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seVen's avatar

Alaskan Malamute Breed Question?

Asked by seVen (3461points) July 5th, 2009 from iPhone

My dog , an Alaskan Mal has a thick coat and undercoat. Can I cut it especially now that it’s summer time? Will it look doofy if I cut it’s coat to like 2–3 inches long, will it’s coat grow back to it’s natural color [white & gray]?

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13 Answers

Tink's avatar

It would probably look uneven, I had a Husky and when we cut it, it looked like that but it will grow back

Lovey_Howell's avatar

Yes you can have your dog’s fur clipped. I would strongly recommend not using scissors because your dog’s skin is not that thick, easily torn and one loud noise or startle and you could do plenty of damage I’ve seen it happen.

Yes it will look goofy :-P but he might enjoy not having that heavy coat in the summer. Usually they do grow back just the same but I have seen some that take a long time to grow back and I know one dog whose fur never grew back after being shaved.

Does your dog sing? Malmutes are well known for their singing :-)

chyna's avatar

I saw a golden retriever shaved all the way down yesterday. It looked pretty bad as they left the tip of his tail and around his ankles. He looked like a poodle wannabe. And he looked embarrassed.

YARNLADY's avatar

I’ve heard that with the undercoat, they don’t need clipped, but it would be best to ask your vet or groomer for a definitive answer. Hubby used to shave our 1/2 rotty, 1/2 Akita every year. We have a professional dog groomer table and clipper set.

BBSDTfamily's avatar

Be nice and shave him, and yes it will grow back just the same as it was.

rooeytoo's avatar

Here is the problem, it is extremely difficult to get a blade THROUGH the undercoat, so the blade either goes directly against the skin and the dog ends up shaved. Gives him no protection against the sun. Yes it will grow back but he needs sunscreen in the meantime and also protection against fleas.

It is preferable instead to wait until he has shed the bulk of his undercoat, then take him to a groomer. If they bathe and then use a super blower they should be able to get out the rest, then they can use a #4 or a plastic blade and the result should be a coat that is only an inch or two long.

This doesn’t look as hideous as a shaved mal, still gives him protection from the sun.
It is a hell of a job though, so be prepared to spend some bucks at the groomer.

In the meantime, get yourself a rake and work on him to get rid of as much undercoat as you can. I have akitas and we go through the big shed 2x a year when we are all knee deep in fluff! I live in the tropics and have never shaved him, I just brush out the undercoat and then the top coat is relatively fine and the heat does not bother him. Actually he seems to like it, I often find him lying in the full sun.

loser's avatar

I sure can’t add anything to this! Great answers!!!

Darwin's avatar

One of our dogs has one of those thick, double coats. It is pointless to even try to clip her fur as long as the undercoat is present – it literally broke our vet’s razor when he had to shave a patch on her hip to check out a hot spot.

I would follow @rooeytoo‘s advice to brush out the undercoat and see how your dog does with just the top coat. If heat is still a problem, then consider going to a groomer.

DrBill's avatar

Why would you want to?

BBSDTfamily's avatar

Please make sure your dog is not outside during the day if you cannot cut his hair very short. Large breeds, even short-haired breeds, can easily overheat in the sun and die of heat exhaustion.

Trendge's avatar

It probably wouldn’t look very good but the dog would be a lot cooler. I bought my malamute a kiddie pool for only 9 bucks and put up a tarp for shade and that seems to work well.

MaryW's avatar

Yes it will grow back just fine but it should be cut with a medium to long cutting blade. Be careful around all four “armpits” and genitals. The undercoat is very thick so a proper clipping is best. Be careful not to let the blades get hot as they will burn the skin. Leave the head and neck to the collar as is and leave the tail as is. Really a professional clipping is best, be sure that you opt for the ¼ inch or more left on. I use a medium blade on our horse clipper for our Great Pyrenees cross and it takes about an hour. I was a professional dog and horse clipper for 15 years. It is hard messy work but great for the animals.
Do not leave your dog out in the sun for longer than a half hour until his skin is covered again. Should only take a couple weeks. @rooeytoo has a GA

bags's avatar

They had to do a bit of abdominal surgery on my Mal and shaved his belly. It’s been 8 months and only now is it beginning to grow back. My vet says that isn’t all that unusual for arctic breeds. Mals aren’t intended for hot weather. Mine stays in his air conditioned house during the Summer….unless the Grandkids are here.

If you strip out that undercoat your dog should be just fine come summer. Unless you live in Florida or Arizona or whatever….

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