Australian Shepherd Coats & Coat Blowing
Im going to bet this term is new to you as it was to me before my dog taught me all about coat blowing the hard way.
All it actually means is that your dog changes over his coat seasonally, and this process is called coat blowing. Is it the same as shedding? Yes and no. Shedding happens all year. Coat blowing is a whole new level of shedding.
Im not sure where the term itself comes from, but I used to brush an avalanche of fur off my shep on the lawn outside, and it used to blow around and form drifts of fur until the birds took it away to line their nests. Yes. I promise. Birds love coat blowing season!
Should You Shave Your German Shepherd
You might think that shaving your German Shepherd is a great way to keep them cool in the summer.
Shaving works great for a single coated dog. Their coat will grow back just like human hair does.
For your double-coated GSD shaving them will ruin their coat for many years to come.
Remember your GSD’s double-coated has 2 distinct coats, with 2 distinct purposes.
They work together to keep your dog comfortable and healthy. Cool in summer and warm in winter.
The outer guard hairs, and fends off water, dirt, and insect bites. The undercoat is soft and fuzzy and works to insulate your dog from heat and cold.
And the outer coat takes much longer to grow than does the undercoat.
In this heat map, the yellow area is shaved and the purple area still has fur. Shaving your dog will not help them cool down. In fact, it has the opposite effect.
This heat map clearly shows that shaving your dog increases their body temp. It doesn’t cool them down. Courtesy of Flir.com
Shave these off, and your GSD has a serious problem
What you’re doing is removing both the protective layer and the insulating layer. If your dog has no fur you’re putting them at risk.
The undercoat, also known as a false coat will grow back fast, but the guard hairs take much longer or won’t at all.
Without both these coats, your dog will be hotter in the summer and cold in the winter.
It can also irritate their skin, cause infection, and make them uncomfortable.
What Is The Coat Of The German Shepherd Like
The German Shepherd was developed in an area and during a time when dogs were necessary to help herd flocks of either sheep or cattle.
These dogs were bred in the often harsh northern European climate, and many of them had double coats as a result.
The German Shepherd Dog is one of these such sheepherding dogs. Ironically, although these dogs had an undercoat, the topcoat of fur was often less likely to pick up burrs, making care easier for the shepherds and farmers.
The German Shepherds topcoat is also resistant to dirt and grime. Furthermore, snow, rain, nor mud was able to penetrate the water-resistant undercoat of the German Shepherd Dog. This insulation of sorts gave the GSD a means of protection when working outdoors.
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So Do German Shepherds Shed
Yes, German Shepherds shed throughout the year. How much they shed daily will depend on the type of coat they have and the season of the year.
Understandably, long-coated GSDs will shed more than their short or medium-coated counterparts. Nevertheless, they will all shed their undercoats twice a year during the shedding season.
What It Means If Your German Shepherd Is Shedding Too Much
A healthy German Shepherd should shed at a more regular rate. Sure, they will cover your home in fur anytime they are indoors, but it will be a predictable amount. And after a few rounds, you should be well aware of coat blowing season.
But what if they suddenly start shedding more quickly? And what if this shedding occurs at a time when it shouldnt be? Unfortunately, this is rarely a good sign.
Typically, sudden increases in shedding can point to health problems. These can include:
- Increases in stress levels
- Changes in hormone levels and their balance
- Fleas or ticks in their coat
- Intestinal parasites
- Or other health problems
There is some good news. Fortunately, most of these are not excessively dangerous. However, this does not mean you should ignore the situation and hope it goes away. They can be treated relatively easily only if you catch them early on.
If you notice any sudden changes in how your German Shepherd is shedding, we recommend taking them to your local vet. No online resource in the world can replace the act of an actual vet examining your dog.
Some solutions may be as simple as a change in diet. While others might involve some medication. Remember, always listen to your vets expert advise and you will be on the right track in no time.
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German Shepherd Coat Maintenance
Before we get into how to groom a German Shepherd for summer, there’s one thing you should know
They have high-maintenance coats!
Depending on the length of their fur, they will need daily to weekly brushing. But especially during the coat-blowing season, which happens twice a year.
If you’re struggling with tumbleweeds of hair from your German Shepherd, check out my article on the best vacuum for German Shepherd hair.
Regular grooming will keep your GSD comfortable and it’s essential for several reasons
- It distributes the natural oils in their fur.
- Regular grooming promotes a healthy coat and skin.
- And it prevents matting.
- But it’s way more than just a healthy exercise
- Regular grooming is a wonderful way to bond with your pooch.
My 3 are so in love with their grooming sessions, they tend to fall asleep!
Ideally, you should start grooming at a young age. This will help your GSD feel comfortable with all the grooming tools.
