Many dog breeds have a double coat, but even experienced dog owners don’t know how to properly care for it. A Shiba Inu coat falls under the double coat.
A dog who has a double coat has both a soft undercoat and a long, thicker outer coat. These coats have different purposes that protect the dog from the environment.
The outer coat is stiff and straight while the undercoat is thick and plush. They regularly shed the whole coat but shedding becomes heavy during the spring and fall.
To properly take care of your dog’s hygiene and health, read on to find out how to care for a Shiba Inu’s coat.
What does a Shiba Inu’s double coat do?
A Shiba Inu’s double coat means that they have two layers of fur that protect them. Each of these layers of fur serves a different function in protecting your dog.
The undercoat is the fur closest to your dog’s skin. This is also referred to as secondary hair and is typically fluffy, soft, and grows close together. The function of the undercoat is to keep your Shiba Inu warm during the colder months.
The outer layer of fur is called the guard hair and is also known as the outer coat or primary coat. It’s coarse and wiry. It protects your dog’s undercoat and skin from getting wet and dirty.
Additionally, don’t shave your Shiba Inu’s double coat. They have double coats for a reason. If you are worried that they might get too hot because of their fur, there’s no need to fret. A well-groomed dog is able to regulate its body temperature according to its needs.
Your Shiba Inu double coat help keeps it warm when it’s cold and helps keep it cool when it’s hot.
Care for your Shiba Inu coat
Here are some dos and don’ts in taking care of a Shiba Inu coat.
Regular Brush and Bathing
During the summertime, when the heat is at its full blast, your Shiba will shed. Maybe a bit too much to your liking and it can be very tempting to shave their fur off to help them with the head and to decrease the amount of shedding.
But as mentioned above, don’t shave unless it is necessary to do so. There will be special circumstances where you are allowed to shave your Shiba Inu’s coat, such as preparation for surgery, matted hair removal, or treatment for canine skin disease.
The solution to your shedding problems is regular bath and brushing, especially during the summer. Shedding increases when it’s too hot but with a regular and scheduled bath, you’ll be able to rid of the loose hair before they even have the chance to shed anywhere.
After bathing and making sure your Shiba Inu is dry, brush through their double coat. Like bathing, you’d be able to get rid of the loose hair to avoid having them fall off everywhere around the house.
While brushing, make sure to be extra gentle. Aggressively brushing can hurt your dog and when your dog associates brushing with pain, it will be challenging to do in the future.
For good hygiene, properly groom your Shiba Inu.
Take them to the groomers
If you are not confident in your bathing and brushing skills or if you don’t have the time to do this regularly, take your Shiba to the groomers.
Professional groomers know what to do with all types of dog coat. There are more knowledgeable than we are and even more skillful than experienced dog owners.
They will be able to remove shed hair more thoroughly and make your Shiba Inu’s fur shiny and healthy. They know which part of the fur is the thickest and they make sure to bathe and brush completely and carefully.