Canines have a variety of long and short hairs. So, when they shed, it’s quite a hassle to clean up after them. We can’t help but look for ways to control dog shedding. Shedding is a dog’s natural process of changing coats. Yet, if too much hair comes off, it must be something wrong with your furry companion. Let’s find out how to stop/reduce dog shedding.
10 Ways To Control Dog Shedding
We know that shedding is only normal. But, it can still be a bit alarming if your dog sheds a little bit too much. Since this article listed the top 10 ways to reduce dog shedding, you don’t have to worry anymore.
Pick the Right Brush
Picking the right brush is vital. The different types of brushes available on the market depend on the dog breed. For instance, Golden Retrievers and Cocker Spaniels have long hairs prone to matting. So, they will need a slicker brush with fine short wires that can detangle their thick locks.
On the contrary, if you own a double-coated German Shepherd or Malamute. Also, for thin-coated dogs like Pugs and Greyhounds.
Use Deshedding Tools
Another way of controlling dog shedding is finding yourself a de-shedding tool. There are a variety of de-shedding tools that remove tangles and mats on the market. One of these tools are called de-shedding gloves.
According to Joe Bartges, a professor from the College of Veterinary Medicine in Tennessee, shedding is a natural way of removing excess undercoats. When that happens, all of those hairs can get messy.
Meanwhile, the highly recommended tool by veterinarians is the FURminator. It comes in three sizes, and it has only one purpose. Unlike ordinary combs and brushes that only groom, this de-shedding tool removes dead undercoats.
Brush Your Dog Regularly
Brushing doesn’t only help with dog shedding, but it also regulates blood vessels. By brushing your dog’s hair, you keep it healthy by spreading its natural oils evenly.
VCA Animal Hospital stated that all pets benefit from brushing. They added that dogs with long curly fur need regular brushing to avoid nasty tangles and mats. Yet, short-haired dogs require fewer brushes.
Moreover, Dog Time also expressed that the ideal hair bushing for long-haired dogs like Tibetan Terriers is once or twice a week. Whereas, Smooth-coated dogs like Labrador Retrievers need brushing every two weeks.
Bathe Your Dog Regularly
According to the Animal Humane Society, a bath should be given every two to four months to stop dogs from shedding hair. They added that frequent bathing could cause skin drying and irritation.
The coat type also plays an important factor in bathing. For instance, drop-coated dogs like Lhasa Apso require more baths since they get oil build-ups. Hairless dog breeds, too, such as the Chinese Crested Dog, need a bath once a week since they’re prone to blackheads.
Give the Right Food
A proper diet stops/reduces dogs’ hair from shedding. Dry fur and hair loss result from a lack of protein. Also, protein deficiency can lead to skin depigmentation.
Moreover, the amount of protein needed by a dog depends on its body weight. Remember that 1 gram of protein is proportionate to 1 pound of dog weight. In that case, a 60 lbs dog should be fed a 60-gram protein mixed in its diet.
Further, Animal Wellness Magazine enumerated some food promoting good skin and healthy hair.
- Sweet Potato
Be Mindful of Allergens
Allergies can trigger excessive shedding in dogs. Sometimes, dogs are allergic to household cleaners. Other times it’s the medication, environment, and even food. VCA Animal Hospital also stated that insect bites have allergens. Insects such as spiders, ants, and bees contribute to dog shedding.
Also, some dogs are sensitive to environmental allergens such as pollens. So, when dogs inhale or touch them, they cause allergic rhinitis or pruritus.
Further, avoiding these common food allergens below can help stop a dog from shedding.
Give Your Dog a Supplement
According to the FDA, most processed dog food already has complete nutrients. But, Susan Wynn, DVM, a veterinary nutritionist, stated that adding supplements to your dog’s food can enhance their health.
In addition, omega-3 fatty acids, flaxseed, and molasses as safe supplements that stop dogs’ hair from shedding. Vitamin A helps in hair growth, but too much can harm blood vessels. Also, vitamin D in large doses causes muscles and bone atrophy.
Keep Your Dog Hydrated
Dehydration causes dry and itchy skin. So, the proper intake of water every day helps with dog shedding. Dehydrated skin irritates and causes more shedding. Since water is good for the skin, dogs need at least 1 ounce of water per pound of their body weight. For instance, a 50 lbs dog should drink at least 50 oz of water.
Also, Canine Journal expressed that aside from water, dogs can also drink other forms of liquid to rehydrate. That includes veterinarian-approved drinks like Wolf Spring Canine Drink.
Blow Dry After Taking a Bath
A dog’s fur must also be blow-dried like a human’s hair. Blow drying a dog’s hair prevents furs from being loose and falling out together. Moreover, blow dryers are a great help for shedding dogs’ old fur after a bath. Plus, it also prevents dogs from developing acute moist dermatitis.
Animal Behavior College also stated air drying is better than blow drying. They say sensitive dogs may get irritated skin from rubbing towels or the blower’s heat.
Do Trimming as Necessary
Regular trimming is what stops dogs from shedding. Trimming removes occasional mats and tangles on a dog’s hair. Most people confuse trimming with shaving. Bond Vets explained that grooming or trimming keeps fur healthy. They also said that shaving isn’t recommended since it leaves dogs prone to insect bites and sunburn.
Long-haired dogs like Afghan Hound need frequent trimming once or twice a month. To prevent matting and shedding, dogs must be trimmed every four to six weeks.
When To See a Vet
Shedding is normal, but you must consult a veterinarian when you notice large chunks of hair falling besides shedding season. The Merck Veterinary Manual said that it’s a normal shedding process if there is no itchiness, irritation, or huge bald spots.
If your dog loses more hair than usual, it could be a medical condition. For instance, bald spots on your dog could mean alopecia.
Hair loss coupled with red, irritated, and itchy skin could result from mange. Willow Brooke Vet Clinic stated that shedding could also be caused by several issues such as stress and infection.
Grooming products like shampoo cause frequent irritation and shedding too. Plus, hormonal imbalances in dogs are not impossible. In addition, if you notice your dog losing hair and at the same time looking lethargic, then you should visit a vet. If you are bathing your dog frequently, use the right dog shampoo to prevent shedding.
We can’t stop dogs’ from shedding. It’s nature’s way of removing unwanted coats stuck in their bodies. However, we can help reduce shedding with a healthy diet and proper and regular grooming.