snow. they will be wet. Make sure you wipe them off because that is the loving owner thing you are supposed to do!

When you wipe off your retriever this will remove unwanted mess from their coats. These unwanted substances such as chemicals and salt can be irritating to the skin if left on the body for a long time and we know dogs love to lick.

3. Let Them Cuddle With You

Let your retriever snuggled up with you sometimes. Don't be so quick to brush them off when they come around you to jump on the couch with you as you are on your laptop typing away. Our human bodies radiate off heat. and so much heat that we can boil water with our heat. Share the warmth and love!

4. Make Sure Your Home Is Warm

If your clog is in the home with you chatting their teeth. then that is a problem. Make sure you keep yourself and your dog cozy. If it is Gold outside turn the heat up but not too much but enough to where it is warm to ensure comfort for you and your pet.

5. Put Clothes on Them

This is another fun option. You can have your dog wearing sweaters or booties made for them if they are trained to wear clothing. I know some dogs just kick the apparel off or try to wiggle their way out of it.

I hope this article helps and is very informative and opens your eyes to the dangers of shaving your golden retriever!


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