Love Your Dog, Hate the Dog Hair?
Like many people who love their dogs, you probably regard your dog as a member of your family. That means your dog spends time with you indoors, and in some cases, shares your bedroom or even your bed with you. If only you could do something about the hair the dog leaves behind.
Most of us care more about having the dog than having to clean up dog hair in the house. We regard regular dog hair clean up as a small price to pay for the joy of dog ownership. However, there are some ways you can minimize the amount of hair your dog sheds in your home.
What You Can Do About It
Dogs, like other animals, shed their hair as a way to replenish old, damaged hair with new hair. The purpose of hair is to help with sensation, skin protection, and regulation of body temperature. Some breeds shed more than other breeds. Understanding that, you can take a few easy steps to reduce the amount of shedding by your dog.
Rule Out Health Problems
The first step is to check with your vet about the volume your dog sheds. If it is unusually heavy for the breed, your dog’s shedding could be a health problem that you haven’t identified. Heavy shedding can be a symptom of allergies, anxiety, or parasites.
Change Your Dog’s Diet
Shedding can be exacerbated by a poor diet or a nutritional deficiency. Just like with humans, a well-balanced and healthy diet can go a long way to having a healthy body. In dogs, a healthy diet will help keep shedding down to a more manageable level.
Put your dog on a healthy diet. Consult with your vet to learn about good quality food and the amounts your dog needs. Realize that an imbalanced or poor diet will deprive your dog of the nutrients it needs for a healthy coat. Your dog needs the right amounts of good quality protein, fat, and essential fatty acids to normalize the amount of shedding. Also, add some moist food to the diet. It is surprising how much the quality of food affects the degree of shedding and the health of the coat.
You can reduce the amount of hair in your home by grooming the dog regularly. That means bathing the dog with a good dog shampoo and conditioner. Human shampoos are too harsh for a dog’s skin. Dogs have very thin skin and human shampoos can be uncomfortable and dry out your dog’s skin.
Also, brush the dog regularly – do it outside or in the garage to keep the hair out of your house. Ideally, brush the dog daily, or at least several times each week. After just a few days of this, it will take less time to brush it out, and you should notice less shedding in your house. Consult with a professional groomer about what type of brush or comb works best for your dog’s breed and type of hair. If you use the wrong tool, you can damage the dog’s undercoat and make the experience unpleasant for your dog.
For very short-haired dogs, you may think no brushing is needed. However, their coats and skin respond very well to using a hand-mitt. It will remove loose hair very well on short haired dogs that shed a lot, such as a Doberman or a Dalmatian. It also works well on Labrador retrievers, Bulldogs, Boxers, and breeds with similar coats. A hand-mitt or rubber curry comb will also massage and stimulate the dog’s circulation, which will also help the coat shine.
If your dog has a heavy coat, try using a grooming vacuum. It will get the dander and loose hair deeper than you can access with a brush. It does a great job of bringing the dog’s natural oils to the surface. Before long your dog’s coat will shine and feel better to the touch than it ever has before.
Use a Professional Groomer
To really keep your dog’s coat healthy and the shedding under control, try getting the dog professionally groomed on a regular basis. Professional grooming will help you keep the shedding in check, as well as notify you of any health issues that may be developing on the dog’s skin.
Contact Paw Pals for more information
For more tips on controlling pet hair in your home, call the pet experts at Paw Pals. They are experienced with pet care and pet health issues. They are always available to help you with your own four-legged companion. Be sure to inquire about their pet sitting services, too. With Paw Pals pet sitting services, you can be comfortable leaving your pet home for long hours, but never alone. Paw Pals pet sitters are trained and licensed pet sitters. Call for more information.