When it comes to adding a new dog to the family, many pet lovers prefer short-haired dogs to long-haired dogs. This is because they believe that long-haired dogs shed a lot throughout the year while short-haired dogs have a low shedding rate.
Is the statement above true? Well, the truth of this matter is, that all dogs irrespective of the breed, size, coat color, or type shed but the rate of shedding might differ due to some factors.
Talking about short-haired dogs, they shed minimally throughout the year and unlike their long-haired counterpart, they don’t blow their hair during spring and fall.
While shedding is a normal and healthy thing in dogs, it can be a bit frustrating if your dog does it in excess.
In this blog post, we have revealed the causes of shedding in short-haired dogs and also provided you with valuable tips on how to reduce it.
Without further ado, let’s begin!
Understanding the Causes of Shedding in Dogs
Shedding in dogs is natural. It helps dog maintain their shiny and lustrous coat by getting rid of their old coat and producing new ones.
However, while shedding is normal and healthy in dogs, excessive shedding might be something to be worried about.
If you think your dog is shedding more than normal, it is important to take the dog to the veterinarian for proper examination.
Abnormal shedding in dogs can be linked to an underlying health issue. It can also be caused by the following factors:
The rate at which dog sheds is greatly influenced by their breeds. Some dog breeds like Labrador Retrievers, German Shepherds, and Dalmatians are heavy shedders. While others like Basenji, Shih Tzu, and Poodles shed minimally.
Reducing the rate of shedding in these heavy shedders is not always easy because the shedding property is in their genetic makeup, and it can be very difficult to be altered.
Environmental Factors – Seasonal changes
Seasonal change is another thing that can cause excess shedding in dogs. Many dogs especially heavy shedders tend to shed excessively during spring and fall.
This is because, in these two seasons, there are variations in daylight hours and temperature. Hence, the dog will try to adapt to the new season by shedding his former coat.
To be more precise, during the preparation for warmer months (spring), dogs shed the heavy winter coat that has kept them warm throughout the winter and grow lighter fur.
Conversely, as the weather begins to cool (fall), dogs grow a thicker coat to keep them warm in the new winter season, shedding the lighter summer coat.
An adequate diet can go a long way in maintaining your dog’s healthy skin and coat condition. Ensure your dog’s diet has an adequate amount of protein, omega-3 fatty acids, biotin, and essential minerals. A lack of these nutrients can result in a dull, brittle, or excessively shedding coat in your dog.
Underlying Health Issue
Sometimes, excessive shedding can be a sign of underlying health problems, such as allergies, skin infections, or hormonal imbalances.
If your dog’s excessive shedding is accompanied by health symptoms like lethargy, foul smell, bald spot, red inflamed skin, etc. consult your veterinarian.
How to Reduce Shedding in Short-Haired Dogs
Before going into details, it’s important to note that shedding cannot be stopped permanently in dogs. So, if you come across any organization or product promising a miracle solution to stop dog shedding entirely, disregard it because there is nothing as such.
Shedding is a natural part of a dog’s life, and all that will be stated in this section is how to control it, not how to eliminate it.
Below are the ways you can reduce shedding in short-haired dogs:
Brush your Dog Regularly
Regular brushing is one of the best methods to reduce shedding in short-haired dogs. You will need to visit a pet store and get a brush specifically designed for short-haired dogs, preferably a bristle brush.
A bristle brush is recommended for short-haired dogs because it helps distribute natural oils, promoting a healthier and shinier coat, while also effectively untangling and removing shed hair and dead skin cells.
Bathing and Shampooing
Bathing your dog with suitable shampoo and conditioner can also help reduce shedding. However, this shouldn’t be done excessively.
Frequent bathing of dogs will cause more harm than good. It will disrupt your dog’s skin condition and stop it from producing the natural oil that helps keep your dog’s coat shiny and lustrous.
In this case, veterinarians recommend bathing dogs every two months. You may also have to consult with your vet for recommended shampoos and conditioners.
Maintaining a Healthy Diet
Diet has a great influence on a dog’s overall well-being. Feeding your dog with a balanced diet will help promote healthy skin, leading to a lesser shedding rate.
A dog-balanced diet should contain an adequate amount of protein, carbohydrates, fiber, essential minerals, and water.
Supplements such as Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids can also be added to the dog’s diet. These fatty acids help to promote healthy coat conditions.
You may ask your vet for advice on the best dog food that incorporates all these essential nutrients.
Controlling Shedding Through Environment
Invest in a Robot Vacuum with a HEPA filter.
While this does not necessarily reduce shedding in short-haired dogs, it can save you the stress of having to clean up the house every time.
The robot vacuum will constantly clean your home, removing loose pet hair and dander from floors and carpets.
The HEPA filter in this vacuum will also help trap tiny particles, including allergens, preventing them from circulating in the air.
Shedding is natural in short-haired dogs. However, it can become infuriating for pet parents when their dog does it excessively.
Fortunately for you and your dog, there are numerous ways to reduce shedding in short-haired dogs and all these methods have been highlighted already in this blog post.
For those who skipped the blog and jumped straight to the conclusion, below are the ways to reduce shedding in short-haired dogs:
- Brush your dog regularly
- Bathing and Shampooing
- Feed your dog with a balanced diet and the necessary supplements.
- Invest in a Robot vacuum equipped with a HEPA filter.
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
Can certain medical conditions cause excessive shedding in short-haired dogs?
Yes, while shedding is natural in dogs, it can sometimes be linked to an underlying health issue. Health conditions like ringworm, fungal infection, bacterial infection, thyroid disease, skin allergies, Cushing’s disease, and inflammatory bowel disease can all lead to severe shedding on various parts of a dog’s body.
If your dog’s excess shedding is accompanied by the following symptoms lethargy, bald spot, skin discoloration, loss of weight, loss of appetite, etc. Consult with your vet immediately for treatment.
Can changing the dog’s diet eliminate shedding completely?
No, changing your dog’s diet to a nutritionally dense one will only reduce the rate at which your dog sheds, it won’t eliminate shedding completely.
Shedding is part of all dog’s life, and it can’t be put to a halt completely.
Are there certain seasons when short-haired dogs shed more than usual?
Yes, during spring and fall, short-haired dogs tend to shed more than usual during these two seasons. The reason for this is that dogs have to get rid of their old coat and grow new ones which will make them adapt to the new season.
Are there any breeds of short-haired dogs that shed less naturally?
Yes, there are short-haired dogs that shed less compared to others. If you’re looking for a short-haired dog that tends to shed less, consider these breeds:
- Italian Greyhound
- French Bulldog
- Boston Terrier
- Miniature Pinscher
Before you go, you can also read: Are Corgis Hypoallergenic?