11 Dog Breeds with Double Coats for Extreme Weather

Black Newfoundland

Dogs come in a range of coat colors and textures. Long, short, curly, fluffy, straight, and fur—and everything in between—are all available. Some dogs have only one layer of fur, referred to as a single coat. Other dogs have a two-coat system, with a small undercoat buried behind a larger outer coat. These two layers serve to keep the dog warm in the winter and cool in the summer by trapping cool air close to the skin. The waterproofing effect of the additional layer is also noticeable. Many double-coated dog breeds were created to operate in cold and wet environments.

Here are 11 double-coated dog breeds that can withstand harsh conditions.


Most double-coated dog breeds are significant shedders, and as the seasons change, they will experience periods of excessive shedding. Brushing many times a week, if not daily, is required to remove loose hair and avoid mat formation. Make sure to use a brush with long enough bristles to reach the undercoat through the outer coat. Grooming certain particularly fluffy dogs with thick undercoats with a wide-toothed comb or grooming rake may be beneficial.

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    white and black akita looking alert

    The double coat of the Akita is made up of a thick, velvety, dense undercoat and a straight, harsh, short outer coat. These dogs are noted for being clean and odorless, and they don't shed much. They do, however, require brushing a few of times each week. They "blow" their undercoat around twice a year, shedding profusely. Brushing every day during that period will help keep the loose fur contained.

    Breed Overview

    Group: Working

    Height: 26 to 28 inches (male); 24 to 26 inches (female)

    Weight: 100 to 130 pounds (male); 70 to 100 pounds (female)

    Coat and Color: Short, thick double coat that may be any color, including white, brindle (brown with tiger stripes), or pinto (white background with large colored patches)

    Life Expectancy: 10 to 13 years

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    Australian Shepherd


    A medium-length, straight to wavy, weather-resistant outer coat and a shorter undercoat make up the lovely double coat of the Australian shepherd. To avoid matting and remove stray fur, these should be brushed once a week. They also have a lot of shedding phases. Using a grooming rake every few of days at that period will assist to remove loose undercoat fur.

    Breed Overview

    Group: Herding

    Height: 20 to 23 inches (male); 18 to 21 inches (female)

    Weight: 50 to 65 pounds (male); 40 to 55 pounds (female)

    Coat and Color: Medium-length straight to wavy double coat that comes in blue merle, black, red merle, or red, all with or without white markings

    Life Expectancy: 12 to 15 years

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    A thick, medium long, slightly wavy or straight outer coat and a shorter, wooly undercoat make up the Bernese mountain dog's double coat. These dogs shed a lot on a regular basis, and considerably more when they blow their fur out once or twice a year. Brush them at least once a week, and more frequently during major shedding. Remove any knots in the coat using a slicker brush or a metal comb.

    Breed Overview

    Group: Working

    Height: 25 to 27.5 inches (male); 23 to 26 inches (female)

    Weight: 80 to 115 pounds (male); 70 to 95 pounds (female)

    Coat and Color: Tricolor, thick double coat (black base color with white and tan markings)

    Life Expectancy: 7 to 10 years

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    The double coat of the chow chow can be lengthy (called rough) or short (called smooth) (called smooth). A dense, straight outer coat is combined with a soft, thick, wooly undercoat in the rough coat. The smooth coat chow has a little rougher texture than the rough coat, and it lacks the rough coat's ruff (thicker hair around the head) and feathering (longer hair around the ears, legs, abdomen, or tail). Brushing is required at least twice a week for both smooth and rough-coated chows.

    Breed Overview

    Group: Non-Sporting

    Height: 17 to 20 inches

    Weight: 45 to 70 pounds

    Coat and Color: Rough or smooth double coat that comes in black, blue, cinnamon, cream, or red

    Life Expectancy: 8 to 12 years

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    The thick double coat of the Keeshond is inherently clean and has very little odor. The undercoat is thick and downy, while the outside coat is long and straight. These dogs require weekly brushing and are just mild shedders. To keep their longer fur clean, they may require a little trimming, especially around their feet.

