How to Make a Dog Lose Its Winter Coat

by Judith Willson

The Lab's double coat is helpful in the winter.

The response of many animals to bitterly cold winters is to grow a thicker coat, which they moult when the weather starts to warm. Wolves do this, and so do many but not all dog breeds. The result is that, unless you change the grooming routine, every spring you’ll have a home covered in dog hair and a scraggly-looking and possibly matted dog. Give him a hand changing his coat and you’ll both be more comfortable.

Step 1

Spread an old sheet over the grooming spot to catch loose hair.

Step 2

Take up daily brushing and combing as soon as your dog begins to moult. The signs are more loose hair than normal and his coat looking lumpy or rather moth-eaten.

Step 3

Pull out loose hair with your fingers. This won’t hurt him, as it is coming out anyway. To make certain you don’t pull too hard, try pulling at sections of his coat between your index and third finger, rather than finger and thumb. The loose hair will come away easily, the rest won’t.

Step 4

Use a shedding rake to remove loose undercoat, if your dog has one. Depending on the breed and how fast he is shedding, you may need to do this every day along with normal brushing and combing or every two or three days. Keep going until you have removed all the dead hair.

Step 5

Shake the sheet outside or into a trash bag.

Step 6

Vacuum or sweep up loose hair where you were grooming. You might as well vacuum everywhere else there is dog hair afterward to save time later.

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