How to tackle hair shedding of your pet

Shedding is a natural process in which your pet gets rid of old and dead hair to get a shiny new coat. Some breeds shed more as compared to others; it depends on various factors – season, overall health, medical conditions, etc. Pet parents can control shedding in these easy and effective ways.
Pick the right tools

Shedding tools are specially designed to remove dead hair from the coat and make it smooth and silky. So regardless of whether your pet sheds seasonally or all year-round, selecting the right shedding tool can greatly reduce the shedding of their fur.

These tools come in many forms (see box). Consult your veterinarian if you are unsure whether your dog has an undercoat or not.

A healthy diet

Be it overall growth, development, or maintenance, a healthy diet is the prerequisite for all body functions. The right nutrients will also help in healthy growth of hair and will prevent hair breakage and hair loss.

Supplements enriched with omega-3 fatty acids are great for hair and coat health.

Hydration is imperative

Keep your pet hydrated at all times. Dehydrated skin is one of the biggest causes of hair loss. Keep a keen eye on your pet’s water intake. Experts recommend that a dog should ideally drink an ounce (around 30 ml) of water per pound of body weight every day.

De-shedding treatments

Regular bathing cleans your pet’s coat and gets rid of dead hair. Use a good quality de-shedding shampoo and conditioner while bathing your pet to tackle the shedding menace. These shampoos and conditioners contain moisturisers and omega fatty acids which help in keeping the skin hydrated and also promote healthier and stronger follicles. Consult your vet to know the right frequency of giving your pet a bath.

When to consult a vet?

Certain medical conditions such as fungal infections, parasites, stress, or sunburn also cause excess shedding. Hormonal issues as a result of a thyroid imbalance cause skin inflammations, and make the hair brittle, which leads to excessive hair loss. If your pet suffers from skin allergies, it may lead to chronic skin inflammation which causes itchiness and rashes. When your pet scratches, it causes even more hair fall. If you notice any unusual signs of hair loss or sudden hair fall in your pet, it is recommended you should consult your vet.

Get the right brush

l Bristle Brush: The bristle brush can be used on all breeds but is most suitable for the ones with short hair and smooth coats.This brush helps to remove the dead hair and makes the coat super soft and shiny. Some bristle brushes also come with a pin brush on the other side which can be used for removing knots in the fur.

l Pin Brush: The pin brush is good for breeds with wooly or curly coats that are medium to long in length. It is used for removing dead hair and mats from the coat. The plastic coated bristles prevent scratching your pet’s skin and allow smooth brushing.

l Slicker Brush: The slicker brush has fine wire bristles that helps tackle mats and tangles. This brush can be used on all breeds. But since long haired breeds tend to develop tangles a lot more as compared to other breeds, it is most effective for them.

l Rakes: Rakes are used for removing loose or dead hair from your dog’s undercoat. They also prevent your dog’s coat from getting matted and tangled. Rakes are best used on thick haired or double-coated dogs.;

By Anand Pittie

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