If you’re the satisfied owner of a Labrador retriever, then greetings: You know well what it’s like to get dog hair everywhere. Due to their double-layered furs, labs shed the most in two seasons, which are once the weather alters the most extremely, like spring as well as fall. However, Labradors also shed a lot throughout the months in between, meaning that when we talk about your lab’s coat, you might think you’re fighting a difficult battle. With a little work and some procedures, you can learn how to reduce shedding in Labrador retrievers during the year.
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Why Do Labrador Retrievers Shed So Much?
You’d be stunned by how much some short-haired canines shed! You will get bunches of hair in places you never thought, from your kitchen utensils to the insides of your coat pockets! You can find it everywhere! To further know why Labs shed so much, you have to look at the type of fur he has.
Labradors have an exceptional double coat that sheds during the year; however, shedding can enhance during seasonal variations. In the spring, Labs shed their winter fur to be ready for summer, whereas in the fall, they have thicker furs to keep themselves warm in the winter.
Double-coated dog breeds have 2 layers of coat. Once looking at dog fur inheritances, each hair follicle contains 1 to 2 topcoat (guard) hairs and numerous basecoat hairs. Pups are born with a distinct coat but will develop their mature fur from three months of age, lasting till they are one year of age.
Wolves, the nearby living ancestor to the dog, also contain a double fur, which is assumed to be the ancestral feature. However, single-coated breeds do not have basecoat, due to a gene mutation, and therefore they shed less as the basecoat is more predisposed to molting with the alteration of season.
If you remember the history of the Lab, they required their thick, woolly basecoat to protect these dogs from the cold once swimming and to save them in icy waters. Their protector coat gave them an additional waterproof layer. Labs still make outstanding outside working canines as they can bear weather conditions.
Why Labradors Shed So Much Suddenly? Abnormal Shedding
Now that you know your Labrador’s distinctive shedding schedule, you should also be conscious that not all shedding is typical. Some hair loss patterns show health problems that a veterinarian can treat. If your Labrador retriever abruptly starts to shed abnormally, you’ll need to notice why.
Labradors might shed abruptly because of health reasons. Reasons include poor food, dryness, allergies, parasites, and anxiety. Less common causes are hypothyroidism, Cushing’s disease, immature hair follicles, and a medication reaction.
Experts can differentiate between normal shedding as well as fur loss triggered by health, nutritional, as well as environmental issues. The following signs can recognize as abnormal shedding:
- Dry hair
- Annoyance, open sores, eruptions
- Bald patches
- Hatred of petting
Thus, what’s the deal with these abnormalities? Let’s dive into in more detail the issues that can cause fur loss in canines:
Poor diet. A healthy diet offers a steady supply of necessary nutrients. Your Lab’s hair requires these nutrients to stay steadily in the hair follicles. A poor diet with lacking nutrients will trigger hair loss.
Dehydration. When your canine is dehydrated, blood flow as well as oxygen transport to tissues and organs, comprising the skin, are negotiated. The reduction in skin suppleness causes the hair to fall out smoothly.
Ticks, lice, and fleas. These organisms itch your canine’s skin, and consequently, he will bite or scratch. This leads to the pet’s coat falling out, and the skin getting infected.
Immature hair follicles. This can be inherited, even though it isn’t always genetic. Hair follicles do not grow properly, causing patchy or hair loss.
Cushing’s disease. A tumor causes the unnecessary production of cortisol, triggering hair loss in canines. 100,000 canines are diagnosed with Cushing’s disease yearly, with canines older than 6 years at bigger risk.
Hypothyroidism. Symptoms of hypothyroidism consist of enhanced shedding, hair loss, and thinning. But, it’s not a predominant disorder in dogs, and Labs are not among the 3 most susceptible breeds.
Skin trauma. Abnormal shedding can be triggered by skin trauma like bacterial as well as
fungal infections, other allergies, steroids, and burns. Short-term hair loss can also happen during pregnancy, treatment, or once recovering from a disease.
Stress as well as anxiety. Behavioral issues that cause stress as well as anxiety; for example, separation anxiety, can drive your dog to chew his skin, leaving skin patches. Acral lick dermatitis is the term for this illness. Parasites as well as other allergic problems can also cause it.
Whatever the reason for your dog’s abnormal shedding, prevention, as well as solutions are similar to managing normal heavy shedding, whether seasonal or year-round. Numerous reasons could cause additional shedding in your pooch, such as:
- Imbalanced diet
- Utilizing the wrong shampoo
- Anxiety around the home
- Skin parasites
- Hormone imbalance
- Underlying diseases
Is Shedding a Sign of a Health Condition?
Whether it’s humans, felines, or dogs, shedding is usually a consistent and healthy incidence. Shedding in canines is the body’s method of ridding itself of old, extra hair grown from the basecoat. Since Labradors are double-coated, shedding is predictable; however, at what point should you be worried?
Unluckily, different things can affect how your Lab sheds its fur, which can make it difficult to target specifically once something is wrong. Because of this reason, it’s a better idea to become aware of your pet’s shedding ways so that it’s stress-free to observe when it becomes unusual.
How to Reduce Shedding in Labrador Retrievers? 7 essential Tips
Decreasing your Labrador’s shedding can be difficult; however, with the right method, you can make an immense difference.
