Boxers are a short-haired breed, and many people mistakenly believe that this means they won't shed. In fact boxers do shed, a lot! Boxer hairs don't usually clump like longer dog hairs, but they worm their way into fabrics and carpets and can be nearly impossible to remove.
Feed a high-quality, appropriately balanced food. Diet is the cornerstone of good health and a shiny, healthy coat. An unbalanced diet made up of poor-quality foods will quickly show in your boxer's coat condition: dry, flaky or greasy skin; dry, coarse and brittle hair; and excessive shedding. Essential fatty acid supplements such as fish or flaxseed oil might be beneficial, but check with your veterinarian first. Supplementing some diets might cause a harmful imbalance of nutrients.
Ensure your boxer is in good health. Underlying issues such as thyroid problems or parasites can lead to hair loss. Your boxer should see the vet for a wellness checkup at least annually, and potentially more often as she enters her senior years.
Bathe your boxer as needed with a shampoo formulated specifically for dogs. Since bathing can strip the skin of necessary oils, too much bathing can be just as problematic as too little. Boxers are generally clean dogs, often grooming themselves like cats. Plan on bathing your boxer no more often than once a month, unless she gets exceptionally dirty or smelly.
Groom your boxer weekly. Use a rubber brush or currycomb in a circular motion to pull up dead hairs. Follow with a bristle brush in the direction of hair growth to remove stragglers. White hair tends to shed more than fawn or brindle hair, perhaps due to a lack of pigment; white boxers may need to be groomed more frequently as a result. Additionally, many boxers shed heavily during a change of seasons and need grooming daily or every other day throughout the transition.
Remove excessive dead hairs with a stripping knife or shedding blade. These tools can get closer to the skin than a rubber brush or currycomb to remove more hair. They can also hurt your dog and damage her skin if used improperly, so have your vet or groomer show you how to use the tools first.
Items you will need
- Dog shampoo
- Rubber brush or currycomb
- Bristle brush
- Stripping knife or shedding blade (optional)
- A grooming table makes it easier to keep your boxer still while you're grooming her, and keeps her at your level so you don't have to bend or kneel down. Set up your grooming table outside during heavy shedding periods; this will keep your house cleaner and give the birds a nice soft material for their nests.
- If your boxer is losing so much hair that you can see her skin, take her in for a veterinary examination. She may have an underlying health problem, and the sooner you detect it the better.
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