Never Shave A Husky

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Should you shave your husky? The short answer is absolutely not.

Why Can’t I Shave My Husky?

Both Huskies and Malamutes are a double coated breed, meaning they have two layers of fur. The first layer, closest to the skin is what we call their undercoat, it’s made up of fine, fluffy, and short hairs. This is the fur that sheds. This layer responsible insulating the dog by trapping air. You should never shave a husky.

The second layer is what we call the topcoat. It’s made up of courser, tougher guard hairs, true to their name they do just that, they guard your dog from the UV rays and insects. The dogs were given a coat capable of keeping them both warm in the Winter and cool in the Summer. Shaving your snow dog’s coat does much more harm than good. Owners shaving their dogs coat is a major cause of heat stroke. The only time your dogs coat should be shaved, is for medical reasons.

Shaving Your Husky Will Not Help It Cool Down

To my dismay, almost daily in the warmer months I see people posting pictures of their newly shaved huskies. I appreciate that it’s a bit of a strange concept to grasp, but unlike humans, dogs do not sweat and release heat from their skin. Dogs cool themselves primarily from panting and secondly from the pads of their paws, which are the only part of a dogs body that sweats.

Not all owners shave their snow dogs because they believe it’s best for their dog, some actually do it because they’re tired of the shedding, which is especially bad when they “blow”. Typically huskies will blow their coats twice per year, once in the Spring and again in the fall. The entire process can take up to 6 weeks and it isn’t pretty. During this time, your going to be dealing with a lot of shedding, but please don’t be tempted to shave your dog.

The final reason I see people shaving their huskies, is for fashion. This is utterly despicable, huskies are not fashion accessories.

Anatomy Of The Double Coat

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Healthy Husky Coat

Healthy Husky Coat

Groomed and free from undercoat. Cool air can reach the skin, while the suns rays bounce off.

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Matted Husky Coat

Matted Husky Coat

Coat with impacted undercoat. Cool air is blocked and the suns rays are absorbed, trapping in heat.

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Shaved Husky Coat

Shaved Husky Coat

The shaved coat causes exposure to both cool air and the suns rays, allowing for easy sunburn.

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Managing Your Huskies Coat

Undercoat RakeWhile we tell you to never shave your husky, you should regularly groom your husky to maintain his coat. During the warmer months their undercoat will come loose, and come out in clumps, this will need to be brushed out with a rake. This allows cool air to reach the skin and circulate, while keeping the topcoat intact to protect from the sun. Leaving the undercoat unmanaged will block cool air from getting to the skin and potentially causing your dog to overheat.


 

What About The Furminator?

FurminatorThe Furminator is cause of much controversy with husky owners. Some swear by it, while others complain that it causes damage by cutting and snapping the guard hairs. The truth is; there are two versions of the furminator, one for short coats and another for longer haired breeds. The version for shorter coats will undoubtably cause damage to a huskies coat. The version for longer coats can also cause damage if overused. If you’re going to use a furminator, use it minimally after the rake, just to clean things up a little. Use with caution.

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72 Comments

  1. Marcie Downie on

    Hi, I live in Australia and my Siberian husky had a previous owner, that had him shaved a couple of times before I owned him. I haven’t done it, would his fur still be protecting him from the element and insects? I hope so, thank you Marcie

  2. I’m not an expert (at all), just relocating some information I’ve seen. First, brush them! It’s been said many times in these comments, but I’m saying it again because it’s important. And brush them thoroughly. Second, your husky may enjoy being in a kiddy pool filled with ice if it’s hot out. I saw a YouTube video of a man providing this for his husky, and she enjoyed it immensely. She laid down in the pool, and let her owner cover her in a light layer of ice cubes. This may not be true for all Huskies, but I think it’s worth considering.

  3. I get the whole not shaving but somebody please explain why this causes permanent damage??? The air follicles aren’t damaged by a close trim. Why doesn’t it grow back right?

  4. Oh thank you so much for this piece of information, because initially I thought my husky living in a hot climate country will be suffering because his coat is too thick, and shave his fur every few months. Thank you for letting me know this.

  5. Good evening. I have a question for You.
    I have a siberian husky for around 10 years, really rare. He grew up here (ex Yugoslavia, Montenegro) which is not quite nice place for them but he is doing just fine.
    He had a tumor few months ago, on his back, spine. Veterians are not good here so the woman who was trying to heal him, cutted his hair too much, 0.5 cm near his skin.
    I’m afraid his hair won’t grew anymore ’cause I can’t see any progress.
    Can you tell me anything that could help his hair grow?
    Don’t mind my english. I’m trying as much as I can.
    Thank you very much.

  6. I would like to add that if you bought the Furminator online you may have gotten a knockoff which causes pulling and cutting. We bought ours from an Amazon seller and it turned out to be fake even though the packaging and everything was identical to the real thing. After buying one from a local retailer it worked as a completely different tool. You get what you pay for.

  7. Me too im a bit worried that my 6mos old husky has been shaved for some medical reasons..she has hotspots and the vet told me its better to shave the coat for better treatment..but im so sad every time i looked at her, would the coat regrow back to its normal coat and if ever, how many months would it take? Would appreciate much if any one could reply..my heart aches by just looking at my beloved dog..and i heard vco/coconut oil would help a lot, do you think it would really help?tnx

  8. We were given a 3 year old husky that had just been shaved to our dismay. Her owner was moving and couldn’t take her. She has started scratching but has no fleas. Is there anything we can get to put on her skin?

  9. I’m the idiot who let and helped my X shave my Husky. So what now? He has spotty hair growth and looks like he has mange. A while back he had some surgery, and in that spot of the incision his hair grew back in a matter of weeks. What can I do if anything to promote regrowth without surgery or causing him pain?

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