Very few of you can deny that you’d easily spend hours and hours just petting and cuddling your dog. And there’s a good reason for this! Scientific study has recently shown that running your fingers through your dog’s hair has a calming and anti-depressant effect. A dog’s coat is one of its most distinctive traits, and canines boast a wide variety. Are you familiar with the different hair types?
It is very difficult to properly classify canine coats, the range is huge. There are, however, clearly identifiable differences and many dog parlours make use of this particular categorisation method:
1) LONG HAIR. This category includes the Shih-Tzu, Maltese and Golden Retriever, just to name a few. Long-haired dogs need to be brushed every day to keep their good looks and prevent the formation of painful knots. Dogs belonging to this category also have a very thick undercoat. Although this may seems strange, these dogs lose a lot less hair than smooth or short-haired dogs. You can use a St. John’s Wort shampoo when it’s time to give them a bath!
2) SMOOTH COAT. Flat, very dense and close to the skin hair characterizes dogs like the Doberman and Dachshund. Dogs with this type of coat shed and grow hair all year round, although in summer they likely shed a bit more. This means that a good weekly grooming session with a special glove is a must.
3) SHORT-HAIR. This type of coat features slightly longer hair than the shorter smooth coat, and there is often also an undercoat. If you have a short-haired dog at home, your vacuum cleaner is probably the appliance you use the most, seeing as the thick undercoat tends to shed constantly! Your dog will need to be brushed with greater frequency, especially when shedding time rolls around. An example of this category includes Labradors and Beagles.
4) SEMI-LONG HAIR. German Shepherds, Border Collies and Huskies are prime examples of this coat type. The upper coat is more or less long and water-resistant, the undercoat is shorter but thick and woolly. Knots form easily in these coats so you need to dedicate plenty of TLC to your dog a couple of times a week with a wire-pin brush followed by a softer bristle brush.
5) FEATHERED COAT. Dogs with this type of coat have fringes on their ears, legs and tummy. The hair on the rest of their body is usually short and more or less wiry, like the Setter or Cocker Spaniel. You need to brush the fringes out every day using a pin brush and bristle brush.
6) WIRE COAT. This type of hair is especially hard and you need to use a stripping comb instead of a normal comb or brush to prevent mats and tangles. Stripping means manually thinning the coat, something your dog groomer usually does best. Terriers and Schnauzers belong to this particular category. Mint shampoo is ideally suited to this type of hair.
7) CORDED COAT. These coats are very long, with lovely characteristic curls or flat matting. Like human dreadlocks, their grooming should be restricted to regular shampooing, they should not be brushed or combed. If the curls or matting gets too thick, use your fingers to carefully open them up and create separate smaller cords. Examples of dogs with corded coats: Komondor and Corded Poodle.
7) CURLY HAIR. Poodles and Lagotto Romagnolos belong to this nice and woolly category of dog. Their undercoat does not shed but knots into the overcoat and becomes a bit like felt. They need to be periodically shorn. Dogs with curly hair should be groomed every week with a brush and comb to maintain their good looks. The best type of shampoo to keep them clean is a mallow-based shampoo.
Coming soon on the blog, our other social networks and on YouTube: keep your eyes open for the videos we made featuring Luca, our expert groomer. He’ll give you all kinds of great tips on how to best take care of your dog’s coat. Keep on following us!