Labrador Shedding: Here Are Useful Tips To Reduce Lab Shedding
If you are thinking about getting a Labrador, you won’t be let down by the decision because they are such a popular breed.
There is no doubt that you will have many questions, one of which will be about how to properly care for them, particularly how to groom their stunning coats.
You might also be curious about whether or not Labradors shed their fur. Labradors do shed. Because of their double coat, they naturally have a lot of shedding, which continues throughout the year.
Shedding also becomes exceptionally heavy throughout the spring and fall seasons because clumps of their dense undercoat fall out in response to the shift in temperature that occurs with each season.
Even though they have short hair, breeds with a double coat, like the Labrador Retriever, are known to have a lot of shedding because of the double coat… This behavior is referred to as “blowing the coat” in the canine community.
To understand the best ways to keep your Lab’s shedding under control, you will first need to understand why he sheds so much in the first place.
If you know what to anticipate, you will be more prepared to handle the shedding process when it takes place. You will discover everything there is to know about Labrador shedding in this post. I’ll tell you:
- Why Labradors lose their hair
- Identifying instances of irregular shedding
- When the shedding season begins and when it concludes, as well as what to anticipate
Solutions for shedding, such as minimizing and regulating the amount of shedding
When we come to the remedies section, we will give you some best recommendations for reducing your Labrador’s amount of shedding.
Why Do Labradors Have A High Rate Of Shedding?
You might be perplexed to know just how much hair some breeds of short-haired dogs actually lose. You will find little balls of fur in places you would have never thought to look, such as the interior of your kitchen drawers and your jacket pockets.
It spreads like wildfire! The type of coat that a Labrador possesses is the key to unraveling the mystery of the breed’s prodigious amount of shedding… Labradors have a dense double coat, which causes them to shed a lot.
The outer coat is wiry and harsh and acts as a waterproof barrier, while the undercoat comprises a layer of fine, soft hairs that act as a windbreaker in the summer and an insulator in the winter.
During the normal growth cycle of the hair, the older and more damaged hair will naturally shed. Breeds that are classified as “double-coated” have two distinct layers of fur.
When studying the genetics of a dog’s coat, you’ll notice that each hair follicle produces 1-2 topcoat (guard) hairs in addition to many undercoat hairs.
Puppies are born with a single coat, but beginning at three months, they will develop their adult coat, which will continue to grow until they are about one year old.
In addition, wolves, which are believed to be the domestic dog’s most direct surviving ancestor, have a double coat, which is also thought to represent an ancestral characteristic.
However, single-coated breeds do not have an undercoat due to a gene mutation; as a result, they shed significantly less. This is because the undercoat is the coating layer most likely to shed when the seasons change.
When we look into the history of the Labrador, we see that these dogs required a dense, woolly undercoat to keep them warm when they were swimming in freezing waters and retrieving objects from those waters.
They had an additional layer of protection against the rain thanks to their protective coat. Because they can adapt to various climatic circumstances, Labradors make fantastic working dogs for the great outdoors.
Which Color Of Labs Sheds The Most?
You may have heard that the chocolate Lab sheds more than a black Lab, the yellow Lab sheds the most, and the black Lab sheds the least.
However, you may not have heard that the chocolate Lab sheds more than a black Lab. Which statements are accurate, and which color of Lab sheds the most hair?
There is no difference in the quantity of hair shed by chocolate, black, or yellow Labrador. There is no relationship between the color of the coat and the amount of shedding or maintenance necessary.
It is untrue that certain colors would shed more or less than others throughout their lifetimes. No matter what color their coats are, Labrador retrievers share the same qualities.
Some owners of yellow Labs were under the impression that their dogs shed more when they had dark-colored carpeting because they thought that the yellow fur would be easier to spot against the darker background.
And vice versa, it is almost certain that darker-colored fur will be seen more frequently on lighter-colored carpets and flooring. Molting is the same for both short-haired and long-haired Labradors; therefore, there is no distinction between the two types.
Consider getting a Labradoodle if you are serious about finding a dog that sheds less than a Labrador (Labrador and Poodle mix). Your offspring will not shed as much as a purebred Lab would because the Poodle is a breed that naturally produces less dog hair.
By the way, if you’re thinking about getting something for your dog, look at some of the items I recommend below. Also, check out the Ollie deal, where you get half off your first box!
Season of Shedding for Labradors
You might not be aware that the shedding patterns of the Labrador follow a schedule, but this is generally the case. In addition to the typical amount of hair they shed throughout the year, Labrador Retrievers shed more heavily at particular months.
