Can you shave a Husky? No, you shouldn’t shave your Husky. The only person that should shave your Husky is a veterinarian for medical purposes.
As tempting as it may seem when Huskies are shedding like crazy and you’re finding loose clumps of fur all over your house, the truth is that Siberian Huskies cannot be shaved. There are several reasons, but it all boils down to their coat and how it works.
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Why can’t you shave a Husky?
Knowing not to shave a husky is the first step towards taking care of your husky. Now let’s discuss why you shouldn’t shave them.
The Husky coat
Siberian Huskies, thanks to their origins in the freezing temperatures of northern Siberia, have a very dense and thick double coat of fur. The Husky’s coat is made up of two layers, often referred to as a double coat.
The bottom layer, or the undercoat, is made up of thick, short, soft fur. In contrast, the top coat is made up of fur that is medium in length and just a little bit coarser.
How the coat helps in warm weather
Thanks to all that shedding Huskies do, their undercoat is quite a bit thinner during summer or warmer weather months. This layer of undercoat that remains helps trap a cool layer of air between the dog’s skin and coat, which helps them regulate their temperature and keeps them cool.
How the coat helps in cold weather
During the winter or the colder months of the year, the undercoat is typically quite a bit thicker.
This thick layer of downy fur helps add an extra layer that actually works to insulate or trap warm air in between the skin and the fur to help keep Huskies warm in the winter.
The outer top coat, which is sometimes called guard hair, helps protect the dog and its skin from getting wet from rain, snow and ice.
Further reading: How cold can Huskies tolerate?
What happens if you shave a Husky?
Shaving a Husky doesn’t have any benefits, but unfortunately, it can have some serious consequences. Underneath that thick coat, Huskies actually have fairly pale skin. Without their coat, they are at risk for serious sunburn and have an increased risk of skin cancer.
Further reading: Common Husky skin problems
Shedding problems get worse!
Shaving doesn’t help reduce husky shedding, and in fact, it can make shedding worse. Instead of long fur that is easy to see and clean up, a Husky with its coat shaved will shed short and sharp tiny hairs that get stuck in everything from your clothes to even in your skin!
Ruined coat texture and feel
Shaving also completely ruins the texture and feel of the coat and can even result in permanent hair loss. When a Husky’s coat is shaved, it will feel rough and almost sharp to the touch.
In fact, because the undercoat and the top coat both grow at different rates, shaving a Husky can result in regrowth that ends up with the two layers getting matted and the coat growing back very patchy.
No longer able to regulate body temperature
Another serious consequence of shaving Huskies is that they will no longer be able to regulate their own temperature. As mentioned earlier, a Husky’s coat plays an important role in temperature regulation. Without it, a Husky could easily suffer from frostbite and hypothermia in the cold and could easily overheat in hot temperatures.
Sometimes, at the vet’s office, they will shave a tiny patch of fur off a dog’s arm so they can take a blood sample or give a medication. Many owners will use this instance to set a precedent and think it must be fine for them to shave their dogs.
But in reality, it is such a small amount of fur that is removed that it is insignificant and usually grows back with no problem. Shaving really only becomes seriously problematic when done across the body.
Is it ever okay to shave a Husky?
The only time it is ever acceptable to shave a Husky is if it is recommended by a veterinarian for a true medical purpose like major surgery or to treat a skin condition. There will be the odd duck every once in a while who chooses to shave their Husky and will say that their Husky is fine.
But unfortunately, the dog still has suffered damage to its coat and is at a greater risk of being unable to regulate its temperature and suffering from hypothermia in the cold or heatstroke in the heat. Their coat just plays too important a role in their overall health to risk shaving it.
So, if your local vet recommends shaving your husky for medical reasons, we recommend investing in the best clippers for huskies.
How to groom a Husky without shaving
The good news is that though it can be time-consuming, husky grooming is easy without shaving! All you really have to do is brush! A regular bath, brush, and blow-out certainly won’t hurt, either. There are various tools you can use to help loosen shedding fur and remove it from the coat.
The best place to start is with a metal comb and a slicker brush. This will help you see how compacted or how tightly packed together the coat is and will help loosen it up if it is pretty compacted. Other tools include de-matting brushes and shedding rakes to help get out tangles, compacted mats, and shedding fur.
And, of course, a bath and a brush along with a blow dry, especially from a blow dryer that is like the ones used in dog grooming salons, will be key factors in reducing shedding and keeping a Husky’s coat in good shape.
Grooming a Husky can certainly be done at home as well as at the grooming salon! There are also some pet stores or “dog washes” where you can go to take your dog for a bath. In these places, you pay a small fee to wash your dog with professional bathing and drying equipment. Just like a do-it-yourself car wash!
- How to Take Care of a Siberian Husky?
- Facts About Siberian Husky Shedding
- Are Huskies Hypoallergenic?
- Husky Mixes That Don’t Shed
- Can Huskies Live in Texas?
- Can Huskies Live in Florida?
Final thoughts about shaving your Husky
In conclusion, it is never okay for you to shave a Siberian Husky. The only time it is acceptable is in the case of medical necessity. A Husky’s coat plays too important of a role to risk shaving the coat for the perceived “benefits” of shaving.
Can you shave a Husky?
No, you cannot shave a Husky unless it’s by a veterinarian for medical reasons.
How to shave a Husky for summer?
The first step to shaving your Husky for summer is taking your clippers and throwing them into the bin. Joking aside, you should not be shaving your Husky. Instead, learn how to keep your Husky cool in summer.
What happens if you shave a Husky?
If you shave your Husky, you could be making their shedding worse, ruining their coat texture, preventing them from being able to regulate their body temperature and increasing their risk of skin cancer.