Start by brushing your dog frequently using a de-shedding tool, concentrating on the basecoat where most of the fur comes from. Furthermore, consider offering supplements, such as omega-3 fatty acids to your canine’s diet, which can improve their coat as well as health.
One more useful tip is to bathe your Lab 3 to 4 times a year with a kind shampoo and lukewarm water to eliminate loose hair and debris. Lastly, invest in a vacuum cleaner that’s made to knob pet hair, and utilize it regularly to keep your home free of additional fur.
It’s best to control your Lab’s shedding from all viewpoints. Because of this reason, I’ve accumulated a list of 7 easy-to-implement approaches for decreasing and managing your Lab’s shedding. Therefore, here are my more comprehensive solutions…
1. Get a Dog De-shedding Tool
The best method to groom your Labrador retriever is using a de-shedding tool made particularly for double fur. These tools furnish your Lab’s dense basecoat and remove any loose hairs! They are perfect to utilize when your pooch is “blowing his fur.” You’ll have to use this tool two times per week throughout this time.
2. Get a Lab Shedding Brush
Just like several dogs, your Lab will shed throughout the year. You can’t stop it completely, but brushing frequently with a slicker brush will retain his hair from always getting its way onto your flooring.
It doesn’t take much effort to brush him every day, either! Depending on your pooch, 2 to 3 times per week might be enough. There are numerous good slicker brushes that you can buy for your Labrador’s fur that will eliminate pet dander.
You have to brush your Labrador’s whole fur a few times, and the quantity of hair he sheds will be extremely decreased if you only groomed your dog once a week.
3. Groom and Bathe Your Dog 3 to 4 Times a Year
Consequently, as I previously discussed, your Lab will change his fur twice a year, in the fall and in the spring. Although you can’t prevent the hair bunches from ultimately falling out, bathing as well as brushing him in these times will help in removing more of it gradually.
Rather than letting his basecoat fall out naturally, you can loosen any excess fur and eliminate it at bathing time. Do not over-bathe because this strips your Labs’ natural oils triggering dry skin, which then leads to further shedding.
4. Switch to Food That Targets the Fur and Skin
You might have already delivered some thought to the food you offer your Labrador; however, did you realize that the kind of food you offer him has a noteworthy influence on his shedding habits?
Low-cost dog food is largely prepared with ingredients that some canines have difficulty digesting, for example, corn and grain, added preservatives, as well as chemicals. As an alternative, pick dog food having a protein source as the key ingredient. A protein deficiency causes dull and unkempt fur.
Giving a balanced diet will help your Labrador by decreasing his everyday shedding and maintaining a healthy life. By choosing food that targets the nutritional requirements of your Labrador, he’ll preserve nice healthy fur, and you can greatly decrease shedding.
5. Keep your dog Hydrated
You might not even understand it, but letting your Labrador drink additional water every day can decrease the amount of shedding! That’s as dogs will shed extra once they’re dehydrated. Besides, you can improve your canine’s overall well-being and decrease the amount of hair.
You can give your dog ice cubes in the summer to have him hydrated. Furthermore, you can also treat your Lab to frozen fruits like raspberries or strawberries to aid in satisfying his thirst. These can make a healthy substitute for commercial treats.
6. Stay Informed With Flea Treatment
Flea treatments will not reduce your dog’s shedding; however, they will stop him from itching and nibbling at himself especially if he becomes a tick or flea! The more your pooch diligently scratches to free himself from the distress of fleas or ticks, the more coats he pulls out in the procedure. No ticks as well as fleas mean less itching and less shedding.
Remember to stay informed about your Labrador’s flea treatment. This is achieved every three months for your dog, together with her deworming treatment.
7. Incorporate Omega Fatty Acids in Your Labrador’s Diet
I already discussed how to reduce Labrador retriever shedding by altering his diet. You can still include Omega fatty acids into your everyday schedule to decrease the amount of year-round shedding.
You can do this by picking particular foods that have Omega-3 fatty acids. You can also do it by giving your Labrador a daily supplement that has these nutrients. If your choice of food doesn’t have suitable oils, another substitute is to add a bit of olive oil to your dog’s food. Olive oil has omega-3 fatty acids that improve the skin and fur. Ask your vet on how much to offer your dog.
Offering Omega fatty acids will mean far less shedding, and your Labrador will be in good health simultaneously!
What can I feed my Lab to stop shedding?
Go for protein sources such as salmon, white fish, as well as other fish, because they combine high-quality protein with fatty acids that can improve your dog’s fur health.
Can eggs stop your dog’s shedding?
Eggs can be a healthy addition to a dog’s diet and maintain healthy fur and skin; however, this does not mean that they decrease shedding on their own. Besides, protein, amino acids, plus biotin are all ample in eggs and are essential elements for healthy fur.
Labrador retrievers shed a lot, however, you don’t have to go foolish with the vacuum daily. With these tips, you can guess way less pooch hair around your home: Brush frequently and use a de-shedding tool throughout the heavy shedding season in spring and fall.
Include more baths into your dog’s schedule, where the warm water will aid in clearing away additional hair and mud. Buy a smart vacuum, such as an iRobot or Roomba, which you can work even once you’re not home.
Enhance your lab’s water consumption by offering cold and clean water frequently throughout the day to keep your dog hydrated and healthy. Add additional nutrients, minerals, and essential vitamins to your dog’s diet.
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