Goldendoodles are loved for many reasons, including their gorgeous, low-shedding curly coats. However, those beautiful curls do take a lot of maintenance to keep them looking their best, and that’s why some owners have their Goldendoodle shaved every few weeks.
So, is a shaved Goldendoodle easier to groom than one with a full coat? Can you learn how to shave a Goldendoodle? And does the dog’s coat type influence how long it takes to grow the hair after shaving?
Keep reading to find out!
Should Goldendoodles Be Shaved?
Although having Goldendoodles shaved is something that many owners like to do, is that good for the dog?
Let’s find out.
Benefits Of A Shaved Goldendoodle
First of all, let’s establish the benefits of shaving a Goldendoodle.
So, completely shaving a dog’s coat is largely for the benefit of the owner. Curly-coated Goldendoodles tend to get matted fur, and clipping off the coat can help to prevent that. Also, if your dog has a habit of finding thick undergrowth to burrow into, emerging covered in burrs and leaves, clipping off those long curls can help to stop that.
However, I recommend that you never have your dog fully shaved right down to his skin. If you have your Goldendoodle shaved, only go for a short haircut rather than having the whole lot off.
Goldendoodles are double-coated dogs. That means they have two layers of fur. The underfur is soft and fluffy, acting as insulation against the cold during winter and acting as a natural cooling system in summer.
The outer layer of fur consists of water-resistant guard hairs that stop the undercoat from getting waterlogged in wet weather or if the dog goes swimming.
During the summer months, your Goldendoodle will naturally shed his thick winter undercoat and replace it with a finer summer one. So, shaving your Doodle can actually prevent nature from doing its job.
Protection From Sunburn
As well as keeping your dog warm in winter, the fluffy undercoat helps to protect the skin from sunburn, and the sun’s harmful UV rays during hot weather.
So, if the dog is shaved right down to the skin, there’s a big risk that he will be vulnerable to sunburn and heatstroke.
Avoid Sore Spots
Finally, if your dog is shaved down to the skin, he’s vulnerable to developing sore spots. For example, if you take your dog to the beach, the sand and saltwater can make his skin itch. If the dog scratches to relieve the irritation, he might scratch right through his skin, creating sore patches that could even lead to infection.
Is There Ever A Reason To Shave A Goldendoodle?
There are a few occasions when you might need to shave your Goldendoodle.
If your dog contracts a skin infection, your vet might recommend that you have your pet shaved. Without a thick coat covering the skin and providing a warm, moist area where bacteria can flourish, it will be easier to treat the infection and get rid of it.
In severe cases of mites or fleas, it can help to shave the dog’s coat off completely. That effectively exposes the parasites so that they can be treated effectively and deprives them of the environment they need to proliferate and spread.
Your Goldendoodle’s fluffy undercoat is very prone to matting. For that reason, you need to brush your dog thoroughly, ideally every day.
Matted fur tangles so tightly that it looks and feels like a solid pad close to the dog’s skin. Once a mat has formed, it’s virtually impossible to untangle it. Severe mats cause skin irritation and can be very painful for the dog. Parasites love matted hair and will quickly set up home there, causing even more discomfort for your pet.
So, in cases where a Goldendoodle’s coat is very severely matted, your vet or groomer will recommend that the dog’s coat be shaved off completely.
Tools For Shaving A Goldendoodle
Most people take their Goldendoodle to a professional groomer to have their pet clipped or shaved should the need arise. Pro groomers generally have all the right tools for the job and are very experienced.
However, if you prefer to learn how to clip your dog, you can make some big savings in the long run.
Here’s what you’ll need for shaving your Goldendoodle:
You can buy clippers that are specifically designed for use on dogs. Most people have two sets of clippers; a small set for the dog’s head, legs, feet, and armpits, and a larger set for the dog’s body. Choose a model that has detachable blades for ease of use and cleaning. A size 10 blade is the best starting point and is the size that comes with most clipper sets.