If you’ve got an adult dog or a rescue, it’s going to take some work getting them comfortable. But it’s not impossible
Using clicker training and positive reinforcement is a great way to teach any dog a new behavior.
Easy German Shepherd Shedding Solutions
You can start using these shedding solutions right away with your German Shepherd.
Its impossible to remove and clean every bit of hair from your home, but you can drastically reduce the amount of hair you have to deal with using these natural shedding solutions.
You can use all of these hair fall tips right away to help get your German Shepherds hair in better shape and reduce your stress.
Best of all?
Theyre so easy youll wonder why you didnt think of them before!
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Your Guide To German Shepherd Shedding
Intelligent and easily trained, a German Shepherd is one of the most popular breeds among dog lovers. German Shepherds are active, courageous, and excel in almost all activities. If you already own one, you will already know how protective they are. You may also know how much they tend to shed.
If you plan on becoming a German Shepherd owner, you should be prepared for your dogs shedding. In this article, we will discuss how to deal with your German Shepherd shedding and how it should not be a big problem.
Can I Shave My Shepherd To Reduce Shedding
When youre fed up with your German Shepherds shedding, it can be tempting to give up on regular grooming and shave them down to reduce how much hair is around your house. This is a very bad idea for a number of reasons.
- German Shepherds need their fur to protect them from the elements. In addition to opening your dog up to the chance of getting sunburned, shaving a GSD can also increase their risk of having a heat stroke because youve taken away one of the methods they use for regulating their temperature.
- Repeated shaving can damage your German Shepherds coat. This is especially true if your dog has or develops certain health conditions. Post-clipping alopecia is a real problem among double-coated dogs and may cause the hair to grow back patchy, cottony, or not at all.
- Your German Shepherd will still shed the hairs will just be smaller. While this may seem like a good thing, take it from a former groomer short hairs cause dog hair splinters more than naturally shed hairs, and those splinters can embed themselves in your clothing and furniture, making it harder to remove them.
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Hair And Skin Problems In German Shepherds
- Hair loss in patches
- Bald spots or thinning of the coat that doesnt resolve shortly
- Constant foot licking or face rubbing, especially to the point bald spots or hot spots appear
- Symmetrical hair loss on certain parts of the body for unknown reasons
- Hair loss thats accompanied by skin irritation, including redness, bumps, rashes, open sores, or scabs
- Dull, dry hair that pulls out easily in large clumps
- Scratching and itching constantly to the point the skin bleeds
Take your dog to the vet if you notice more hair loss than usual, inflamed skin, brittle fur thats dry, excessive or intense scratching, or bald patches .
German Shepherd Shedding: Do They Ever Stop
Find out everything you need to know about German Shepherd shedding, including how long it lasts, how bad is it, and know what you can do to keep it under control.
The German Shepherd is one of the mostpopular dog breeds for many reasons. And lets face it, who wouldnt want suchan intelligent, courageous, and loyal canine companion!
But before you bring a German Shepherdhome, you should know that their thick and plush double coat sheds, a lot!While having a dog that sheds might not be a deal-breaker, you should find outwhat exactly youre getting yourself into.
How bad is German Shepherd shedding? German Shepherds shed all year long, which has earned them the nickname German shedders. They also go through seasonal shedding twice a year, when they shed their undercoat, losing a huge amount of hair. Shedding cant be stopped, but it can be reduced with regular brushing and a high-quality diet.
To keep the shedding under control you will have to brush your German Shepherd at least three times a week and daily during the shedding season. However, excessive shedding can also be a sign of an underlying health condition so read on to find out more!
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Obtain A Brush & Use It Regularly
Your dog brush is going to be seeing a lot of action, so we advise investing in a high-quality product. And for double-coated dogs, I suggest going with the Furminator.
Plenty of German Shepherd owners swear by this product. Plus, I use this with both my dogs, a Corgi and an Australian Shepherd. Both of which, are double-coated dogs that shed just as much.
Now that you have a dog brush, be prepared to use it at least once a week. Brushing is going to be your main defense against keeping their topcoat healthy. However, you may want to brush them twice a week during coat blowing season.
Also, it helps prevent skin problems from developing while removing potential tangles or matted fur. If you dont brush your German Shepherd for a long enough time, the matting can become extremely painful for them.
When brushing, follow these four tips to ensure the whole experience goes well every time.
Why Does My German Shepherd Follow Me To The Bathroom
If your German Shepherd has a habit of following you to the bathroom then it could be because it wants to protect you but it could also be due to separation anxiety. This is where it doesnt like being left alone so it follows you to the bathroom because you normally shut it out and it doesnt like it.
