Hair shedding is one of the most common problems dog owners face. The fur sticks to the couch and the floor which, not to mention the allergens, is annoying for many. The good thing is that there are home remedies for dog shedding you can utilize if your pooch is starting to shed.
Some dog breeds have thicker coats while others have thinner ones. But that doesn’t guarantee that the latter will have less shedding and dander. There’s no way we can prevent dogs from shedding since it’s their natural way of removing dead skin cells and fur from their body. What we’re going to do here is manage the shedding so it won’t wreak havoc on our houses.
Is shedding normal?
In a general sense, shedding is a normal phase our dogs undergo. It’s their way of getting rid of their old fur and skin, much like how we, humans, shed our dead skin cells. Look at your shower drain: the hair stuck on it is the human version of shedding. Your hair fall-ridden comb is like a dog grooming brush for dogs filled with fur.
By removing the old hair, dogs get to replenish it with new ones. Shedding plays an important role in maintaining their shiny coat. Take note that your dog’s coat isn’t just a typical growth. Our pooches also use it for sensation and body temperature adjustment.
Each dog breed will have its unique shedding season. Pomeranians and Collies will have big shedding changes at least once a year unlike Malteses and Shi Tzus. And if you have a furry Samoyed, expect a whole cloud to fall out. There’s no way you can stop this from happening. Temperature changes and seasonal shift all determine as to when your dog will start shedding. Home remedies for dog shedding will be your go-to solution to manage this.
To guide you about the shedding season, here’s a short video from MyPet USA and Pet MD:
What is considered “too much” shedding
A lot of owners freak out when their dog shed continuously all throughout the year. Again, this will boil down to the breed of your dog. Short-coated dogs shed all year round, but you rarely notice it due to their thinner fur. Meanwhile, Akitas and Huskies will exhibit prominent shedding about twice a year.
As much as these are normal, there’s also a case when too much shedding can be a cause of concern. Shedding due to injuries can be a good thing at some point since this is part of healing. However, if your dog starts to shed more than the usual together with lesions, it’s a sign that the pooch has an illness.
You should see a vet at this point to get the problem fix before it affects a larger area of your dog’s coat. Stop using a dog grooming brush for dogs too as it may cause excessive molting in this case.
Risk factors to watch out for
-Thyroid issues and diabetes
Dogs can experience abnormal shedding if they have thyroid issues. It can alter their biochemistry, causing excessive fur to fall out. The same goes for diabetes. It’s best to seek the help of a veterinarian on these cases.
Canines have a natural way of cleaning themselves, but if the dog doesn’t perform enough of self-grooming, too little or too much shedding may happen. Both of these aren’t good signs. When the pooch shed a little, it means he’s not renewing his coat. It will start to look soiled regardless of how much you bathe him.
-Dandruff and dry skin
Dry skin will likely cause excessive shedding. Dandruff won’t just irritate the skin of the pooch, it can also cause a number of other health issues if not addressed early on. Be careful on home remedies for dog shedding too as it might aggravate the hair fall.
-Diet and indoor environment
Poor nutrition is one of the leading causes of unnecessary shedding among domesticated dogs. Some food ingredients may also trigger allergies that can cause the fur to fall out incessantly.
The thing about hypoallergenic dogs
Due to the issue of shedding, many aspiring dog parents resort to getting the so-called “hypoallergenic” dogs. Pet shops market these breeds to shed less and produce less dander. Breeds like Poodle, Maltese Terrier, and Shih Tzu are said to be hypoallergenic – the same reason why they are famous among pet lovers.
However, no dog is 100% hypoallergenic. Such misnomer spread like wildfire which made many to believe that they can ditch the dog grooming brush for dogs. It just happened that there are canine breeds that shed less. They still lose a small amount of hair every day, but without specific seasons for heavy shedding.
Pet experts argue that the factors to determine whether a dog is hypoallergenic or not are quite subjective. An allergic person may react differently to various breeds, even those that are dubbed as “hypoallergenic”.
Saliva, dander, and fur all cause allergic reactions. For example, since a Poodle doesn’t drool, it can be hypoallergenic to a person with an allergy to dog saliva. But it won’t be the same for individuals who are allergic to dander.
As you see, it’s a matter of tolerance. It’s not conclusive that a dog is hypoallergenic just because it sheds less.
Tips to manage dog shedding at home
It only takes one black shirt to know that your dog’s shedding is getting out of hand. If fur is always in the air on your house, you have to perform some home remedies to manage this problem. Of course, you can always ask the opinion of your groomer or vet on this case. But for a quick reference based on personal experiences, here are some hacks to keep your sanity while sucking the hair out of your couch.
The first thing you have to do – and probably every dog owner does – is to vacuum like there’s no tomorrow. This will suck most of the hair everywhere including your couch, bed, floor, and living room. Make sure to use a High-Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) vacuum so you can remove even the tiniest bit of dander that your doggo shed.