Make sure that you don’t buy horse or cattle clippers by mistake, as these are too big, heavy, and powerful for use on a dog’s delicate, fine fur and could damage the coat.
A 10-blade leaves about 2-3 mm of fur on so it could be pretty short but it’s not a steadfast rule that it can’t be used on the body. Dogs with single-coated fur (like poodles) can definitely use a #10 blade.
You don’t want your clippers to overheat and burn your dog’s skin, so be sure to buy a supply of blade coolant. The clipping blades must remain well-oiled to keep them sharp so that they glide smoothly through the dog’s coat.
As you clip your dog, you’ll need to stop periodically to clean the blades and apply some coolant to them. Often you’ll get a starter bottle of coolant with your new set of clippers.
You’ll need a pair of grooming scissors that you can use to snip off mats and trim your Goldendoodles furnishings if he’s a curly or wavy-coated type.
Always choose blunt-ended or ballpoint scissors so that you don’t accidentally cut your dog or yourself.
Thinning shears are used to rough up the dog’s furnishings after you’ve trimmed them with your scissors so that you’re not left with harsh straight lines.
Grooming Table Or Pet Leash
Unless you have a very well-behaved Goldendoodle that stands like a rock to be groomed, you’ll need a grooming table or at the very least a pet leash.
It’s much easier to clip and groom your dog when he’s standing at your waist level than trying to kneel down and do the job from the floor. Ideally, you want a designated grooming room in which to keep the table and your other tools.
How To Shave A Goldendoodle
If you want to shave your Goldendoodle at home rather than using a groomer, here’s how to do it.
Before You Start
- Let your Goldendoodle sniff all the equipment and run the clippers so that your dog can get used to the sounds and smells. I find it helpful to take the blades out of the clippers and gently run them over my dog to give her confidence before I start clipping.
- Be sure to reassure your dog constantly with praise and treats.
- Allow a few hours for the first time you shave your dog. Be patient, and don’t try to rush. Shaving your dog gets easier and quicker the more you do it.
Shaving Your Goldendoodle
1. Bathe Your Goldendoodle
It’s a good idea to give your dog a bath before you shave him. Use a proper dog shampoo and conditioner, and be careful that you don’t get shampoo in your dog’s eyes.
You can help to prevent that by cleaning your dog’s teeth every day with a doggy toothbrush and pet toothpaste.
2. Assemble Your Clipping Equipment
Gather together all the equipment you’ll need for grooming your dog, including a good supply of treats.
Now, attach your Doodle to the dog groomer’s table. Fix the dog’s collar to the stand so that your pup can’t leap off the table if he has second thoughts about his haircut! If you think your dog might nip you, play safe and fit a muzzle.
3. Brush and Comb Your Dog
Before you begin shaving your Goldendoodle, get rid of any tangles and knots in the coat by brushing him thoroughly. If you bathe your dog, make sure that he’s completely dry before you try to brush him.
It’s essential that your dog’s coat is clean and tangle-free so that the clipper blades can go through the hair without snagging.
4. Prepare The Clippers
Fix the correct blade to the clippers. I recommend that you begin with a size 10 blade, which is the best size for regular shaving. If the dog’s hair is badly matted, you’ll need to use a shorter blade.
Apply a small quantity of coolant to the clipper blades.
Have your Goldendoodle sit down on the table.
5. Shave The Dog’s Back
Begin by shaving your dog’s back, beginning at the top and working your way downward. Trim as much of the coat as possible while the dog is sitting down.
6. Clip The Dog’s Belly
Now, have your dog stand so that you can shave his belly. Keep the hair evenly combed on either side before you begin, and keep checking to ensure that the hair length is even.
7. Shave The Paws And Legs
Change the blade to a smaller size (size 5 or 7 is good) and shave the dog’s feet. Be sure to clip underneath the paws, as these areas are very prone to matting.
Use your scissors to trim away any stray tufts of hair you didn’t get with the clippers.
8. Trim The Ears
Be very careful when trimming the dog’s ears! It’s extremely easy to accidentally cut them if your dog shakes his head at just the wrong moment.
