Why Do Dogs Shed?

Dogs shed to heal and replace damaged hair and skin.  Some dog breeds, though, are notorious shedders, whereas some are not really that bad.  Here are some of the most common reasons dogs shed their hair in varying amounts, and at different times of the year.

Why Do Dogs Shed?

Shedding is a natural process through which, dogs renew their damaged hair and skin. Naturally, dogs with thicker and more fluffy coats will generally shed the most.  Dogs typically shed more in the spring and fall months, to change their coat with the weather and maintain the best level of warmth and comfort possible (A winter and a summer coat).   You should be careful with dogs that have a very thin coat in the summer, they can get sunburned, which will cause them to loose hair and make the problem even worse.  Stress can also bring about shedding, both immediately and longer term, this is probably most noticeable and common if you take your dog to the vet (short term), or if they are put in a situation they do not feel comfortable, like a kennel (longer term).  One other very important but less known factor of shedding is a dogs diet.  Proper nutritional health is essential for a dog’s shiny coat, and if they are malnourished you will begin to notice excessive shedding and a lack of luster in their coat, this can lead to bald spots if not taken care of!  This is most important in pregnant dogs, as they will be giving all of their nutrition to their pups before birth, although shedding of the belly is totally natural, it is just shedding for easier access during nursing and this hair should return after the pups grow up.  Dogs like the Border Collie, German Shephard, or Saint Bernard have what is called a double coat, meaning they actually have two different layers of fur.  These types of dogs will usually shed much more, especially coming into the summer season and is completely a completely natural process.  And finally, dogs can loose hair from allergies or animal bites and stings.  Fleas will usually cause a dog to have dry and itchy skin, and if your dog has fleas they will usually loose hair around the tail.  Most times, shedding is natural, but it should come in cycles.