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A new groomer misunderstood instructions (shave mats behind ears) and just shaved my beautiful elderly golden (15 yo). He's traumatized (as am I) and I need some advice:
- What can I do to help him feel more comfortable?
- Will he need a raincoat/ sweater/ cold weather coat?
- Will his coat ever grow back?
As you might imagine, I'm beside myself -- this is not what I wanted for what is likely to be his last year. Please help.
 

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Sorry to hear this happened to your pup. Something similar happened to our old girl about 6 months before she passed. (The groomer mistook her for someone else's dog.) Her coat grew back within that 6 month period. We're in California so cold, wet weather wasn't an issue so I can't help you there. I think we were more upset than she was with the ordeal. I don't remember her acting any different. Again, I'm sorry this happened.
 

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Oh god I'm so sorry that happened. What was the groomer thinking, surely even if you had requested a full shave, a good groomer would question why you are doing this!
I think a weather coat would be good, and maybe even a thunder shirt or other kind of sweater in the house. The thunder shirt would keep him feeling secure and warm without his fur. I'm glad that 1oldparson above has said their girl's coat grew back within 6 mths.
 

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Welcome to the forum.

I'm really sorry to hear the groomer shaved your boy. His hair will grow back but it's going to take time, several months unfortunately.

I know the winters in NY can be rough, I would get a coat for him.
I hope he will be doing better soon from the ordeal of being shaved. If not, a Thundershirt may be worth trying or you can put a T shirt on him.

Dog Anxiety Vest | Shop Dog Anxiety Treatments | ThunderShirt
 

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If he's totally shaved down, I'd get him a dog coat/sweater. I'd introduce it slowly with lots of treats so it doesn't confuse him or freak him out, but it's about to get cold enough in the Northeast that a naked Golden, especially an older one, might be really unhappy in cold weather.

I'm sure at least a short coat will grow back pretty quickly, hopefully in time for the snowy weather.
 

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I'm really sorry. This was not a very bright thing for the groomer to do.

Yes, do get him a raincoat and a cold weather coat. The "Back on Track" coats are very effective, but expensive, and they need to be fitted properly. If it were my dog, I'd be asking the groomer to pay for them.

Best of luck, and I hope your guy has a wonderful winter in spite of everything.
 

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I'd ask the groomer to pay for some sort of cover for your now shorn veteran dog... what the heck was she thinking to shear a dog this time of year in NY????
Bless his heart- I hope you can keep him comfortable. And I hope you didn't pay for the groom too....
 

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I used to get my last golden shaved twice a year for years. She looked good shaved. She was a big girl. He fur always grew back nice and thick. Less fur in the house and she didn't get those hot spots as much. I never had her wear a sweater. I would get her shaved in the spring and end of summer. So by November/December she had a nice coat of hair to keep her warm. Your golden should have a nice coat by late December or January to keep her warm enough when going outside. He'll be alright.
 

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Ugg...why are so many groomers so shave happy??? So sorry this happened to your poor golden! I'm a groomer and much as I hate it, there are people who still insist on shaving goldens despite what I tell them. Does your golden have any thyroid issues? That can be a major factor as to whether or not the hair will grow back. Also, with the age of your golden, that may mean the hair will grow slower than on a younger dog. I would get a winter coat for going outside if it were me. Generally speaking, a shaved coat will grow in the undercoat pretty quickly, but the topcoat will take longer (the topcoat is the longer hair that gives the coat that shiney, glossy look. The undercoat will look dull). Sometimes the coat will grow back kinda patchy and mangy looking, especially if the dog has thyroid issues. Other times, since shaving sort of "shocks the system" the undercoat will go crazy in its effort to grow back and come in super thick. (which, incidentally, increases the amount of shedding your dog will do. Many people shave goldens cause they think it decreases shedding, but it does the opposite.) All in all, I'd say it will take at least a good 6 months or more for the coat to completely grow back. You could feed some sort of skin and coat supplement to try to boost the coat growth too.
 

