Shedding is a natural loss of fur (hair) in dogs that allows the new coat to come in. All dogs shed; some more than others. There is no such thing as a non-shedding dog, unless you have a completely hairless dog.
That being said, there are physical problems that can cause large, abnormal amounts of shedding such as ringworm, skin infections, stress, mange and cancer. If your dog’s hair loss is abnormal or excessive, you will see bald spots. Take your dog to the vet. It may be an indication that your dog is ill.
A) Depends on season
Some breeds have what we call “seasonal shedding.” The amount of shedding is influenced by the amount of time spent in the sunlight and by temperature fluctuations.
During the spring, you’ll notice that your dog will loose a lot of hair. This is due to your dog loosing his winter’s thick undercoat to prepare for the warmer days of spring and summer.
Some may think that the only time your dog looses a significant amount of hair is in the early spring; however, your dog will shed in the fall too. This shedding is due to your pet loosing his lighter, thinner coat to make way for the thicker hair that grows for the winter.
However, most pet dogs now are indoor dogs. They are seldom outside and so their bodies may not be able to register the change of season. Hence they commonly shed all year round but in smaller amounts since they are exposed to a more constant temperature and consistent light source.
B) Depends on breed
Shedding varies greatly from breed to breed. Longhaired dogs may appear to shed more, but it is really just the length of their hair that gives that illusion.
For examples, breeds like the Bichon Frise, Yorkshire Terriers, Bouvier des Flanders and poodles do not shed much though they have continuously growing hair. Their hair shafts have longer life spans.
Whereas breeds like the Saint Bernard, Great Pyrenees, Labradors, Huskies and Newfoundland shed a lot because of their shorter hair shaft life span and more abundant undercoats.
What can you do to reduce shedding?
Routine grooming is the key to keep shedding under control, be it due to seasonal change or breed type.
Since we all know that the dog’s hair is going to fall out either way, then the best is to remove it yourself and throw it into the trash rather than have it fall out naturally all over your house, isn’t it?
The more dead hair you remove through grooming your dog, the less you will see of it in your house. Brushing your dog once a day will greatly reduce the unwanted hair all over your clothes, carpet and furniture, especially during shedding season.
Brushing also distributes the natural, healthy oils produced by the skin throughout the hair coat. It is also a form of quality time bonding with your pet.
Shaving your dog down is not a perfect solution, as it can interfere with your dog’s natural self-cooling and self-warming mechanism. In the long run, it will not make shedding any less.