Ever wonder why so many dogs end up being shaved in the winter time? You would naturally expect to see dogs donning longer coats during the chilly season. Many times, though, this is not the issue and there are specific reasons why. Cris Zloza of Wheaton’s Spotted Paw weighed in on these issues.
Hair/fur forms a protective barrier; many times the only protection between a dog and extreme weather conditions. When the hair/fur gets matted, it has a natural tendency to pull away from the dog’s skin. Because of this, dogs can end up with bald spots. This is better than other alternatives. It is important for a dog’s body to thoroughly protect itself.
Snow, rain, sweaters or coats, harnesses and swimming can all cause matting issues. Each must be taken in stride; pet owner follow-ups are recommended. The recommendations include:
· Removing harnesses, sweaters and coats once you get home with your pet. If you leave them on for extended periods of time, the matting can become acute.
· For inclement weather, including snow and rain, and for summertime activities, like swimming, once the dog is out of any of these conditions, the owner wants to make sure to dry the dog off and then thoroughly brush the dog out as their hair/fur will clump up otherwise.
· In the summer, if the dog gets severely matter hair/fur, it is an invitation for fleas and ticks to get into the mats and nest. This can further damage a pet’s health and well-being.
When hair/fur gets matted and the dog requires grooming, the dog must be shaved. If the pet owner insists on the dog being brushed out, this can pose great danger to your pet. How you may ask? Well, first, if the dog gets brushed out and the groomer has to pull and tug at the hair/fur, blood can pool. This is call blood hematomas. If the blood hematomas do not disperse on their own within a 24 hour period of time, the pet owner will have to take their dog to their veterinarian to have the blood sucked out. If the blood does not go away on its own, or is not physically removed by a vet, it can shoot straight to the dog’s brain, cause a stroke and kill the animal. The most common place of occurrence is in the feet and ears due to chronic matting.
Like Cris recommends, it is really important for pet owners to ensure that their dog’s hair/fur is taken care of. Dog coats that are wet or covered can cause mats that can go beyond looking bad, they can be dangerous to your dog’s health. In order to be a completely suitable pet owner, pay heed to the warnings of what serious mats can do to your dog’s health.