Shedding is a way in which dogs get rid of old and damaged hair. Fur becomes thinner with shedding, which is also a form of temperature control. While it is a normal process, excessive shedding can be annoying. Cleaning dog fur is time-consuming. If you believe your dog is shedding abnormally, call your vet. Vets can also offer ways to minimize shedding.
Shed control is possible, sometimes using a formula to reduce shedding is really helpful. But if excessive shedding is combined with important mood swings, changes in eating patterns or other signs of distress, medical treatment may be required.
Understanding Abnormal Shedding
One reason for excessive shedding can be stress. If there have been substantial changes in your dog’s environment, this can be the case. Dogs are sensitive and new people in the house or moving can trigger important stress responses. If your dog is excessively licking and scratching itself, anxiety has to be ruled out.
A dog’s diet can also play an important role in excessive shedding, as it can be an allergic response to a change in food brand. Always choose high-quality food brands that offer a good nutrient balance. Keeping a registry of dietary changes can help your vet in diagnosing the causes of excessive shedding. Also, ask your vet if your dog may be lacking a specific nutrient. A deficiency in omega 3 fatty acids may be the cause. If you have decided to change your dog’s diet, a gradual approach is recommended.
Parasites like mites, fleas, and ticks are extremely uncomfortable for a dog. As a result, the dog can lick or scratch in excess. Excessive scratching will create bald spots that can easily become infected. There are several ways to prevent and treat parasite infestation. In order to rule out parasite infestation, check your dog’s fur periodically. Comercial brands offer a wide array of cleaning products and collars that are helpful preventive measures, but maintaining a hygiene routine is the best one. Periodic grooming will likely help in reducing shedding.
Lastly, medical problems such as a skin condition or dandruff may also trigger excessive shedding. If you believe your dog has no issues like the above-mentioned, a deeper physical exam is in order. Liver failure, thyroid problems, and kidney illnesses can also be the cause of excessive shedding. If these are diagnosed early, most of them are treatable.
Minimizing Dog Shedding
If medical reasons have been ruled out, your dog may just be experiencing normal seasonal shedding. To reduce the amount of fur your dog sheds, there are some simple steps to follow:
A routine that includes daily brushing –sometimes several times per day– can help reduce excess shedding. Remember to choose a proper brush. A bath is also recommended, but the frequency will depend on your dog’s breed and overall health condition. If your dog is prone to dry skin or dandruff, excessive bathing is not recommended. If you decide to bathe your dog regularly, try to dry its fur after each bath. Moisture buildup may trigger more shedding. Always pay attention to your dog’s reaction to shampoos or other cleaning products, as some of them can trigger allergic reactions. It is best to choose soothing shampoos that will not affect your dog’s skin.
Dogs require healthy routines and periodic check-ups. Try to research as much as possible about your specific dog breed, and the health issues they may experience. Ask your vet as many questions as you need in order to rule out important health conditions. It is always recommended to have at least one yearly visit to a vet, even if there are no causes for concern.