December 28, 2017

According to the 2017 APPA National Pet Owners Survey, shedding is the second biggest negative aspect of owning a dog.

The unfortunate truth is that all dogs shed to some extent. There's nothing you can do to put a stop to it.

But different factors impact how much hair your furry friend loses. Plus, there are specific steps you can take to keep dog shedding under control.

Let's find out what's causing your dog to shed and what you can do to minimize the problem. Read on!

Causes of Dog Shedding

In the vast majority of cases, shedding is entirely normal.

A breed's hairshaft lifespan determines how much it sheds. For example, certain dogs like Shih Tzus have low-shedding coats. Other dogs like Labradors shed more than average.

But in other cases, shedding may indicate serious and sometimes even life-threatening issues.

Here's a closer look at some of the most common causes of dog shedding.

Normal Shedding

The majority of dogs are double-coated. This means they have both a wooly undercoat and a longer overcoat. As a result, you can expect a healthy dog to shed throughout the year.

However, seasonal shedding usually occurs during the fall and spring. When temperatures cool, your dog sheds its summer coat for a warmer one. And when temperatures heat up, a light coat replaces the thick winter coat.

Stress and Anxiety

Nervous dogs tend to shed more than usual.

This type of hair loss generally begins after a significant change in a dog's environment.

Hormonal Changes

It's common for female dogs to lose hair 1-3 months after giving birth. Some of this is due to stress, but it's also a result of hormone fluctuations.

Dogs also lose hair if estrogen, testosterone, or progesterone levels get too high or too low.

Allergic Reactions

Allergies to medication or grooming products may cause some hair to fall out.

Dogs also shed due to allergic reactions from foods or household cleaning products.

Skin Disorders

Skin conditions that can cause hair loss include ringworm, dermatitis, fungal infections, and mange.

Dry skin due to dehydration is another potential cause.

Cancer

In very rare cases, canine cancer may be the cause of significant shedding.

Look for other symptoms such as weight loss, abnormal swelling, and persistent fatigue.

What You Can Do About It

The first step to preventing hairs from building up on your furniture is to brush your dog's coat daily.

Low shed dogs may respond well to a normal brush. But a de-shedding tool may be necessary for heavy shedders.

Also, once a month give your dog a bath using natural dog shampoo. This will help wash the dead hairs away before they have a chance to spread all over your home.

Keep in mind that if your dog has an oily coat, it may need a bath as often as once a week.

If your dog is shedding due to stress and anxiety, make sure to give it plenty of affection. Exercise can help your dog relieve some stress too.

Final Thoughts

When you groom your pooch properly, dog shedding is no longer a major problem.

Keep an eye out for bald patches on your dog's coat. If you suspect shedding is due to any of the health issues mentioned above, take your dog to the vet immediately.

If you want to keep your dog's hair off your furniture and clothes, make sure to check out our line of dog grooming products!


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