When exactly does the Labrador go through its seasonal shedding? The spring and the fall are the times of year explicitly designated for the shedding season of Labrador Retrievers.
The process of your dog’s coat changing, often known as “blowing,” can take anywhere from two to three weeks and sometimes even longer.
As a result, the Labrador retriever shedding season takes place throughout September, October, or November, as well as March, April, and May.
The changing of the seasons causes your Labrador’s coat to transform, which enables the dog better adapt to the new environment. As the temperature rises, he will no longer need his bulky winter undercoat and instead opt for a more lightweight summer coat.
As the temperature drops, the lighter undercoat he wore during the warmer months will fall off, and he will replace it with a heavier, warmer coat to get through the winter. Because of this, he can maintain his level of comfort over the entire year.
His coarse undercoat will begin to shed in clumps for approximately two to three weeks each time it sheds. It will be impossible for you to miss seeing it soar in the air!
During this period, your dog will molt all of his dead undercoat, which will result in a significant amount of excessive shedding.
Shedding All Throughout The Year
Even though the shedding will be at its worst when your Labrador “blows his coat,” it should be expected that he will continue to shed regularly throughout the year.
This is normal and takes place as part of the natural development cycle and shedding process of the hair on your dog. As was said earlier, this constant shedding occurs in all Labradors, regardless of their coat color, throughout the entire year.
Why Does My Lab Suddenly Shed So Much? Shedding That Is Not Normal
After you have understood the regular shedding schedule for your Labrador, you need to be aware that not all shedding is normal.
Some patterns of hair loss are indicators of health problems that a veterinarian should treat. If your Lab starts shedding fur at an abnormally high rate out of the blue, you will need to investigate the cause.
Labradors may experience sudden shedding (outside of their regular cycle) for causes related to their health. A poor diet, dehydration, allergies, parasites, stress, and worry are all potential causes of this condition.
Hypothyroidism, Cushing’s syndrome, undeveloped hair follicles, pregnancy, and adverse reactions to medications are some of the less prevalent causes of hair loss.
The experts can tell the difference between natural shedding and fur loss caused by variables related to health, nutrition, and the environment. The abnormal shedding can be identified based on the following signs and symptoms:
- Dry or brittle hair
- Irritation, open sores, blisters
- Bald patches
- Dislike of petting
The question now is, what exactly is the deal with these irregularities? Let us take a proper look at some of the potential causes of unusual fur loss in dogs, including the following:
- Poor diet: A healthy and balanced diet will give a consistent supply of the necessary nutrients. These nutrients are essential for the hair of your Labrador to remain safely embedded within the hair follicles. As a result, hair loss can be caused by eating an unhealthy diet that is weak in essential nutrients.
- Dehydration: Blood flow and oxygen delivery to tissues and organs, including the skin, are impaired when your dog is dehydrated. As the skin’s suppleness decreases, the fur becomes more easily shed.
- Parasites, ticks, lice, and fleas: Your dog’s skin will become itchy due to all of them, which will cause him to bite or scratch. This results in the loss of the animal’s fur, and the skin that has been chewed on can get infected.
- Underdeveloped hair follicles: Although it isn’t necessarily hereditary, this condition can be present at birth. The development of the hair follicles is disrupted, leading to patchy or complete hair loss.
- Cushing disease: A benign tumor causes this condition in the pituitary, which leads to an overabundance of production of the stress hormone cortisol, leading to hair loss in dogs. Each year, Cushing’s disease affects the lives of 100,000 dogs, with canines older than six years having a larger chance of developing the condition.
- Hypothyroidism: Hypothyroidism can manifest in several ways, including increased shedding, hair loss, and thinning. However, it is not common in dogs, and Labrador Retrievers are not among the three most likely to be affected.
- Skin trauma: Skin injuries, such as bacterial and fungal infections, food and other sensitivities, some pet medicines such as steroids, inflammatory disease, and burns can all cause abnormal shedding. It is also possible to experience temporary hair loss while nursing an infant, recovering from an illness, or while pregnant.
- Anxiety and stress: Your Labrador may chew his hair and skin, resulting in patches and behavioral issues that create stress and worry, such as separation anxiety or obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). This condition, known as acral lick dermatitis, affects the skin. In addition to parasites and other allergy disorders, they can be caused by certain conditions.
