Shedding: It's one of those things you just have to deal with when you have a pooch around. It's not always bad, though, and you can do a few things to help the situation. Depending on your pup's coat, shedding can occur several times a year -- or year-round.
All dogs shed, even those that supposedly don't shed. Shedding is your pooch's natural behavior in getting rid of dead hairs to make way for new ones, or to lighten up when the temperatures get warmer. Some dogs have longer fur-growing cycles, which makes them appear to not shed. Other dogs, like collies and golden retrievers, have thick double coats that may shed year-round. Some dogs blow their double coats twice a year in massive waves of furry madness. Pups that are indoors year-round tend to shed more evenly throughout the year because their temperature is controlled, but you'll still notice coat-blowing during certain times with some breeds.
Spring is when many dog-owned people start to notice a great deal of furballs floating around their home. It's only natural, however, as your pooch's body is getting him ready to enjoy the warmer days. Many dogs put on a thick winter coat to help insulate them during the cold of winter. In spring, their body starts releasing this coat to make way for a cooler body.
Fall is another common time for massive shedding for many breeds. Blowing occurs in fall as well as spring, so you're likely to notice little fur-bunnies rolling around your floors or under your furniture. While blowing helps get rid of the older undercoat, it's pushing it out in large clumps. It's a lot to deal with and sometimes overwhelming -- especially the first time you experience a full-on coat blow!
When you read about a type of dog, you'll normally notice a small section in whatever you're reading pertaining to grooming. Don't take it for granted, the suggested grooming intervals can really help you keep your sanity when it comes to shedding. You should brush all dogs at least once a week, some dogs require much more frequent brushings. On double-coated breeds, the undercoat rake can help a get rid of that thick undercoat, while slicker brushes can help with short- to medium-haired breed. Whatever you do, don't shave a pooch with a double-coat. Shaving will lead to alopecia and a denser, thicker undercoat that could affect his ability to stay cool or warm. If your pooch seems to be shedding too much or excessively, take him to his veterinarian to make sure he isn't suffering from health issues or allergies.
With a professional background in gardening, landscapes, pests and natural ecosystems, Jasey Kelly has been sharing her knowledge through writing since 2009 and has served as an expert writer in these fields. Kelly's background also includes childcare, and animal rescue and care.