    Breed Overview

    Group: Non-Sporting

    Height: 18 inches (male); 17 inches (female)

    Weight: 35 to 45 pounds

    Coat and Color: Very thick double coat in cream, black, and gray color variations

    Life Expectancy: 12 to 15 years

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    Labrador Retriever


    The double coat of the Labrador retriever is made up of a short, thick outer coat and a soft, weather-resistant undercoat. This thick coat protects the Lab from the elements, water, and deep undergrowth. These dogs shed a lot and should be groomed at least once a week to keep the loose fur contained.

    Breed Overview

    Group: Sporting

    Height: 22.5 to 24.5 inches (male); 21.5 to 23.5 inches (female)

    Weight: 65 to 80 pounds (male); 55 to 70 pounds (female)

    Coat and Color: Short, dense double coat that comes in black, chocolate, or yellow

    Life Expectancy: 10 to 12 years

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    A thick, straight, and water-resistant outer coat and a silky, dense undercoat make up the Leonberger's double coat. The fur is medium to lengthy in length. The fur around the neck of male dogs makes a magnificent, lion-like mane. Because these dogs shed a lot and are prone to matting, they should be brushed every day. Look closely at the lengthy hair behind their ears and on their legs.

    Breed Overview

    Group: Working

    Height: 28 to 31.5 inches (male); 25.5 to 29.5 inches (female)

    Weight: 110 to 170 pounds (male); 90 to 140 pounds (female)

    Coat and Color: Double coat in gold, red, reddish-brown, sand, or yellow-brown; black face mask

    Life Expectancy: 9 years

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    A coarse, relatively long, straight or wavy outer coat and a soft, dense undercoat make up the Newfoundland's flat, thick, water-resistant double coat. These dogs shed moderately and only need brushing a couple of times each week. They do, however, blow their coats twice a year and will require frequent brushing at that time.

    Breed Overview

    Group: Working

    Height: 28 inches (male); 26 inches (female)

    Weight: 130 to 150 pounds (male); 100 to 120 pounds (female)

    Coat and Color: Commonly black double coat, can also come in brown, gray, or black and white

    Life Expectancy: 9 to 10 years

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    The double coat of the Pekingese is long and thick, with a harsh, straight outer coat and a thick, soft undercoat. Like a lion's mane, the coat creates a ruff around the neck. Even though they are just moderate shedders, these little dogs require a lot of grooming. Remove tangles and loose fur by brushing them a few times a week. To work out knots, a metal comb may be required in addition to a brush.

    Breed Overview

    Group: Toy

    Height: 6 to 9 inches

    Weight: Up to 14 pounds

    Coat and Color: Coat commonly seen in variations of gold, red, or sable but may also be black and tan, white, cream, or gray

    Life Expectancy: 12 to 14 years

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    A long, thick outer coat and a short, dense undercoat make up the Pomeranian's fluffy double coat. It develops a thick ruff around the neck that reaches to the shoulders and chest. Although these dogs shed moderately, they nevertheless require weekly brushing to avoid matting. To groom the undercoat, use a brush that extends all the way into the coat.

    Breed Overview

    Group: Toy

    Height: 6 to 7 inches

    Weight: 3 to 7 pounds

    Coat and Color: Long double coat that most commonly comes in red, orange, cream, brown, or black

    Life Expectancy: 12 to 16 years

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    The double coat of the Saint Bernard can be short or lengthy. The thick, strong outer coat of the shorthaired Saint Bernard is smooth. The exterior coat of the longhaired Saint Bernard is medium length and straight to slightly wavy. A thick undercoat covers each of them. Brushing is required at least once a week, and they shed more heavily twice a year.

    Breed Overview

    Group: Working

    Height: 28 to 30 inches (male); 26 to 28 inches (female)

    Weight: 140 to 180 pounds (male); 120 to 140 pounds (female)

    Coat and Color: Thick coat that comes in white with red, brown, or brindle markings

    Life Expectancy: 8 to 10 years