Dogs are adorable. Especially when they have a healthy and, beautiful coat. Unfortunately, not all are blessed with it. Some have dry, flaky, and balding fur. Here are the causes and preventions of dog hair problems and how to maintain a healthy shiny coat.
Welcoming a dog into your life is like having a new baby. It comes with many responsibilities but is very rewarding. This includes providing proper nutrition, a good amount of exercise, a comfortable and safe place to stay, playtime together, and taking care of his/her coat. Maintaining a clean and shiny coat is critical for a pooch’s health. In fact, a dog’s fur can indicate possible health issues.
One of the main causes of a poor coat condition is nutrient deficiency. Dogs’ diet plays important role in keeping their hair smooth and shiny. They need sufficient amounts of (1) Healthy fats for their skin to secrete natural oils. And (2) proteins to maintain the balance of shedding and growing new hair. Dogs shed regularly and proteins help them generate new hair growth.
Fortunately, there are many high-quality dog foods that have all the nutrients needed for a nice and shiny coat. All you need to do is feed your pooch with reputable dog food. You can also offer vitamins and supplements to nourish his/her hair even more. Your fur baby will benefit from Omega 3 and 6 essential fatty acids and vitamin B complex supplements which can help nourish skin and coat.
Internal or external parasites also have negative effects on pooches’ fur. Internal parasites such as worms affect a dog’s ability to absorb all the nutrients needed for its body. Which can influence the coat’s condition as discussed above. External parasites on the other hand, like ticks, fleas, and mites can cause skin irritation. Leading to intense scratching, dry hair, and excessive shedding.
There are microscopic mites that cannot be seen by our naked eyes. So, if you noticed abnormal scratching, skin redness, sores, and hair loss in your pooch it is best to consult a vet. Early detection is important to prevent it from getting worse. Mites can lead to mange, a skin disease that causes severe itching, hair loss, and formation of lesions and scabs.
Other health issues that result in fur problems and internal diseases. Including hormonal imbalance, metabolic disease, or cancer. Obesity and arthritis can also cause hair dryness and dullness as they prevent pooches from grooming themselves. The normal biting and scratching of dogs on their bodies help them loosen old hairs and grow new ones.
Aside from health issues, grooming is another important factor that affects dogs’ coats. Although bathing is necessary for their hygiene, it is crucial not to overdo it. Excessive bathing can wash out natural oils from pooches’ bodies causing skin and hair dryness. The recommended bath time for dogs is every 4 weeks. This allows their bodies to release natural oils in the skin and help moisturize their coat.
It is critical to carefully choose a shampoo for your pet. Some dog shampoos are too strong and can dry out their coat or even cause dandruff due to flaky skin. Always go for gentle shampoos. Those with oats, olive oil, or coconut oil are great to use as they help moisturize skin and fur. Avoid using anti-tick shampoos as they can cause hair to dry. In addition, there are dog conditioners that you can take advantage of to nourish your pet’s coat more.
Remember to brush your fur baby regularly. Regardless if he/she has a long or short coat. Brushing helps remove loose hair and prevent matting. Matting is common in double-coated and long-haired breeds like Maltese and Shih Tzu. Without regular brushing, their fur tangles and wraps around itself making their coat the mat on their skin.
A small patch of matted coat can spread into the whole body if not attended for a long period of time. This condition is very uncomfortable for pooches as the heat or cold can be trapped in between the skin and fur. It also makes them prone to external parasites. The matted coat needs to be cut and removed. In severe cases, a blade is used to scrape the tangled fur from the dog’s skin.
As mentioned at the beginning of this article, taking care of a dog comes with lots of responsibilities. But it is very rewarding. A dog can give you happiness and unconditional love that are sometimes difficult to find in human friends. With this, they surely deserve to be well taken care of.