What Causes Excessive Canine Shedding?

by Naomi Millburn
    Hair loss sometimes points to parasites in dogs.

    Hair loss sometimes points to parasites in dogs.

    Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images

    Shedding is just a fact of life for the majority of dogs -- and also for the people who love them. Although some canines naturally shed a lot, inordinate shedding can occasionally signify a medical issue in pooches. If you have any concerns about your cutie's degree of shedding, set up a prompt appointment with the veterinarian.

    Excessive shedding in dogs is often linked to nutritional issues. This could mean that a dog simply isn't receiving the appropriate nourishment from his meals. This could also denote an intolerance to certain ingredients in his food. If you are concerned about your pet's diet with regard to shedding, talk to your vet about selecting the right foods for your dog -- ones with appropriate balances of everything from proteins to carbohydrates. Not only are dietary issues sometimes linked to shedding, they're also sometimes linked to the emergence of lackluster and overly dry fur.

    A dog's surroundings can also affect his level of shedding. If your dog is outside a lot, then you might notice more shedding along with the extended brightness of the spring months. If the weather outside is frightful and the heat is perpetually on in your residence, your pet might not only shed more, he also might develop a case of frustrating skin dryness, too.

    Excessive shedding in canines can be a sign of major frustration, as well. A lot of different life factors can cause a dog to turn into a big bundle of nerves, whether divorce between his owners, new pets in the home or the abrupt absence of a beloved caretaker. Frustration and strain can also cause dogs to have flimsy and less lustrous coats, as well.

    Hormonal factors can sometimes contribute to big time canine shedding. Female canines who have just completed their heat cycles frequently shed a lot, as do pregnant individuals and those who recently gave birth to puppies. Many dogs -- male and female alike -- frequently shed heavily after undergoing neuter or spay procedures.

    Excessive loss of hair in dogs can occasionally be a sign of various health ailments. Skin infections can trigger major shedding, as can cancer, liver or kidney disease and thyroid issues. The use of medicine can occasionally even increase shedding.

    Constant licking of the coat can sometimes lead to big and noticeable clumps of fur missing. If your pooch has a habit of licking and chewing his fur seemingly nonstop, then you might have an answer for all of the stray hairs lounging around on your sofa, rug and bedding.

    If your doggie sheds a lot, you can usually cut down on the pesky hairs that appear all throughout your home by making a point to comb and brush his coat regularly. Always notify your vet of any shedding that concerns you, however. No matter what, frequent vet appointments are a must for dogs. Carefully monitor the state of your dog's coat. Fur can communicate a lot about a pet's condition. If you notice conspicuous patches of missing fur, irritation, redness or fur that just seems a lot less shiny and strong than before, make that vet appointment immediately.

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    About the Author

    Naomi Millburn has been a freelance writer since 2011. Her areas of writing expertise include arts and crafts, literature, linguistics, traveling, fashion and European and East Asian cultures. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in American literature from Aoyama Gakuin University in Tokyo.

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