Shedding is a natural process that all dogs go through. However, it can be frustrating for many pet owners. Dogs tend to shed in various degrees. There are specific breeds that shed little while dogs that have thicker coats shed huge amounts of hair. Nevertheless, all dogs with hair shed regularly.
A dog’s hair consistently grows and sheds on a regular basis. It can last from a month to as long as a year depending on several factors.
A dog’s hair shaft goes through several phases including shedding. These phases generally affect the hair growth and vary depending on the breed, age, health, and environment of the dog in addition to the genetics, texture, and length of hair. Some breeds such as Poodles and Yorkshire Terriers have hair shafts with longer life spans. Therefore, they shed very little.
Basically, there are specific times of the year when dogs shed more. Most dogs shed more hair during spring and fall which is often referred to as blowing coat. Seasonal shedding happens due to the change in temperature. When the warm season comes in, dogs tend to shed their old undercoats to make way for new ones. As the season begins to get cool, they shed their light undercoats and develop thicker coats in time for winter.
However, some dogs like Shih Tzus have less undercoat. Hence, even as the seasons change, they don’t shed as much. Pomeranians, on the other hand, have lots of hair and in effect, shed more.
How to Minimize Shedding
Even though you can’t prevent your dog from shedding, there are ways on how you can reduce the amount of hair you have to clean up after. In fact, you can remove it directly from his coat before it even hits the ground.
The most important thing you can do is to ensure that your dog gets proper and regular grooming. If you don’t regularly brush your dog’s hair, their hair will fall off anytime and anywhere. With proper grooming, you’ll be able to control and manage the amount of hair your dog sheds with the use of grooming tools.
Avoid shaving your dog as it can affect their ability to warm and cool themselves. At the same time, it won’t have any impact on your dog’s shedding. Brushing their hair helps eliminate dead hairs and prevent it from creating mats on their coat.
Combing their hair evens out the natural oils produced by their skin. There are certain tools that you can use for dogs that are heavy shedders such as this de-shedding glove brush. You can also bring your dog to a professional groomer once in a while to help maintain a healthy coat.
Aside from combing, washing your dog will get rid of loose hair. Usually, once or twice a month may be enough. However, some dogs may require more frequent baths.
If you are more prone to allergies from dog hair, a weekly bath may be more feasible. Make sure that your dog’s skin doesn’t get irritated due to over-washing. Use a mild shampoo or a hypoallergenic product and avoid ingredients that have too many chemicals.
Caring for your Dog
At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter whether you do it yourself or hire a professional. As long as your dog gets the proper care and attention they need.
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