If your puppy turns out to have a very long curly coat, you’ll need to brush him two or three times each week to keep shedding to a minimum and prevent the coat from becoming tangled.
9. Shave The Dog’s Face
Change your clipper blades to a size 9 to shave the dog’s face.
Clip the hair in a downward direction, holding the ears well out of the way so that you don’t cut them.
Use your scissors to carefully trim the beard, mustache, and eyebrows (furnishings.) Get rid of any straight lines by roughing up the hair with your thinning scissors.
10. Finishing Off
Once you’ve finished clipping your Goldendoodle, use a hairdryer to blow any loose hair off the dog.
Now, brush all parts of the dog, including his tail. Comb your Doodle to finish off the job. There should be absolutely no resistance to the comb going through the fur.
How To Care For My Goldendoodle If He Needs To Be Shaved?
The main issue for your Goldendoodle if you need to shave him is that you’ll leave him vulnerable to different climatic conditions. In summer, your dog could get sunburn or heatstroke. In winter, your pup could be too cold.
Also, Doodles can be stressed by having their hair removed. So, you’ll need to give your dog extra love and cuddles if you ever have to have him completely shaved.
Possible Problems With The Undercoat
The texture of a double-coated Goldendoodle’s fur will alter when you’ve shaved it. Once shaved, the coarse guard hairs often grow back coarse, encouraging undergrowth, twigs, and burrs to stick to them. Also, shaving off the soft, fluffy undercoat leaves your dog vulnerable to developing mats and skin irritations such as hot spots.
developing mats and skin irritations such as hot spots.
How Long Can A Goldendoodle’s Hair Take To Regrow?
If you shave your Goldendoodle right down to the skin, it can take from one-and-a-half to three months for the coat to grow back to its former curly, shaggy glory. For the fur to reach its full length, it can take up to five months or even longer.
Avoiding Heat Stroke
The best way to prevent your dog from suffering from heatstroke is to keep him out of direct sunlight on warm days.
Don’t clip your dog right down to the skin. You can clip the coat to keep it tidy and prevent it from matting but never remove the whole lot. That fluffy underfur is there to protect your pet from the heat and the sun’s harmful UV rays.
How To Keep Your Goldendoodle Cool In Summer
To keep your Goldendoodle cool in summer, there are a few things that you can do:
A supply of freshwater should be available to your dog 24/7 all year round, not just during warm weather. If your dog is deprived of water, he could very quickly become severely dehydrated, which can be fatal.
A Shorter Haircut
While shaving your dog down to the skin can actually be counterproductive when it comes to keeping your pup cool during warm summer weather, a shorter haircut can help to keep him cooler.
Cooling pads or beds can be a great way of cooling your dog on hot days. These products are usually filled with either chilled water or gel, which work to cool down your dog. You’ll need to re-cool the pads after a few hours to maintain the cooling effect.
Cooling coats work in a similar way to cooling pads and beds. The coats are filled with a special gel that reacts to the dog’s body heat to keep the animal cool in warm weather.
Cooling Shirts and Towels
The cheapest solution to the summer heat are cooling shirts and towels. Simply wet the shirt or towel, ring it out, and then put it on your dog. The fabric stays cool and damp for hours, maintaining an excellent cooling effect. If the dog’s coat is short, this method works even better since the coolness is close to the dog’s skin.
Also, the physical barrier provided by the material protects the dog from the sun’s harmful UV rays.
I hope you enjoyed our guide to shaving your Goldendoodle. If you found this article helpful, please remember to share it.
The Goldendoodle’s double coat is designed to shield the dog from the elements, keeping him warm in winter and protected from the sun’s heat and UV rays in summer. Although it’s fine to have your Doodle’s coat clipped to keep it tidy and prevent matting, you should avoid having the fur shaved off right down to the skin. That can leave your pet in danger of getting sunburnt or chilled, depending on the weather.
Please feel free to ask any questions that you have about Goldendoodle close shaves in the comments box below!