hair in the eyes

Hello I'm new to this but wanted to know if anyone knows the answer to my question. Will fur covering my sheepdogs eyes cause blindness??? I dont think so but people tell me that they heard that my dog will go blind if you keep the hair long! Can someone help me with this one???

oh another one! If the fur is kept long in the summer will my dog over heat or does the fur insulate in the winter to keep them warm and do the same in the summer to keep em cool??? Please help :) lisa
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Sheepdogs are alot like people...

Having hair over their eyes won't hurt their eyes, nor will keeping their hair tied in a knot out of their eyes. However, just like you, if you were to have alot of hair covering your eyes, you might tend to bump into things frequently!

If you were to wear a heavy coat in the summer, this would not keep you cool, it would tend to keep your body heat in, and overheat you. Same for your dog, but then again they will acclimate somewhat to the higher temps. Lots of fresh cool water, and watch their breathing (panting) for signs of heat distress.

Just my opinions!
Good luck!
Have to disagree with your second point Ron (at least from what I've read!)

Apparently the make-up of the OES's fur, with the soft downy inner layer and coarser outer layer does indeed make for a very good insulator, and can therefore maintain body temperature in both extremes. I was told there was no need to clip my Woofer's coat in the summer for this reason, and certainly he never seemed to be bothered in the 100*F temps this summer!
I agree with Mikeyg. I live in Argentina and summers are "quite" hot. 100°F or 38°C. Last year I was very concerned about this topic so I asked the breeder if I should cut Shanti hair, and answered me with a big no!!! :? 8O Also, he said that if it is very hot, Shanti will try to find the coolest place of the house, not to do excersices during the hottest hour of the day. Also, as he loves water, when I am watering my garden, Shanti starts to play with it, so he always ends wet and fresh... and my house moody... :cry:
I was going to write a long dissertation on heat loss and thermodynamics, then I realized I don't have any idea what thermodynamics are. :roll:

I'll just say that my experience with my dog was that he was MUCH happier with a puppy cut... more energetic and more playful. Others that I've talked with have said the same.

Soooo, we'll just have to say that whatever works for you and your dog is great!
We live in Oklahoma where the summer temp. can easily top 100. We shave our sheepies every Memorial day, then again around the 4th of July. They are definalety more playful and have more energy when we shave them. When we adopted our first sheepie she had a puppy cut that had grown out quite a bit. When summer hit here activity level went WAY down (I thought something was wrong with her) so I did some research, had her shaved, and she was back to her normal self again~

Just my two cents
Cindy & The Monsters
Oh guys. Now I don’t think that something is right... or what’s is or isn’t right!! :? You know, I just remembered when we shaved our collie Otto (with whom a grown up) and he was so ashamed when we took him out… :cry: so really I don’t know. I have to restrain myself with every comment that people give to me when I walk Shanti … like.: poor dog, he might be so hot.. etc.

So anyway… if you shave your sheepie… how do you handle the brushing? I do remember when Shanti had shorter hair, he had more knots… how do you know if he is hot?
Abbi does so much better with shorter hair in the summer that I do not care what other say or think, its a short hair style for her from about April through August. I do not shave her legs all the way, and this year I did not shave her chest or head, but did shave her muzzle feet, underbelly, arm pits, part of her rear, and back. She is now growing out with three different hair lengths and we are not having any problem with knots or mats, of course she is slicker brushed daily to keep the dirt out and thoroughly brushed and combed out twice a week.

I find the question on whether to cut the coat for the hot weather or not one of personal choice, but no one is going to say that a full coated sheepie in even 97'F weather with humidity above 70% should be kept outside without having access to a swimming pool (pond) and shade, and a nice patch of dirt to nap in. Frankly the grooming hassle, heat, and the enjoyment of runs and walks during the summer have convinced me that a short coat is easier to groom and more comfortable for the dog. I have met a slew of people who disagree vehemently and say the long hair actully helps cool the dog. I know it doesn't work this way for us. I can also apply parasite preventions easier and check her for any injuries easier with a short coat.
This said, I wish the first groomer I took Abbi to had not ever cut her top knot. It has taken a year to get it even half way as full as it was 2 years ago. Also, never cut the coat so short that they get sunburned or can easily irritate the skin. Once the skin is irritated they will lick and lick and lick...until you have a whole new set of problems. I always leave at least an inch of hair. I groom, including cutting, my dog myself, because groomers seem to forget things too frequently. Right now Abbi is growing out a "lion" cut that I gave her in May. I love it because everyone seems to think she is some exotic dog and it leaves her fully coated in the front and on the tops of her legs. Her back is shaved short, her feet are totally cleaned, and her muzzle is clean. Right now she has the muzzle growing out and only her beard or chin shaved clean.
I guess I treat her like a muscular standard poodle with this fabulously friendly character.
Whatever you decide to do with the dog's hair, enjoy! If you are happy your dog will bounce for joy no matter what.
As long as you do not cut off their lashes the dog will keep most of the hair out of their eyes, but you need to clean off the eye buggers and make sure hair is not constantly irritating their eyes as this can lead to loss of sight and my be a precursor to cataracts in any dog. A top knot held by hairbands, plastic rubberbands, or even with ties will keep the hair out of the eyes during play. If you have any children around I find keeping the eyes as clear of hair as possible a real boon. The dog sees the kids coming and can react accordingly. Decreases the accidental bumpings and walking over kids if you know what I mean. Of course, they see cats, squirrels, and small birds more easily too, which can lead to the run-for-them-as-fast-as-you-can syndrome.
Have fun with your dog what ever you do!

By the way Danik, Shanti's so beautiful. I love your new photo. Maybe instead of cutting his coat for your Argentine summer you could ask your groomer to thin out his hair? There's a breeder in Mississippi who claims that she thins out her sheepies' hair for the summer with no problems. Claims it helps keeps them cool. I think there's several differest combs with razors and with just uneven teeth that thins out long haired coats. Every time I do it, it feels like I am pulling out Abbi's hair, so I just gave up on it. But professional groomers are suppose to know how to do it correctly, without pulling the hair out. You may want to find out more about the procedure?
EXCELLENT POINT. I should have mentioned that if you do decide to shave the dog down close to the skin my understanding is that the skin under white fur is albino -- it has no pigment in it and will burn from the sun quite readily.

So we always try to keep about 1/2 inch of hair over the white areas, and the dark areas can be clean shaven. Still, we try to limit sun exposure for the first one or two weeks.
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