Affectionately referred to as Italy’s “truffle dog,” the lagotto romagnolo is revered the world over for its incomparable nose—and its ability to track down the truffle mushroom, considered a delicacy in a variety of cuisines.
But something else this breed is known (and revered) for? Their coat. The lagotto romagnolo’s thick, curly coat is certainly a sight to behold. But it’s also a sight that needs careful and regular grooming to look its best.
So, how exactly do you groom this truffle-hunting pup? What are the basics of brushing, bathing, and regular trims? And what are some of the best hairstyles for this breed?
As mentioned, the lagotto romagnolo’s coat is an impressive one. This breed has a thick, waterproof double-coat (before their truffle hunting days, this dog was regularly used as a water retriever). The coat is packed with dense curls all over the body, which relax to a wavy texture around the hair and face. And those curls? Typically, they don’t need much brushing.
Some dogs will experience more matting than others. If you notice matting on your dog, gently pull it apart with your fingers and comb it out. But don’t brush out your dog’s curls too much, as it can mess with the shape and texture. Instead, just let it do its own, curly thing!
Another interesting feature about the lagotto romagnolo’s coat is that it’s made of hair, not fur, which keeps shedding to a minimum (and also makes this breed a great choice for dog lovers with allergies).
So, let’s recap. With the lagotto romagnolo, you don’t have to worry about regular brushing. You don’t have to worry about shedding. Pretty low maintenance, right?
Not so fast! While this breed isn’t as high maintenance as, say, a poodle, they definitely have their own set of grooming needs. First, you’ll need to bathe your pet on a regular basis—at least once per month, more if they get extra dirty or muddy. (Luckily, this breed loves the water, so you shouldn’t have any problems!) Wash the entire coat with a pet-friendly shampoo and rinse completely before drying your dog. (Bonus—removing mats from your dog’s coat is much easier after a bath!)
You also want make sure to check your dog’s ears every week for debris, buildup, or any signs of infection.
Give them regular nail trims. A good rule of thumb? If you can hear your dog’s nails on the floor, it’s time for a trim.
And last, but not least? You’re also going to need to schedule regular trims. As the lagotto romagnolo’s hair gets longer, it also gets more prone to matting, which can be uncomfortable for your pup. Regular trims will keep your dog’s coat looking its best—and your dog feeling their best in the process.
Regular haircuts are key to keeping the lagotto romagnolo’s trademark curls under control. But what are the best haircuts to show off those curls (and keep their coat in tip-top shape)?
Lagotto romagnolo haircut #1: Puppy cut
The shorter your dog’s curls, the easier they’re going to be to manage—which is what makes the puppy cut a go-to for this breed.
With the puppy cut, your dog’s coat is kept equally short across the entire head and body (typically one to two inches). With a cut this short, your dog is less likely to experience matting—which makes things easier on both them and you.
Just one thing to keep in mind: if you want your dog’s coat to stay nice and short, you’ll need to cut it often—so scheduling regular trims is a must.
Lagotto romagnolo haircut #2: Teddy bear cut
The teddy bear cut is very similar to the puppy cut, with one clear distinction. This hairstyle leaves a little bit of extra length around the head and face, creating a more rounded look—and lending your dog some seriously adorable teddy bear vibes.
Upkeep for this cut is pretty similar to the puppy cut, and that includes regular trims. Because there’s more length around the head and face, your pet might be more prone to matting—so make sure to regularly check their face for any mats and keep them comfortable and tangle-free.
Lagotto romagnolo haircut #3: Show cut
One of the most popular haircuts for this breed is, of course, the standard cut for show dogs. Typically, the coat is kept short around the body with a bit of extra length around the head and legs. But not too long; the coat should be structured and shaped so that the dog’s curls take center stage!