Controlling your dog’s regular heavy shedding, whether year-round or seasonal, requires similar approaches to prevention and treatment, regardless of the underlying cause of your dog’s abnormal shedding.
Labrador Shedding Solutions
Having a Labrador as a pet is a rewarding experience in and of itself. However, there are certain drawbacks associated with it. It doesn’t matter what season it is; your dog won’t stop losing its fur!
There is no known way to halt shedding, but there are things that could be done to cut down on it and keep it under control.
How to Decrease the Shedding of Your Labrador
Brush your Labrador daily and use a de-shedding tool at least twice per week, increasing the frequency of your sessions during excessive shedding seasons.
Include omega-3 fatty acids in your pet’s diet as part of a diet designed to promote healthy skin and fur. Ensure he is well hydrated, wash him three to four times a year, and treat him for fleas and other parasites.
To combat the shedding that your Labrador experiences, it is best to approach the problem from multiple perspectives.
Because of this, I’ve put together a list of seven simple methods that you may do to cut down on and get control of the amount of shedding your Labrador does. The following are some of my more in-depth suggestions.
Invest In A De-shedding Tool For Your Labrador.
Utilizing a de-shedding tool specifically made for a double coat is the most effective method for grooming your Labrador.
These tools are designed to work with the thick undercoat of your Lab and help remove any stray hairs that would otherwise end up dispersed throughout your home.
When your dog is “blowing his coat,” it is the perfect time to use these items. During this period, you will need to utilize this tool biweekly.
FURminator is an undercoat de-shedding gadget that may be purchased through Amazon. It does a really good job of removing all of the dead and loose hair as it works its way through your dog’s guard coat without causing any damage to the coat or cutting his skin in the process.
Over the years, I’ve experimented with several different pieces of de-shedding equipment, but I’ve never found one that compares favorably to the FURminator.
Invest In A Quality Labrador Shedding Brush.
Like most other breeds of dog, your Labrador will shed hair at all times of the year.
You won’t be able to completely prevent it from happening, but if you brush his hair frequently using a slicker brush, it won’t be as likely for his hair to wind up on your furniture and floors.
It also does not require much work to brush him every day. Walking your dog two or three times a week may be adequate, depending on the breed.
You may keep your Labrador’s topcoat in good condition and free of pet dander by using one of the several high-quality slicker brushes available today.
The Hertzko Self Cleaning Slicker Brush is one that I recommend purchasing from Amazon. Additionally, it works wonderfully for detangling knotted hair while being easy to use.
Additionally, it is simple to clean because it comes with a button that, when pressed, detaches all of the furs from the brush (like the FURminator).
If you groom your Labrador once a week, brushing his entire coat only once or twice will significantly minimize the amount of hair he loses, compared to the amount of hair he loses if you groom him every seven days.
Give Your Lab A Bath And H Haircut Three To Four Times A Year.
As a result, as I mentioned before, your Labrador will shed his old coat twice every year, once every winter, and once every summer. Bathing and brushing him during these times will help get rid of more of it at once.
Even though you won’t be able to stop the hair clumps from falling out ultimately, you can help get rid of more of them all at once by doing so.
You can brush out any remaining fur and then remove it when you bathe him, rather than waiting for his undercoat to shed naturally throughout this period.
Never give your Labradors an excessively long or frequent bath because doing so will remove their natural oils, leading to dry skin and further shedding.
There are also specialized shampoos for dogs that help reduce shedding and work to release the undercoat while the dog is being washed.
You may also discover ones enriched with Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, like the FURminator deShedding Ultra Premium Dog Shampoo from Amazon, which helps reduce shedding and is one of the products you can find that has this enhancement.
Switch To Food That Is Beneficial To The Skin And Coat
You might have given some thought to the food that you feed your Labrador, but were you aware that the sort of food that you feed him has a considerable impact on how he sheds his coat?
Corn and other grains, in addition to the additional preservatives and chemicals, are commonly included in inexpensive dog food, both of which can be difficult for certain dogs to digest.
Instead, you should look for dog food with high-quality protein as the principal ingredient. A lack of protein leads to a dull and disheveled appearance in the coat.
Your Labrador’s coat will suffer if he isn’t getting the necessary nourishment since the protein he is getting will be used to maintain his muscle mass instead of improving it.
Suppose you are seeking additional information on canine nutrition, the many diets for your dog, and exactly what he can and cannot eat.
Even though it is more expensive, it will benefit your Labrador by minimizing the amount of hair he loses each day and ensuring that he lives a long and healthy life.
