Ah, dog hair – every owner’s worst enemy. Every time you think you have cleaned them all, another one pops up from somewhere, and then another one, and another. The struggle is real. Although there’s nothing to love about dog hair all around the house, we have to understand that shedding is part of our pet’s nature and actually means that our dog is healthy.
Shedding – A natural process
We all love running our hands through our pooch’s soft fur. A study from 2017 showed that 15 minutes of petting can reduce stress and blood pressure among students.
But then that fur sticks to our hands, blouse, trousers… Shedding is a process when our dogs lose their old fur and grow out a new one. Fur real? Yes! Some breeds are more prone to shedding, while others’ fur is short and is not noticeable as much.
Nonetheless, dogs naturally shed twice a year: in spring, when it’s time to grow a shorter and more summer-fitted coat and in autumn, when they need a thicker coat for the cold days.
So, if even the tiniest thing in your house is covered in fur, just repeat the mantra: “Home is where dog hair sticks to everything but the dog!”
Other reasons for your dog’s shedding
When shedding gets excessive or is centered around one spot, It’s time to examine the reasons behind it. Here’s a list with some of them:
Yes, dogs have allergies too. They may be allergic to pollen, dust, or even some type of food – dairy, soy, meat, etc. – or a medicine. And just like us, humans, dogs scratch or bite the places where they itch as a result of some allergic reaction. This scratching could cause hair loss in that specific spot.
Some external factors may affect your dog’s skin. Take for example – the sun. They love basking in the sun, but its rays may have other plans. They can create sunburn and couple with your dog’s constant scratching at one place, can result in losing hair around that spot.
Serious medical issues
Sadly, there are cases when the root of this problem is something far worse. A medical condition like cancer or some other disease can also have this result – abnormal shedding. (It’s always a good idea to consider getting dog insurance…just saying)
Infections or parasites
Ticks, fleas, fungi, or other parasites can cause skin inflammation and this normally irritates our dogs. So what do they do? Of course, scratch, bite or lick the place and leave us with the broom and dustpan in our hands.
Stress and Anxiety
Yes, just like with humans, stress can lead to hair loss. So don’t be surprised if, on your way to the vet, your car seats will change color to that of your dog.
Sometimes, it’s the food dogs eat. A healthy diet, filled with nutrients is what we want for ourselves, right? Well, the same goes for our pups. If they are fed with food that doesn’t quite agree with them, the result might be stacks of fur left around the house, just for you!
If you’ve tried it all but still can’t find what the problem is, then you might want to check if your female pooch is expecting. Pregnancy can bring forth shedding and it may occur at any stage of this process.
How to deal with shedding?
There are many ways to help our dogs (and ourselves, too) with this problem. The first and most important thing is hygiene. We know what you’re thinking but there is no escape – you will just have to soаp up with them too. It’s a battlefield in there, but only clean shall we emerge! This doesn’t just mean regular baths with special shampoos – for fleas or hair shedding – but daily brushing too. Or weekly. Get ready for another bath after brushing! There are many specially designed brushes for different furs and breeds.
If you suspect that food is the problem – change it immediately. Giving your dog a low-quality food is only a recipe for more shedding. Find the brand that would suit your dog’s nutritional needs and always make sure that they are hydrated.
An opportunity for some bonding time
Shedding can be bothersome and irritating but you can counterattack and use it to your advantage. As messy as bathing and brushing your dog is, it is a guaranteed way to strengthen the bond between you two. Roll up your sleeves, don’t mind the hair chaos – and get in there!
This way you can also make sure that your dog doesn’t have any additional issues – skin irritation, bumps, etc. And the best part is your dog will be extremely happy spending some time with you!