Dogs are truly one of the best things about life. They bring us so much joy and provide the unconditional love that many find difficult to attain in human relationships. There are countless positives to owning a dog. You get more exercise, you have a companion for daily life, they offer love and help reduce stress and anxiety. But, there is one major detail about owning a dog that can drive a person absolutely crazy. The shedding. Oh my goodness, the dog shedding. If daily sweeping and vacuuming wasn’t a part of your routine prior to getting a dog, well you should be ready to add that to your list of chores.
Tips for Minimizing Your Dog’s Shedding in White Bear Lake, MN
If you are looking for tips to minimize your dog’s shedding, we have what you are looking for.
Brush Your Dog
One of the main ways to minimize shedding is regularly brushing your dog’s coat. Brushing benefits your pup’s health and creates a time for bonding between you and your dog. If you start brushing consistently at a young age, it can be a relaxing activity for both you and your dog. The health benefits of brushing include removing dirt, dandruff, and dead hair from your pet’s coat and helps keep them clean. The natural oils brought out through brushing keep the coat shiny and pretty.
Know Your Dog’s Coat
Each type of coat requires a different brush style or technique. Dogs come in a few different coat types, so it’s important to know what kind you have in order to give the best care. If your dog is a smooth coat breed, they are the lowest maintenance type of coat. They do require regular brushing every few days but won’t need to be trimmed. Dogs with double coats require a little more care. These breeds shed their undercoat and can mat easily, so make sure to brush every couple of days, similar to the long hair cats. Wire hair is best tamed with a slicker brush and a stripping comb. If your breed of dog has a curly coat, say a Bichon Frise, they will need to be taken to a groomer for regular clippings. Long haired dog breeds may also benefit from a professional since they’ll need to be trimmed occasionally as well. Plus, they have a ton of fur to tackle, so it may not be something you want to mess with.
Make sure that you understand what is required of your breed before choosing a dog. You might not want a high maintenance coat. Dogs that fully shed their undercoat like the Shiba Inu and the Siberian Husky with shed excessively twice a year. For some people, this can be too tough to manage. The “doodle” varieties (like Labradoodles, Bernedoodles, etc.) have become increasingly popular in recent years because they are dogs that do not shed. For a lot of families, this makes the most sense and helps keep their homes cleaner than if they got the same breed without the poodle genetics.
Bathe Your Dog
Along with brushing, you should regularly bathe your dog to reduce shedding. You don’t want to give your pup a bath too often because it can dry out their skin and cause irritation, but a regular bath every month or so will help keep the shedding down. Make sure to use a top-quality shampoo that has ingredients like oatmeal and aloe vera in it. Cheap shampoos can have nasty chemicals that can also irritate your dog’s skin.
Check Your Food
Another way to reduce shedding is to make sure that your dog is getting the right nutrition. When you feed your dog a high quality, protein rich dog food, they are getting nutrients they need to have a beautiful, shiny coat. You can also add a fatty acid supplement. It’s similar to us as humans taking biotin to help grow our hair. A fatty acid supplement will reduce shedding and promote the growth of your dog’s undercoat. It is best to talk with your veterinarian before changing your dog’s diet.
Walk Your Dog
One surprising way to get that shedding under control is to get your dog regular exercise. Because exercise reduces stress and helps your dog stay healthy, it’s natural that a healthy coat will follow. Without exercise dogs can become anxious and have been known to scratch and bite themselves which can add to excessive shedding. So, make a daily walk a routine and even add 10-15 minutes of fetch or his favorite game after.
Additional Options to Reduce Dog Shedding in White Bear Lake, MN
When you’ve done all of the above steps and you’re still annoyed with the hair, it’s time for you to step in and make some changes of your own. Get dog friendly old blankets and cover the couch or beds that he likes to lay on. Then you can easily remove the covers and wash them. The same goes for car seats. Get protective covers that are easy to clean. You can also change your habits by sweeping and vacuuming daily to help prevent the hair from getting out of control. There are a lot of great products out there to help you clean your couch, floor, and rugs. Do a little bit of research and find what works for you. Consider looking for options that say “pet hair” in the name to make certain you’re getting your money’s worth.
While shedding isn’t exactly the most beloved part of having a pet, for most dogs it’s a part of the whole package. Before choosing a breed, check what needs to be done as part of the grooming routine and think long and hard about if that sounds doable to you.
About Birch Lake Animal Hospital
The staff at Birch Lake Animal Hospital seeks to provide the best possible medical, grooming, and boarding care for our highly-valued patients and clients.