Dog Shedding - Causes and tips to control it
While certain breeds like Huskies or Golden Retrievers are known for their fur shedding, it can still be a problem for almost any dog parent.
Some owners are too familiar with daily vacuuming the clumps of fur that’ve fallen off their dogs. While certain grooming products may market themselves as the perfect solution to your shedding woes, it’s essential to understand why dogs shed to treat them accurately.
Why is my dog shedding so much?
While some dogs shed only once or twice a year, other dogs shed from different parts of their body for the entire year. However, a dog may be shedding clumps of fur because of their fur type and the amount of grooming they receive.
When short or smooth-furred dogs shed, their fur quickly falls off.
But if a dog has a long or thick coat, it’s much more likely its fur will get caught when it sheds, especially for dog breeds with thick coats. This will increase the chances of developing clumps of fur. Even if your dog doesn’t form clumps of shedding fur, you may still notice the shedding from hypoallergenic dog breeds, as their saliva and dander can still cause allergic reactions. This makes them the perfect furry friend for those with allergies.
We usually see long hair falls out more frequently than short ones.
When do dogs shed the most?
Dogs shed their fur as a natural process of growth and replacement. The amount of shedding and when it occurs can vary depending on several factors, including the breed, age, and environment. Here are some general things to keep in mind when it comes to a dog's shedding:
Seasonal shedding: Many dogs shed the most during the spring and fall when they are shedding their winter or summer coats to adapt to the warmer weather. This is especially true for dogs with double coats like Huskies, Retrievers, and Shepherds, including German Shepherds, depending on the breed of dog. During these times, dogs shed their old fur to make way for a new, lighter coat of older hairs.
Hormonal shedding: Some dogs may experience increased shedding due to changes in their hormones. This can happen during pregnancy or after giving birth, as well as during a female dog's heat cycle.
Stress-induced shedding: Dogs may also shed more when they are stressed or anxious. This can be caused by a change in their routine or environment, separation anxiety, or other stressful situations.
Illness: Certain health conditions can cause a dog to shed more than usual. If you notice a sudden increase in shedding, it's a good idea to consult with a veterinarian to rule out any underlying health issues.
Overall, regular grooming and brushing can help to control shedding and keep a dog's coat healthy and shiny. It's important to choose a grooming routine that suits your dog's needs and to make sure they are getting enough nutrition and exercise to support healthy coat growth.
What dogs shed the least?
If you're looking for a dog that sheds less, there are several breeds that are known for their low-shedding coats. Here are some examples of dogs that shed the least:
Poodle: (Toy, Miniature, and Standard): Known for their intelligence and hypoallergenic coats, Poodles are a great choice for families. Their curly hair requires regular grooming to prevent matting.
Bichon Frise: With a small frame and a fluffy, curly coat that doesn't shed much, the Bichon Frise is another excellent choice for allergy sufferers. They are known for their cheerful demeanor and require regular grooming.
Portuguese Water Dog: This breed has a waterproof coat that doesn’t shed much, making them a perfect option for those who love water activities. They are energetic and require regular exercise.
Scottish Terrier: Scottish Terriers have a wiry outer coat and a soft undercoat, which sheds very little. They are independent and spirited, with a distinctive appearance.
Yorkshire Terrier: Their fine, silky hair is more similar to human hair and sheds very little. Yorkies are small in size but big in personality, making them ideal for city dwellers.
Shih Tzu: Known for their long, flowing coats, Shih Tzus require regular grooming but are a great choice for those looking to avoid shedding. They are friendly and adaptable to various living environments.
Maltese: The Maltese has a long, silky coat that doesn't shed, making it a good choice for people with allergies. They are small but full of personality and require regular brushing.
Chinese Crested: These dogs are known for their hairless bodies, which means they don't shed much at all. They are also great for people with allergies.
Do dogs shed more in the Summer?
Dogs can shed more in the summer due to several factors. First, dogs with a double coat, such as Huskies, Retrievers, and Shepherds, may shed more in the summer as they shed their heavier winter coat for a lighter summer coat. This can result in more shedding as the undercoat is released.
Second, dogs may shed more in the summer due to increased exposure to sunlight. Sunlight can stimulate hair growth and cause more shedding as the dog's body tries to get rid of older or damaged fur.
Third, dogs may shed more in the summer due to increased activity and time spent outdoors. Dogs that spend more time outside in the summer months may shed more as they move around and play, causing loose fur to fall out.
Finally, dogs may shed more in the summer due to exposure to allergens such as pollen and grass. This can cause increased shedding as the dog's body tries to rid itself of these irritants.
How to stop a dog from shedding?
While it’s not possible to stop your dog from shedding completely, it is possible to decrease the amount they shed. If done correctly, stopping your dog from shedding so much can positively affect its health.
#1 Brush your dog frequently
Brushing is the #1 way to decrease the amount of dead fur flying off your pup! It does a great job of combing out the dead fur that has been trapped. This can reduce the amount of hair that comes off around your home, and it can help temporarily decrease the amount your dog sheds after being brushed with combs and stainless steel tines. Regular brushing is especially important for pet owners who want to control their dog's shedding and keep their canines looking and feeling healthy.
For most dogs, 2-3 times a week is best. However, it’s better to brush short or smooth-haired dogs every few weeks.
Related Blog: 5 Dog Grooming Tips for Summer
#2 Use a Shedding Tool
A shedding tool is a great way to really get out all of the dead furs. If you use the right brush for your dog, you may also brush out a coat that is about to shed and decrease the amount of shedding by quite a bit.
#3 Give Your Dog Frequent Baths
The last tip to decrease shedding is to give frequent baths to your dog, preferably once every 2-3 weeks. This is a great way to ensure the health of your dog’s skin and hair follicles, which can aid in decreasing shedding and promoting overall health. Using fresh water and deshedding shampoos are a great way to make the most out of this process and prevent dehydrated skin.
Related blog: How often should you bathe your dog?
Perks of Managing Dog Shedding
When you take the time to manage your dog’s coat, it can decrease the amount of shedding that happens and also improve their health. Proper brushing and bathing, also known as regular brushing, can help alleviate skin conditions by ridding it of dirt and bacteria and preventing excessive scratching. It can also improve the health of their fur by increasing the texture and shine of your dog’s longer coat. Additionally, managing shedding can also help prevent and control parasites like fleas and ticks, which can cause serious health issues for your furry friend.