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How To Reduce Shedding
The best way to reduce the fall of your German Shepherdâs fur everywhere around the house is to brush their coat daily. Regular brushing for 10 minutes can help you to collect all their loose fur at one place and reduce shedding around the house.
Brushing your dog is also a great way to clean their fur of any dirt or debris that might harm their coat. Give them occasional baths by using products that reduce shedding. Giving diets that are rich in protein and omega is another way to prevent excessive shedding in German Shepherds.
Top Coat Shedding Frequency
The top coat of a German Shepherd is the one that we get to touch when we pet a GSD. The topcoat has a very rough texture as I had mentioned before. The topcoat usually has a different color from the undercoat as well. The topcoat works as a protective layer for the German Shepherd Dog, protecting it from environmental hazards. The regular shedding that occurs is mostly for the topcoat. Even during brushing the dog, all the shedding that occurs is from the topcoat.
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What Is The Difference Between Shedding And Fur Loss
Theres another point we have to clear out of the way, and thats the difference between shedding and fur loss. Shedding is normal and natural. All dogs shed. Double-coated dogs like the Aussie just do it more spectacularly.
Fur loss, on the other hand, is a completely different kettle of fish. If your dogs fur becomes thinner in patches, or clumps of fur fall out even though youre keeping up your grooming routine, then somethings the matter. See the vet.
Look out for hot spots theyre areas where your dog licks and licks until theres a sore. That sore can get infected, making the spot even itchier, and of course, theres also fur loss. With my dog, the cause turned out to be separation anxiety, but it can be caused by pet food allergies too.
Allow Your Gsd More Access To Fresh Water
You might not even realize it, but allowing your German Shepherd to drink more water daily can greatly reduce the amount of shedding! Thats because dogs tend to shed a little bit more when theyre dehydrated.
If youre having trouble keeping up with your dogs water regimen, I recommend using an automatic dog water dispenser. This device allows you to fill up a big tub of water all at once, so you wont have to keep remembering to add more water to the bowl throughout the day.
Ive never had to use one of these however, Ive heard good things about them, and I think they can really do the trick. If I were choosing one from Amazon, I like the look of the Petsafe Drinkwell as its ideal for German Shepherds with its two-tiered design.
Tip! You can give your German Shepherd ice-cubes in the summer to keep him hydrated. You can also try frozen fruits such as raspberries or strawberries as an alternative healthy treat to help quench his thirst.
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What Are K9 Dog Dryers
K9 Dog Dryers are the largest-selling dog dryer brand in the USA. They offer a wide range of high-performance, high-velocity dryers that are essential in dog grooming. Their models range from small single-motor dryer to twin-motor dryer which is perfect for drying your dog and controlling its shedding.
German Shepherd Shedding Solution
Give your dog a hygienic environment
Well, a proper grooming up can help you a lot to handle the hair shedding activity of dog productively.
Everything starts with hygiene. You need to make sure that the dog isnt infected by any fleas, parasites or ticks.
You can go for flea shampoos or other pesticides that are readily available in pet stores.
In addition to it, make sure you properly clean up the beddings and blankets of the dog.
Once the dog is provided with a clean environment and a healthy diet, all the excessive hair shedding can be controlled.
Do realize that a dog with fleas cant be taken to a groomer in case you want to have him or her well-groomed and cute.
Groom up your dog
You need to brush the fur of the dog every day as a deep brushing helps in removing all the excess hair thats loose.
You can also nourish his skin coat with oils. On the other hand, you need to use all the de-shedding tools just before the spring arrives or else you have to spend all your time in cleaning your home.
Just before the winter coat falls in the spring, make sure you de-shed your German shepherd.
Maintain the nutrition balance of the food
You can add nutritious oil like olive or flax oils to the regular diet.
These oils contain omega-three fatty acids that help your dog to retain an inflamed skin, lowers the dandruff level and maintains the shiny coat texture of the dog.
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It’ll Save You Green Backs
It’s a definite money-saver over the life span of your dog. German Shepherd’s can live to the ripe old age of 15.
And although there is an upfront investment for grooming equipment, it won’t be long before you win that money back.
Grooming costs are based on how much fur your dog has. You have a German Shepherd and that equals A LOT of fur.
Here’s an example for 2019:
For a German Shepherd with a double coat that needs regular grooming from an experienced, professional groomer who knows their stuff the prices go something like this
Extra Brush Out: $16
That’s a whopping $164 per visit to the groomer per month!
And with a high maintenance coat like the German Shepherd’s, your GSD will need a minimum of 2 visits per month from the start of Spring to the end of Summer. That’s roughly 5 months.
If you have one dog, that adds up to $1620 per year!
So, you see, home-grooming makes a lot of financial sense!