This Article is About
cold water fish
omega oils
plain yogurt
stress levels
shiny coat
dog foods
hair and skin
heart health
healthy skin
hardest thing
Dog Shedding Part 2
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Dog Shedding Part 2

So you've slowed down on dog baths, opted for more brushing and your dog spends time outdoors every day, but your house - and you - are still covered in fur?

Excessive shedding is a sign of other problems. In humans, you can lose up to 200 hairs per day and still be considered healthy. More than that and the doctor will want to check your stress levels, hormones or your diet.

Same goes for dogs.

Your hair and skin is a mirror of what's going on internally and in that regard your dog is no different. You should look at your dog's diet at this point.

There are suddenly a rash of commercial dog foods that claim to be specifically formulated for healthy skin and a shiny coat, although I've never personally seen any difference whatsoever and I think you can get better, cheaper and healthier results from home.

Plain yogurt works almost instantaneously. Try mixing in a couple of tablespoons with a meal. The important thing to remember when you're making dietary changes is to do it gradually. You don't want to make the "cure" worse than the problem. Small doses, gradually, until you find what works exactly right for your dog is the key.

Omega oils also play a big part in hair health and they are also important in dogs' heart health. But there are so many supplements available, the hardest thing is finding which works the best for your dog. I also prefer to go the natural route and avoid pills unless its' absolutely necessary. A little cold water fish in your dogs' diet would be the easiest way to introduce omega oils into their diet without stressing their digestion. However, if that's not possible then pick a supplement and just remember moderation is key. I would cut the recommended dose by half initially. Too much extra oil added to your dog's diet can give them a diarrhea.

There are also a couple of Chinese herbal supplements on the market currently that have been used with much success in treating inflammatory conditions in dogs. Interestingly enough, skin conditions such as psoriasis, eczema, etc., have some of the same underlying causes as arthritis, allergies and other inflammatory diseases. Definitely worth a try if your pet is suffering from two or more of the above conditions.

After making some dietary changes, you can also step up your treatments of your dogs' hair itself to keep that excessive shedding in check. One of my favorites, probably because it's easy, is a beer rinse. After a bath, just pour a beer down your dog's back from neck to butt, massage down into their fur for a minute and let it sit for 10 minutes, then rinse. The hops leaves behind a beautiful shine. And when you're done bathing your dog, you should have a beer too because let's face it, it's kind of a lot of work.

Another home remedy that will leave behind shinier, well-conditioned hair is a mayonnaise treatment. It must be real mayonnaise though, not Miracle Whip; gotta have all those fattening egg yolks for this to work. After a bath just massage a handful or 2 of mayonnaise into your dog's fur and let it set for 10-15 minutes, then rinse.

A side note whenever you rub something edible and obviously yummy into your dog's fur, of course they're going to lick themselves afterward. It made me delicious Mom!

Another great, cheap, homemade conditioner is to take a few drops of Vitamin E oil, massage it into your dog's fur and then brush through. Vitamin E is a great emollient, cures dry skin and leaves hair soft and shiny.

Also try the same technique with rosemary oil. The rosemary is beneficial to the fur itself, leaving beautiful hair behind, it conditions the skin as well, so really massage it in and your dog will smell wonderful. At least for a while, right? You can buy rosemary hair oil already prepared from the health food store, but it's cheap and easy to make on your own with olive oil and rosemary essential oil.

One of the reasons that homeopathic medicine is the obvious "greener" and more practical route is that every treatment I just told you about can be used on you as well as your dog. No chemicals, dyes, alcohol, nothing to further aggravate sensitive skin. And it's cheap and easy. It's a win-win.

By now, your hot, furry mess of a dog should not only be shedding less but should be camera-ready with that soft, shiny fur. And you did it the natural way.

If not, if your pet is suffering from hot spots, bald spots, chewing themselves constantly, having digestion problems, lack of appetite, skin sores, etc., these are all signs of dog allergies, which I will discuss things you can do to treat your dog at home in an upcoming article.

Here's to getting the shedding under control!

Street Talk


I like your article... Thanks for info.. my dog sheds like crazy!

  about 9 years ago

Nice tips , the beer one i what i will try :), One more thing we being Vegetarian can i keep my dogs diet too on Veg foods ?

  about 9 years ago
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