Are long coats really insulating...? - Page 2 - Havanese Forum : Havanese Forums
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post #11 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 12:38 PM
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No Havanese expert here but I am the 3rd. owner of a 2yr. 3 mo. I got him at 9 months. One of the previous owners did not want to brush him and they had him shaved down(right down to probably nothing) and his head, ears beard were very short. This was probably 2 months before I got him. He barely had any hair when I got him from the breeder. He was pretty sad looking and skinny.
My groomer hand scissors him into a very long puppy cut with a nicely clipped face, tail and fuller legs. We are in S. Florida and he is an active little boy. Wrestling with his friends, out walking. I get a big handful of hair every 2nd. day when I brush him.
He SHEDS. Not all over your clothes and furniture. But little tuffs, it is strange. Medically, there is no cause for this shedding. I vacuum up a lot of his hair every couple days. I wonder if it is something to do with him being shaved so short.
Does anyone else think their Hav sheds? Is this normal?
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post #12 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 12:56 PM Thread Starter
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I also am wondering about the effect of cutting hair. It seems to me that leaving a 1/2 inch is the same as not cutting it at all since only the follicle is alive. However, I have never had a Havanese before. My guy seems, at one year, to have one type of hair, and I have not seen what others describe as "guard hairs". I really appreciate this conversation!
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post #13 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 02:09 PM
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We've never shaved one down to the skin, but cutting it short has no effect on it growing out again, except it takes a long time. I don't think it takes any longer for it to grow out than it did the first time.

They don't shed, but they do loose hair, just like people do. Live with a short haired dog, like a Dalmation, and you will see the difference in what shedding really is.
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post #14 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 02:11 PM
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The coats vary from a silky, single coat, to a thick double, curly coat. There are Many variations in between. The silky coats are the easiest to maintain.
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post #15 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 06:39 PM
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They don't shed, but they do loose hair, just like people do. Live with a short haired dog, like a Dalmation, and you will see the difference in what shedding really is.[/QUOTE]

He certainly seems to lose a ton of hair then. Between what I brush out and what I vacuum, there is a lot. His hair is very thick and full despite the falling out.
I guess I thought that he would be like my Bichons in this respect. My last Bichon was kept in a full show clip and I brushed him almost everyday. I'd collect a bit of hair from the brush. Never found his hair on the baseboards and under furniture ever.
Thanks for the response. I've wondered about this.
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post #16 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 08:45 PM
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Sounds unusual, but they do have a tremendous variation in coats, from one to the other.
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post #17 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-06-2019, 08:54 AM
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It takes approximately (again, as Tom said, it varies a lot from dog to dog) 3 years for a Havanese coat to fully grow. From a tiny puppy to a fully mature coat and from a cut coat to a coat where you can see no vestiges of the cut ends. So that's why people who show are very reluctant to have any hair cut. It means a LONG time out of the show ring if a dog is cut down.

But I've seen people go from a "puppy cut" to what, for them as pet people, felt like a full coat in a year or so. Anyone who knows Havanese well could see where the cut hair was growing out, but it was long enough to be really cute... just not something you could put in the ring. But these weren't people who were showing anyway, so who cares?

Just like people who never cut their hair, the hair on a Havanese will find its own natural length FOR THAT DOG (or person). Each will be a little different. Also, pet dogs who run in the woods and tussle with playmates (like my three) will certainly have more breakage than many show dogs being heavily campaigned, who often spend the majority of their time in an ex-pen, and heaven forbid that another dog touch their coat. Not ALL show dogs are kept that way, but many are.

It is also incorrect for a Havanese coat to grow so long that it trails on the ground, so needs to be trimmed to keep that from happening. (as opposed to a Maltese or Yorkie coat, which is supposed to be cut off at ground level) But you see that in the ring all the time too. No dog is perfect. And if I had to choose a fault, I'd take a too-long silky coat over a puff-ball frizzy coat with too thick an undercoat any day. The too long coat is something that is easy for pet owners to manage. Those dogs from the puffball lines ALL get cut down in pet homes because they just mat too badly for pet owners to be able to manage it. Quite frankly, even in show/breeding homes, those dogs are generally cut down as soon as their show career is over.

You've all seen photos of Kodi many, many times. He never had scissors TOUCH his coat other than to trim his feet and sanitary area for 10 years. (until about a month ago) I've included a few photos that show Kodi's full, adult length coat, clean and groomed, but not with "conformation show type" care. Since I modeled his "puppy cut" on photos of him at about 10 months, I suspect that if I were to let him grow out for a year or so, many people wouldn't see much difference. A person who knows Havanese coats well would probably be able to see that it had been cut for another year after that. (But we'll see what happens. He's going to stay this length, at LEAST for the next few months ) But cut ends have a DEFINITE different look to them than ends that have grown out naturally. You can spot them easily once you know what to look for.

I don't think people should be afraid of putting their Havanese in a puppy cut. It is purely a matter of personal choice. So is whether that is done with clippers or hand scissoring. If it is done with clippers, it should be done with clipper guards, and not be too close a cut. If you don't know what you are doing, the first time have a professional do it and ask if you can watch. Scissoring is a lot more expensive, but if you want a longer puppy cut, it's the only way to get it, since even the longest clipper guard will only leave about 3". Hair grows, Havanese hair grows pretty fast. It's just that to get a SHOW coat, it has to grow a long way! To get a cute, fluffy coat takes a lot less time.

SHAVING, however, should be only in the direst of circumstances. When a dog has been so neglected that it is matted to the skin and usually is done under heavy sedation. Or if the dog has a wound or skin condition or needs surgery. In all cases, a shaved dog will need protection from both sun and cold until its hair grows out again.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 2012 04 16 Hike with Dave & Kodi_0009sm.jpg (80.5 KB, 21 views)
File Type: jpg 10703753_767930399934473_2236667637421904088_n.jpg (71.8 KB, 23 views)
File Type: jpg Kodi Belton (1 of 1).jpg (179.4 KB, 69 views)


Karen, Kodi, Pixel and Panda
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post #18 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-06-2019, 09:05 AM
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Oh, and you can also have variations in coat on one dog. Panda's white hair is substantially longer than her black hair. This is also a little bit evident on Kodi, but not to NEARLY the extreme it is on Panda. Maybe on her it is more evident because her body, just a big band around the middle, is black, and both ends are white, then her ears are black, while her face is white. So she has a luxuriant mustache and ruff around her neck, and in comparison, her ears look a bit moth-eaten. Fortunately, the black hair on the sides of her face hides that somewhat! And she's got lovely, long, thick "leggings", then her "skirt" under her tummy (the black part) looks like it's one size too short. (I'm picking on my poor girl.
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File Type: jpg 2018 09 01 Panda Bath (3 of 10).jpg (44.4 KB, 18 views)
File Type: jpg 2017 01 16 Panda after Bath (3 of 7).jpg (52.0 KB, 18 views)


Karen, Kodi, Pixel and Panda
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post #19 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-06-2019, 01:31 PM
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Thanks! Karen for the education on Havanese hair and hair cuts. It was interesting you noted that Panda's black and white hair is different. Makes me smile. I love these dogs. I've noticed different patches of hair on Patti that are different.
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Last edited by Mikki; 06-06-2019 at 01:34 PM.
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post #20 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-07-2019, 09:09 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks to all! I am getting more emboldened about growing out his coat. No show dog here, but the idea that the coat will STOP growing (my previous dog was part poodle, and it would never stop...) and that it can be maintained with trimming and grooming is really interesting. Have never shaved a dog except for surgical sites, so the longish puppy cut is our choice for now. But he is only a year old, and we are aware that the coat can change.
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