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A new groomer misunderstood instructions (shave mats behind ears) and just shaved my beautiful elderly golden (15 yo). He's traumatized (as am I) and I need some advice:
- What can I do to help him feel more comfortable?
- Will he need a raincoat/ sweater/ cold weather coat?
- Will his coat ever grow back?
As you might imagine, I'm beside myself -- this is not what I wanted for what is likely to be his last year. Please help.
How heartbreaking :( A sweater/coat of sorts or thundershirt mentioned by others I think a good idea too.

I think all dog groomers should be required by law to have a letter from the owners vet to have a dog shaved over their entire body. To me the word shave means down to the skin the way a woman shaves her legs or a man his face. No breed of dogs hair should ever be completely cut that close overall unless medically necessary. JMO.
 

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Ugg...why are so many groomers so shave happy??? So sorry this happened to your poor golden! I'm a groomer and much as I hate it, there are people who still insist on shaving goldens despite what I tell them. Does your golden have any thyroid issues? That can be a major factor as to whether or not the hair will grow back. Also, with the age of your golden, that may mean the hair will grow slower than on a younger dog. I would get a winter coat for going outside if it were me. Generally speaking, a shaved coat will grow in the undercoat pretty quickly, but the topcoat will take longer (the topcoat is the longer hair that gives the coat that shiney, glossy look. The undercoat will look dull). Sometimes the coat will grow back kinda patchy and mangy looking, especially if the dog has thyroid issues. Other times, since shaving sort of "shocks the system" the undercoat will go crazy in its effort to grow back and come in super thick. (which, incidentally, increases the amount of shedding your dog will do. Many people shave goldens cause they think it decreases shedding, but it does the opposite.) All in all, I'd say it will take at least a good 6 months or more for the coat to completely grow back. You could feed some sort of skin and coat supplement to try to boost the coat growth too.
I had my last golden shaved twice a year and it did cut down on the shedding and the itching. So I don't know what your talking about that it doesn't. She was a real thick chested golden and looked great shaved. It grew back evenly every time. Now a 15 year old golden might be different. It's to bad that there was a communication break down between the owner and the groomer.
 

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I had my last golden shaved twice a year and it did cut down on the shedding and the itching. So I don't know what your talking about that it doesn't. She was a real thick chested golden and looked great shaved. It grew back evenly every time. Now a 15 year old golden might be different. It's to bad that there was a communication break down between the owner and the groomer.
It gives the appearance of less shedding because what they shed is short and not as noticeable. Gradually (or sometimes within 1 or 2 shaves) the undercoat thickens with each shave. The undercoat is what they shed, so as it thickens, there is more undercoat to shed; therefore, shedding increases as the undercoat thickens. Also, shaving can throw off the usual twice-a-year-major-shedding schedule and cause it to happen unpredictably or without ever ending and this, too, obviously increases shedding. If shedding is what you want to minimize, the best way to do it is by frequent bathing and blow drying with a high velocity dryer (which will blast out the lose undercoat) and daily brushing. I bathe mine every 2-4 weeks, but *confession* don't brush like I should-maybe once a week or once every other week. I still get lots of hair in the house, but would have less if I brushed like I should. The choice to shave or not is totally up to you, I just like to make sure people are educated before they make that choice so they know what to expect. Too many groomers either aren't educated enough about it, or don't care and just shave dogs like crazy-if you mention the word "trim" at all, it seems they take that to mean "shave everywhere." That's what frustrates me.
 
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It gives the appearance of less shedding because what they shed is short and not as noticeable. Gradually (or sometimes within 1 or 2 shaves) the undercoat thickens with each shave. The undercoat is what they shed, so as it thickens, there is more undercoat to shed; therefore, shedding increases as the undercoat thickens. Also, shaving can throw off the usual twice-a-year-major-shedding schedule and cause it to happen unpredictably or without ever ending and this, too, obviously increases shedding. If shedding is what you want to minimize, the best way to do it is by frequent bathing and blow drying with a high velocity dryer (which will blast out the lose undercoat) and daily brushing. I bathe mine every 2-4 weeks, but *confession* don't brush like I should-maybe once a week or once every other week. I still get lots of hair in the house, but would have less if I brushed like I should. The choice to shave or not is totally up to you, I just like to make sure people are educated before they make that choice so they know what to expect. Too many groomers either aren't educated enough about it, or don't care and just shave dogs like crazy-if you mention the word "trim" at all, it seems they take that to mean "shave everywhere." That's what frustrates me.
If you've never had a shaved golden. How do you know there is more shedding? We had our golden for ten years and she was shaved for nine of them twice a year. She had very short hair for several months each year and the shedding was cut way down. We have wooden floors and the hair is very noticeable. So we would of noticed more shedding. That wasn't the case. I guess we can agree to disagree.
 

