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Shedding in Dogs

Shedding in Dogs

 It is a natural phenomenon involving a dog losing his old coat of hair so that a new coat can come in to replace it.

One of the occurrences, that all dog owners have to learn to live with, is that of their pets shedding hair periodically. Barring dogs which are completely hairless, as for instance the American Hairless Terrier, all dogs shed hair, some more profusely than others. It is a natural phenomenon involving a dog losing his old coat of hair so that a new coat can come in to replace it.

The amount of hair that a dog sheds depends very largely on his breed. For instance, there are some varieties, like the Poodles, which hardly seem to shed any hair at all while some short-haired dogs cast off huge amounts. One of the reasons for dogs shedding very large quantities of hair is that they may belong to a breed that is “double-coated”. This means they have an undercoat and the top layer of hair sheds more frequently and more profusely than it does with dogs with a normal layer of hair.

A common misconception amongst people is that longhaired dogs shed more hair than shorthaired ones. This may not necessarily be true as the longer strands of hair may well give the impression that the dog is shedding more while this may not factually be the case.

Then there is also the phenomenon of seasonal shedding for some breeds. Certain varieties of dogs shed their winter coats in the spring and if you are the owner of one such breed, you will have to be prepared for large-scale shedding at these times of the year.

Dog Breeds that Shed Less

If you happen to be a sufferer of allergy and want to keep a dog as pet, you would do well to select one which doesn't shed. These non-shedding dogs are termed hypoallergenic. This term means that, unlike normal dogs, these species produce less dander and flaky dead skin and consequently, far less allergens. Allergens are what gives rise to allergies in humans. So, go in for a dog which is not “double coated”. This is more important than the length of the coat as far as shedding is concerned.

Not that you can ever get a dog that does not produce Dander at all. All dogs do. Some even shed their skin every few days. You just have to try and get a breed which sheds less.

However, be warned that dogs which do not shed heavily have to have their hair tended to much more carefully than other normal breeds. Because the hairfall is much less, the hair on his body tends to stay on for longer and therefore gets matted after a while. Hence the need for more intense grooming.

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Shedding in Dogs

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