Whiskers are like a support system to our four-legged friends.
Yes, you heard it right. This may come as a surprise to many people because they are not aware of why do dogs have whiskers. They think that whiskers are just unnecessary and ordinary hairs that should get removed during grooming sessions. But in reality, the truth is completely opposite.
By removing the whiskers, your dog’s appearance will surely enhance and it may make you feel good. But you must keep in mind that by removing the whiskers, you are literally snatching the unique abilities from your dog that help them in many circumstances.
In this article, we are going to take a deep dive into the dog’s whiskers. Keep reading, your every doubt will surely fade away.
What Exactly Whiskers Are And Why Do Dogs Have Them?
Whiskers are the long coarse hairs that are also known as vibrissae. Generally, you will get to see them at the following spots:
- Above the eye of your dog
- Around the nose of your dog
- Around the jaw of your dog
According to Paw Leaks, a dog can have approximately 20 whiskers on each side.
Most people treat whiskers just like normal hairs. But actually, they are very different and serves a unique purpose to your dog. Dr. Jennifer Coats, who is a vet expert at Chewy, says that whiskers are the hairs that are connected with sensory nerves around a dog’s face.
So, why do dogs have whiskers? What exactly do they do for our furry friends? Let’s find out.
Whiskers help your dog in many ways. They can help them to see things in the dark. You can even consider whiskers as the right hand of a dog’s eye. As we all know a dog’s eyesight is a little bit weak but whiskers help them a lot in spotting things. Especially, when the object is tiny.
When your dog tends to touch anything, whiskers make them blink which is the ultimate protection for your dog’s eye. Because when your dog blinks, the risk of injury to the eye gets reduced.
You may be surprised to know that whiskers also help your dog to express emotions. When your dog feels scared or distressed, you will notice a few changes in whiskers. Most likely you will notice that they are flared and are pointing forward. And when dogs are attentively engaged with the surroundings, you will see their whiskers upright. This is very helpful for an owner to understand their four-legged friend’s emotions and find out if they are feeling uncomfortable.
When the dog tries to touch anything, whiskers send vital sensory information dog’s brain. So, ultimately we can say that whiskers are something that helps our dog in daily life and explores the world in a better way.
Is It a Good Idea To Cut Or Trim Your Dog’s Whiskers?
When you are grooming your dog, clipping the nails, brushing the furs, you might also think of trimming the whiskers. And you may also notice your groomer cutting the whiskers. But should you really cut them?
Trimming your dog’s whisker can make your dog look cute. But besides that, your dog will face lots of difficulties. As we mentioned above that whiskers send sensory information to a dog’s brain which helps them in their daily life activities. And by cutting those whiskers, you are putting your dog in danger which can cause injuries.
So, cutting or trimming whiskers is not recommended at all.
From now, whenever you go to your dog’s groomer, make sure you talk about this.
Do Dog’s Whiskers Fall Out On Their Own?
Yes, dog’s whiskers fall out on their own. Now you might be thinking that whiskers are very essential for our furry friends so why do they fall out?
Well, falling out of the whiskers is known as shedding which happens naturally. This process happens throughout life and is considered very common.
So there is no need to worry at all. With time, they will grow back. But if your dog is losing whiskers because of any disease then it may not grow. In this case, talk to your vet.
Here are some of the questions asked by many dog owners. Chances are high that you might have some of them on your mind as well. Have a look:
Can My Dog’s Whiskers Grow Backs If They Are Plucked Out?
One word answer: Yes
If you have plucked, trimmed, or cut your dog’s whiskers, they will grow back for sure. But if the root is damaged, they may not. How much time it will take completely depends on the age, health condition, and breed of your dog.
Do Dogs Feel Pain When Losing Whiskers?
It actually depends. If you are trimming or cutting your dog’s whiskers, there will be no pain. But if you are pulling, plucking, or twisting them, it can be painful for your pup.
Can I Touch My Dog’s Whiskers?
You should avoid touching your dog’s whiskers as they are known to be very sensitive to touch.
Why Some Of The Dogs Don’t Have Whiskers?
Every dog is unique. So having whiskers varies from dog to dog. Some dogs may get whiskers in good quantity, on the other hand, some may not get even one.
Summary | Why Do Dogs Have Whiskers
Whiskers are very important for dogs to function properly in their daily life. They are unique hairs that are located above the eye and around the jaw and muzzle.
Whiskers help our furry friends in numerous ways. For example, they help them to express emotions, support their vision, protect the eyes, etc.
A dog owner should never cut or trim their dog’s whiskers as it can create lots of difficulties for the pup.
Dog’s whiskers also occasionally go through the process of shedding. In this process, the dog sheds the old whiskers, and the new ones take their place.
So, that was all about Why do dogs have whiskers. Now we hope that this article was helpful to you.