Your Labrador will have a good, healthy coat for as long as you feed him food that meets his specific nutritional requirements, and you will notice a significant decrease in the quantity of shedding that occurs during the year.
Keep You Lab Hydrated
You might not even be aware of this, but letting your Labrador drink more water daily will help reduce the amount of hair they shed. This is because thirsty dogs will shed more hair than normal.
Providing your dog with approximately one ounce of water for every pound of body weight can improve his overall health and lessen the amount of hair that ends up all over your house.
You should consider purchasing a dog water fountain for your pet, such as the Petsafe Drinkwell, which is sold on Amazon. This will not only encourage your dog to drink but also prevent you from having to do so regularly.
This one is particularly appealing to me because it has two stages and carbon filters that can eliminate undesirable tastes and odors in the water.
Pro Tip! You can help your Labrador stay hydrated during the hot summer months by feeding him ice cubes.
You can also assist your doggo in quenching his thirst by giving him frozen fruits like raspberries or strawberries like you would a human child. These are delicious and nutritious alternatives to the goodies sold in stores.
Maintain Current Knowledge Regarding Flea Treatment
Flea treatments will not stop your Labrador from shedding, but they will stop him from excessively scratching and gnawing at himself if he has a tick or flea infestation.
The more vigorously and continuously your dog scratches to relieve the itching and discomfort caused by fleas or ticks, the more fur he will tear out in the process. There will be less itching and shedding if there are no ticks and fleas.
Keep in mind that the flea medication for your Labrador should be kept up-to-date. In conjunction with her therapy for intestinal worms, this is carried out on my dog every three months.
Make Sure Your Lab Gets Enough Omega Fatty Acids in Their Diet
I have already shown how modifying your Labrador’s diet will help minimize the amount of hair he sheds. Integrating omega-3 fatty acids into your daily routine is still possible to lessen the amount of shedding that occurs throughout the year.
You can accomplish this goal by selecting foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids. You can also accomplish this goal by giving your Labrador a daily dietary supplement comprised of these components.
You should look into Zesty Paws Omega-3 Alaskan Fish Oil Treats, which are available on Amazon. They are available in either a bacon or chicken flavor and have thousands of reviews that are positive.
If the dog food you choose does not include the necessary amount of oils, you can always supplement his diet with a little olive oil.
Olive oil is very rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which are beneficial to the skin and coat of an animal. First, you should discuss the appropriate dosage with your pet’s veterinarian.
I don’t have to worry about this because the cold-pressed dog food that I provide to my dog already contains fish oils and vegetable oil (rapeseed), both of which are essential in maintaining the health of her skin and coat.
If you feed your Labrador a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids, you will notice a significant reduction in the amount of shedding they do over time. In addition, your dog’s overall health will improve.
Will Shaving A Lab Help Its Shedding?
You may be wondering one more thing now that you know what to do to regulate and lessen your Labrador’s amount of shedding. This is especially true if you’ve seen dogs with various hairstyles. Does shaving a Lab help reduce the amount of hair they shed?
Shaving your Labrador will not reduce the amount of hair that they shed.
It is crucial to remember that you should not shave a dog that has a double coat because doing so may irritate his skin, put him at risk for bacterial and fungal infections, and harm the regrowth.
Shaving also prevents your dog’s body from regulating its temperature, leaving him more vulnerable to the effects of severe temperatures.
The fur used in Labrador coats is not comparable to human hair; it serves a unique purpose, and the fur follicles do not regenerate in the same way that human hair does.
It is not recommended that you shave your Labrador’s hair unless there are compelling medical reasons.
The following is a summary of the article’s most important points: In Labrador Retrievers:
- The everyday routine consists of a significant amount of shedding.
- Because they molt their undercoat in the spring and fall, they will also shed more hair throughout these seasons.
- A poor diet, a lack of hydration, certain health issues, fleas, and parasites can all contribute to abnormal shedding in animals.
- Shaving your dog’s fur will not diminish the amount of hair that they shed.
Even though you can’t stop your dog from shedding completely, there are many things you can do to cut down on the amount of hair that gets shed. A quick review of the steps to take is as follows:
- If your dog has a double coat, consider purchasing a de-shedding tool and brushing them regularly.
- Bath your Labrador three to four times a year.
- You should switch your dog’s diet to one that emphasizes maintaining a healthy coat and skin (Omega fatty acids).
- Maintain your knowledge of the most recent flea and tick treatments.
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