As the hot weather approaches, some Pug owners will shave their dogs to help keep them cooler and help reduce shedding. But should you shave a Pug? The Pug fur plays a huge role in protecting your pooch.
Can I Shave My Pug
There are NO benefits to shaving a Pug. Your dog’s double layer coat is vital for their protection and overall health. Before you even think about shaving your Pug, you need to understand why these dogs have a double layer coat.
We’ll discuss some of the reasons you should NEVER shave a double-layer coat and how to properly maintain a Pugs coat.
Here are some of the best brushes for Pugs to help you care for your dog’s coat.
What You Need To Know Before Shaving A Pug
It is not recommended to shave doubler layer coated dogs because their fur helps insulate them in the Winter and keeps them cool in the summer.
Even if your dog doesn’t spend a lot of time outdoors, you should avoid shaving them. Let’s take a closer look at the double coat.
Double Coat Pug
Pugs have two types of fur – a soft undercoat and topcoat aka (guard hairs). Here’s how to tell if your Pug has a double layer or not.
Related: Do Pugs Have Hair Or Fur?
Dogs have 6-10 layers of skin, whereas humans have 16-20. The guard hairs help protect your dog’s skin from the harmful UV rays.
Without both layers of skin, your dog will not be able to cool themselves properly in the sun and they will be more vulnerable to developing sunburns and skin cancer.
Understanding Your Dog’s Undercoat
Think of your dog’s undercoat like a “coozie” in the Summertime and a layer of insulation in the cold winter months.
The undercoat is shorter and denser than the topcoat and protects your dog from the ever-changing temperature changes.
These brachycephalic dogs require special attention in the hot temperatures. Read this article to help keep your Pug cool in the Summer.
Other Reasons Not To Shave Double Coat Pug
Besides keeping your dog comfortable in the winter or summer, there are several other reasons you should never shave a Pug.
#1 Shaving Can Increase Chances of Sunburn And Skin Cancer
The top layer of fur helps protect their skin from harmful UV light, which has been known to cause cancer in humans.
Just like humans, dogs can form actinic keratosis (AK) which is a crusty skin lesion that may cause cancer.
When you shave your Pug, you’re leaving their skin exposed to the sun, which can increase their chances of developing painful sunburns or skin cancer.
While all Pugs are susceptible to sunburn, fawn Pugs are more at risk.
#2 It Can Damage Their Fur
If you do decide to shave it, the hair may not grow back the same as it was. It may take ages to grow back and if it does, there’s no guarantee that it will grow back normally.
The undercoat is short and dense, while the top coat longer and longer. The topcoat will grow at a faster growth rate than the undercoat. Meaning that your Pug could be left without an undercoat for protection.
Shaving can cause damage to the fur in that it grows back to course, fluffy, thin, different color, uneven or patchy.
Shaving a double coat dog removes their natural insulation and causes their system to work overtime to produce a new coat. The new coat will consist of a thicker undercoat with a mix of short guard hairs.
This new coat will act like a sweatshirt, in which it will retain water, mud, and attract burrs and hitchhikers. It will cause them to stay wet for hours when they are out in snow, rain or cold temperatures, and the thickness will make them extremely hot in the summer. (Source)
#3 Shaving Won’t Stop The Shedding Problem
Pugs shed more than other breeds and tend to shed more in the Winter and Spring. Some people believe that if they shave their Pug, their dog will stop shedding, however, some experts say that it won’t help.
Shaving your dog will just cause your pooch to shed hairs that are shorter and blunter. This makes them stick to your furniture, clothing, carpet, and etc a lot easier!
All dogs shed, and it is just a normal process seen in all animals. Instead of getting your dog shaved to get rid of unwanted hair, you may want to get your dog professionally groomed.
Regular grooming can help remove all the dead uncoat, leaving your Pugs fur shiny and healthy. This is not a hard breed to maintain, you can even groom your Pug at home.
Related: How Often Should You Bathe A Pug?
#4 It Won’t Help With Your Allergies
Some people believe that if they shave their Pug, it will help with their allergies. However, what you’re actually allergic to the dander on the dog.
Pet dander is tiny particles of skin that all animals shed. Some dander is large enough for us to see with our eyes, and others are so small, you can’t see them with a microscope.
There are several ways to treat dander and they are as follows:
Regular Grooming: Just like humans, dogs can get dandruff if we don’t wash our hair. The same thing can happen to dogs. Regular grooming and brushing will help distribute the coat’s natural oils and massage the skin.
Use A Humidifier: Low humidity can cause doggie dandruff. Try using a humidifier that has a good HEPA filter in the same room where your dog sleeps. This will increase the moisture and can help soothe your four-legged friend’s seasonal dandruff.
Your Dog’s Diet: Some kibble and commercial dog food have been known to increase dander. Make sure that you’re pup is eating a well-balanced diet with the proper nutrients. This is one of the reasons many people are home cooking for their pets.
Related: Fresh Cooked Food For Pugs
Try Using Soothing Oatmeal Dog Shampoo: The pH level in your dog’s skin is different from the pH of human skin. Make sure you’re using a shampoo that is specifically formulated for dogs. I’d highly recommend a good oatmeal dog shampoo that can help comfort your pooch’s itchy skin.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Talk to your veterinarian about adding an omega-3 fatty acid supplement to your pet’s diet. It is a great way to help promote healthy skin and coat, which will result in less dander.
#5 Shaving Exposes Them To Bug Bites and More
Your dog’s coat protects them from bugs, insects, and parasites. A shaved dog will be more susceptible to bug bites and being infected by parasites.
Final Word On Shaving Pugs
Pugs are indoor dogs and there is no reason to shave them.
If you do decide to shave your Pug for medical reasons or personal reasons, you’ll want to make sure you don’t leave them outside in the sun for longer than 10 minutes.
You may also want to consider using sunscreen that is designed for dogs.
Everyone has their own opinions about shaving and not shaving their Pug. Most experts will recommend not shaving a Pug, but it really comes down to personal preference.
References and Further Reading
Animal Kingdom – Dog Breeds That Don’t Shed A Lot