Shedding is a natural process that dogs go through to get rid of old or damaged hair and to make way for new hair growth. However, excessive shedding can be a nuisance for pet owners, especially those who suffer from allergies.
All dogs shed, some more than others, and this can be a source of stress for pet owners who feel like they are constantly cleaning up mountains of fur. The amount of shedding depends on the breed of dog, climate conditions, nutrition levels, potential allergies, and other factors.
Fortunately, with regular at-home grooming and a healthy diet, it is possible to keep shedding under control.
Cause of Shedding in Dogs:
Dogs shed their fur for a variety of reasons, some of which include:
- Seasonal shedding: Many breeds of dogs have a thick undercoat that they shed in the spring and fall as the weather changes. This is a natural process that helps them adjust to the changing seasons.
- Breed characteristics: Some dog breeds naturally shed more than others. Breeds like German Shepherds, Golden Retrievers, and Huskies have thick undercoat that sheds heavily.
- Health issues: Some medical conditions such as allergies, infections, hormonal imbalances, and skin problems can cause excessive shedding in dogs.
- Poor diet: A lack of essential nutrients in a dog’s diet can cause dry skin and a dull coat, which can lead to excessive shedding.
- Stress and anxiety: Dogs that are stressed or anxious may shed more than usual due to hormonal changes in their body.
- Aging: As dogs get older, their skin becomes less elastic and their fur can become dry and brittle, leading to increased shedding.
It is important to note that some shedding is normal for dogs, and it is impossible to stop it completely. However, by keeping your dog healthy, feeding them a balanced diet, and keeping up with regular grooming, you can help minimize shedding and keep your dog’s coat healthy and shiny.
7 ways to reduce shedding in dogs:
1. Brush your dog regularly:
Brushing your dog’s coat on a daily basis can help remove loose hair and prevent it from accumulating on your furniture and clothing. Use a good quality brush that suits your dog’s coat type.
2. Bathe your dog regularly:
Giving your dog a bath every few weeks can help remove dead hair and prevent it from shedding excessively. However, be careful not to bathe your dog too frequently as this can dry out its skin and coat.
3. Feed your dog a healthy diet:
A balanced diet that is rich in essential fatty acids and vitamins can help keep your dog’s coat healthy and reduce shedding. Omega-3 fatty acid supplements can have a plethora of benefits for dogs, such as aiding in joint health, promoting heart wellness, and boosting the immune system. Furthermore, they can help your pup grow healthy fur. Consult with your veterinarian for recommendations on a good diet for your dog.
4. Use a high-quality dog shampoo:
Choose a shampoo that is formulated to reduce shedding and promote a healthy coat. Look for shampoos that contain natural ingredients like oatmeal, aloe vera, or coconut oil.
5. Control fleas and ticks:
Fleas and ticks can irritate your dog’s skin and cause excessive shedding. Use a flea and tick preventative recommended by your veterinarian to keep your dog free from these pests.
6. Boost their water intake:
If your dog is shedding more than usual, it might be a sign of dehydration. Generally speaking, dogs should drink one ounce of water for every pound of body weight each day. For example, a 10-pound pup needs just over one cup of fresh water daily to stay hydrated and healthy. Dehydration can cause dry skin which leads to excessive fur loss around the home – so keeping an eye on their drinking habits could help you avoid this issue!
7. Consult a veterinarian:
Excessive shedding in dogs can be indicative of a variety of medical issues. Common causes include parasites, fungal infections, stress, sunburn, and thyroid imbalances. Skin allergies may also cause skin irritation and itching which leads to more hair loss. If you notice your dog losing an abnormal amount of fur or patches of baldness appearing on their coat, it is important that they receive a comprehensive check-up from the vet as soon as possible.
By following these tips, you can help reduce shedding in your dog and keep your home clean and free from excess hair.