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I think the other poster is a professional groomer, hence her experience with shaved dogs. Just not her own goldens. I think if it was summer, it wouldnt be such a problem. But I imagine winter in NY will be freezing very soon.
 

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Ugg...why are so many groomers so shave happy??? So sorry this happened to your poor golden! I'm a groomer and much as I hate it, there are people who still insist on shaving goldens despite what I tell them.
Why do you do it for some clients then? I would show them the door and refuse to do it. Only person shaving my dogs is a vet for medical reasons.

I have been self employed for almost 3 decades in something not dog related and think nothing of refusing a job if a customer wants something that isn't right.

Shaving is shaving, not a trim or puppy/summer cut. If the burn from the clippers doesn't hurt the sun will. I'd tell people that want a shaved Golden to get a Lab next time.

The word "shave" needs to be banned from our language when it comes to Goldens, they have their coat for a reason.
 

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Why do you do it for some clients then? I would show them the door and refuse to do it. Only person shaving my dogs is a vet for medical reasons.

I have been self employed for almost 3 decades in something not dog related and think nothing of refusing a job if a customer wants something that isn't right.

Shaving is shaving, not a trim or puppy/summer cut. If the burn from the clippers doesn't hurt the sun will. I'd tell people that want a shaved Golden to get a Lab next time.

The word "shave" needs to be banned from our language when it comes to Goldens, they have their coat for a reason.
I'm not a self-employed groomer, I work for a vet clinic, and I am not allowed to refuse to do what the client asks. Otherwise, I totally would!
 

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I think the other poster is a professional groomer, hence her experience with shaved dogs. Just not her own goldens. I think if it was summer, it wouldnt be such a problem. But I imagine winter in NY will be freezing very soon.
Of course I didn't get her shaved in December so she would have very little fur to keep her warm in January and February.
 

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I clip Goldens short, do I like to do it? Nope, but if a client can't or won't keep up with the coat care clipping the dog is a mercy. I could brush the dog out which would take five hours and cause the dog pain and of course the owners would never pay for my time. In a perfect world everyone would keep their dogs brushed out and I could just neaten up the ears and feet. Unfortunately people get dogs with show coats and then never brush them and clipping is the best solution.

I do discuss what I am going to do with clients before I clip and always advise a good bath/blow dry if the coat isn't terribly matted.

The coat may or may not grow back all the way. Unfortunately with a 15 y.o. dog it may grow back patchy. As to a jacket/sweater it depends on how much time your dog spends outside, if he runs hot or cold (which sometimes depends on his body condition (if he skinny/fat)), is he active or not. Many of the heavier dogs who are not very active and stay inside will run hot and not need a coat but a lean dog who loves to spend time outside will need one.

I am very sorry this happen to your boy. When my Dexy boy was almost 12, I tried out a furminator on his ruff and it cut a good deal of his guard hairs in the area and made it prickly, he was diagnosed with hemangio 6 weeks later and went to the bridge 6 weeks after that, he never got his ruff back and it broke my heart since I loved to rub my face in that part of his fur.
 
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I think it's not so much the show coat.... more a pretty generic golden retriever coat + age or spaying playing a role. Even if you don't neuter a dog... I think their coats still change a little (texture esp) as they get older.






^^^ These pics show how thick my Jacks' "mane" is. It wasn't like that when he was younger and in his prime. Just the natural effect of him getting older (he's going to be 8 in January).




This is the very subtle result of me grooming him up. That's using thinning shears pretty liberally to both shorten up the bib and thin it out... and blend it in so it still looks natural. So there are other options to taking clippers to a dog's coat.
 

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I am so sorry. I have an old gold too, and I would have an anxiety attack over it completely. I ordered a blanket for my old guy for Maine - first time: Dover Saddlery - Search Results for dog. I bet your dog will adjust quickly, and the winter will help his coat grow. What a big mistake by the groomer- so sorry.
 
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