Vacuuming as frequently as you can is key if you want to control the mess of shedding. Using a dog grooming brush for dogs comes next.
-Consider adding molasses to food
Some pet owners swear by the efficiency of molasses as one of the home remedies for dog shedding. It can reduce the hair fall, as paw-rents say. Molasses are similar to honey and if you choose an organic one, it should be safe for your dogs. Prefer the dark one too, since light colored molasses have very high sugar content.
Practice moderation when feeding your dog with molasses. Adding about one tablespoon on your dog’s meal will be enough. As much as this is relatively safe, a nod from your vet will be excellent.
You can prevent the fur from sticking to the corners of your room by bathing your dog regularly. This way, you can remove the excess hair and flush it away. It saves you from one or two vacuuming sessions. Washing the pooch’s body at least once a week with a gentle dog shampoo should be enough. During summer, twice a week might be advisable if you’re in a state like Florida where the days can get really scorching.
During the shedding season of your dog, brush him daily to remove the hairs before it falls off around your house. Make sure that you choose a spot where you can afford to let the fur stick. It’s recommended to do this on your outdoors or a spot away from the couch or closet. If your dog has a thinner fur, you can brush him every three days.
Your pooch will battle the dog grooming brush for dogs, trust me. There would be a lot of snarling and biting on the brush. It’s just a matter of getting them used to it with bribes on the side.
-Install an air purifier
If you sleep with your dog in the same room, it’s best to install an air purifier. It won’t suck the fur, but it will help reduce allergic reactions due to the minute dander floating in the air.
-Off the couch for the season
Those who have furballs like Samoyeds, Chow Chow, and Labradors should consider getting the pooches off the couch and hooman beds for the meantime. You might miss some cuddle moments, but it will also spare you from getting all the hair out of the mattress.
-Use a lint roller
Regular brushing, bathing, and vacuuming can limit the spread of the fur, but there will still be some strands that will find its way on your couch cover or blanket. A lint roller will be excellent in removing those pesky hairs without the need to shake the fabric violently. Pair it with a dog grooming brush and you’re golden.
For more tips on how to manage dog shedding, here’s a video from Dr. Andrew Jones of Veterinary Secrets:
When to see a groomer or a vet
Visiting your groomer at least once a month is advisable to control the shedding. Groomers can cut your dog’s coat short to limit the mess it can cause at home. Dog groomers know well how to maintain the natural pH of the dog’s fur to prevent excessive shedding. During the heavy shedding phase, it’s important to use a specialty shampoo to prevent the doggo’s skin from drying.
Seeing a groomer should be a regular habit and not just during the shedding season. It’s a part of being a responsible dog parent, anyway.
Regular check-ups with the vet will also ensure that your doggo is in top shape. Pay an immediate visit to the vet if you notice that your pooch is shedding more than usual accompanied by lethargy or poor appetite. Don’t stick to home remedies for dog shedding at this point.
The crazy idea of shaving your dog
This “solution” probably crossed your mind after tireless days of vacuuming and brushing the hair off your kitchen corners. Some pet owners do this during summer to keep their doggos cool. However, you should stir clear of shaving if you have a double coated dog breed. It may look like you’ve gotten away with the pesky shedding fur, but it will only make a big disservice to your pooch’s health.
Double coated dogs have two layers of fur: an undercoat with short hairs and the topcoat with a thicker and fluffier characteristic. Some of the double coated dog breeds are Siberian Husky, Golden Retriever, and Shiba Inu. Shaving these dogs will damage their fur for good which spells trouble during colder months. Even if you want to limit the shedding, this shouldn’t be a choice.
Best Brushes for Dog Shedding
Sleek EZ Grooming and Shedding Tool
If you want to go tough against shedding, this Sleek EZ brush will help remove up to 95% of the falling hair. It’s made from a cylindrical wood where the high-carbon steel comb is attached. By gliding gently, you’ll prevent hurting your doggo. Aside from using this as a grooming tool, the brush can work well with your lint roller to remove fur that sticks to your car seat, furniture, or bedding.
This unassuming brush comes in different sizes to suit the size of your dog. It’s actually less intrusive than other bristled or teethed brush that agitates your pooch. This is also cheap but long lasting so you get more than what you pay for.
DELOMO Deshedding Mittens/Brush
I must admit, using a dog grooming brush will end up with flailing paws and constant wiggling. The trick here is to use the Delomo Deshedding Mittens. You will wear it like a normal glove, pet your doggo, and then you have a whole chunk of fur sticking on the palm area. It has 225 silicone tips that massage the pooch instead of grazing his coat.
This works most of the time and you can skip the bribing part since your dog won’t know that you’re actually de-shedding him. The pooch will be in a total Zen mode thinking that you’re giving him a nice rub.
Managing dog shedding is the challenge of owning a furball. Home remedies for dog shedding will help so you can survive the season without shaving your pooch or resorting to other crazy methods. This is just a part of being a paw-rent. With all the love that the doggo is giving you, this is just a little sacrifice.