Grooming Tips for Dog Shedding Season

April 3, 2024

A dog laying on the floor in front of a pile of its own fur after being groomed during dog shedding season.

Shedding season can be challenging for dog owners battling a relentless tide of fur. Not only can this lead to more cleaning around the house, but it may also contribute to allergies and discomfort for both you and your pet. Effective grooming during these times is not just about keeping your house clean – it’s also essential for your dog’s skin health and overall well-being.

Understanding Dog Shedding

A woman holding a ball of her dog's fur with the Corgi standing in the background.

Like all mammals, dogs shed their hair as part of a natural cycle of growth and replacement. However, various factors can influence the extent and timing of shedding.


The most significant factor influencing your dog’s shedding pattern is its breed.

Some breeds, like Poodles and Bichon Frisés, are known for their minimal shedding. Other breeds, like Labrador Retrievers and German Shepherds, tend to shed more heavily.

Dogs with double coats (two layers of fur: an undercoat and a top coat) often shed more than those with single coats.


Seasons also play a role in your dog’s shedding patterns.

  • Seasonal shedding: Many breeds experience seasonal shedding, where they shed more during particular times of the year – typically spring and fall. This is a biological response to changes in daylight, helping them prepare for the coming seasons by either shedding their winter coat or growing a thicker one.
  • Year-round shedding: On the other hand, some dogs shed evenly throughout the year. Breeds like the Dalmatian and the Boston Terrier are known for this type of shedding, which is generally less intense but more consistent than seasonal shedding.

A note on double-coated breeds:

A fascinating phenomenon associated with double-coated breeds is the “blow coat.”

This term refers to the period (usually in spring and fall) when dogs with double coats shed their undercoats in large amounts. It’s a completely natural process that helps these breeds adapt to changing weather conditions.


Lastly, your dog’s health can also impact its shedding.

Illnesses, allergies, dietary deficiencies, and stress can trigger excessive shedding. If you notice an unusual amount of hair around your home, it is worth calling your vet.

Dog Grooming Tools and Supplies

A table filled with dog grooming tools from Wilco Farm Store: brush, combs, and scissors.

When choosing the right grooming tools, it’s important to consider your dog’s breed and coat type. Different breeds have different grooming needs, and using the appropriate tools can make the process easier and more effective.

Deshedding Tools

Deshedding tools or undercoat rakes reach into your dog’s topcoat and gently remove loose, dead hair from the undercoat.

These tools are particularly beneficial for double-coated breeds such as Huskies, Golden Retrievers, and German Shepherds.

Safari, Cat Shedding Comb

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Safari, Medium Dual-Sided Dog Shedding Blade

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There are several types of brushes available suited to particular dog coat types.

  • Bristle brushes are ideal for short-haired, smooth-coated dogs that shed frequently, such as Beagles and Pugs.
  • Rubber curry brushes or grooming gloves work well for short-haired breeds that shed regularly, like Dalmatians.
  • Pin brushes are great for dogs with long, silky coats, like Yorkshire Terriers and Maltese.
  • Slicker brushes, with their fine, short wires close together, are perfect for removing mats and tangles from curly-coated dogs like Poodles.

Safari, Long Hair Dog Slicker Brush

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Safari Long Tooth Dog Undercoat Rake

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Safari, Wire Pin Dog Brush With Plastic Handle

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Safari Bristle Dog Brush, Small

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Combs are another essential grooming tool – especially for long-haired breeds like Shih Tzus and Yorkshire Terriers.

  • A comb with wide and narrow teeth can help prevent matting and tangles.
  • Flea combs, which have very fine teeth, can be used to detect and remove fleas.

Step-by-Step Shedding Season Grooming Techniques

A German Shepard laying on the grass getting brushed.

Here is a step-by-step guide to help you navigate through this fur-filled time.

Step 1: Brushing

Brushing is the first and most crucial step in managing your dog’s shedding. It helps remove loose fur and distributes natural oils throughout their coat to promote healthier skin and shine.

  • Always brush in the direction of hair growth.
  • Be gentle to avoid hurting your dog’s skin.

Step 2: Bathing

After brushing, a bath can help loosen more fur, especially for heavy shedders.

  • Use a dog-friendly shampoo that promotes a healthy coat.
  • Make sure to rinse thoroughly to remove all shampoo residue.

Step 3: Drying

Once bath time is over, wrap your dog in a towel and gently pat dry.

  • Avoid rubbing as it can cause tangles.
  • You might want to use a hair dryer on the cool setting for dogs with longer fur. Remember to dry in the direction of hair growth.

Step 4: Post-Bath Brushing

After your dog is completely dry, do another round of brushing to remove hairs loosened during the bath.

This is also a good time to check for skin issues or parasites.

Nutrition and Supplements for Skin and Coat Health

A small white and brown dog eating from a green bowl.

Certain foods rich in essential nutrients can significantly enhance the condition of your pet’s fur and potentially reduce excessive shedding.

Just remember, while nutrition and supplements can help manage shedding, use them in conjunction with regular grooming for optimal results.

To help support a healthy coat, consider the following foods*:

  • Fatty fish: Excellent sources of omega-3 fatty acids known to improve skin health and give your dog’s coat a shiny appearance.
  • Protein: Contribute to strong hair follicles to promote healthier, stronger fur.
  • Vegetables: Provide vitamins and minerals that help nourish the skin and hair.
  • Nuts and seeds: Deliver essential fatty acids and vitamin E to promote healthy skin and reduce hair loss.
  • Whole grains: Provide B vitamins that help replace old hairs with new ones.

*Always review dog-safe food lists and speak with your vet before feeding your dog human food.

At Wilco Farm, we offer a range of high-quality pet food designed to improve coat health and reduce shedding.

Read What Pet Food Do I Pick for more help and information about dog food and nutrition.

Professional Grooming Services

A small dog getting its hair trimmed at the groomer's office.

While regular at-home grooming is important, there are times when professional grooming services can be invaluable.

Thick or long coat: Professional grooming might be worth considering if your dog has a coat that’s difficult to manage or has specific grooming needs related to their breed.

Skin conditions or sensitivities: Dogs with skin conditions or sensitivities may also benefit from the expertise of a professional groomer who can provide a gentle, appropriate grooming regimen.

Peak shedding season: A professional groomer has the tools and skills to effectively manage increased shedding to ensure your dog’s coat remains healthy and your home stays as fur-free as possible.

Professional grooming also offers benefits beyond simply managing shedding.

For instance, at Wilco Grooming, besides brushing, we also give your dog a bath with one of our specialty bathing systems, a haircut, a doggy facial, clean/pluck their ears, trim nails, clean their pads, and express their anal glands.

Plus, our groomers are trained to spot potential health issues, such as skin abnormalities or ear infections, that you might miss at home.

FAQ about Dog Shedding

A small dog sitting next to a pile of white fur combed out during dog shedding season.

How do you groom a dog that is shedding?

Regular brushing is key to managing your dog’s loose fur during shedding season.

Using a de-shedding tool can be particularly effective as it reaches into your dog’s topcoat and gently removes loose hair from the undercoat.

Brushing not only helps reduce the amount of hair shed onto your floors and furniture but also keeps your pet’s coat healthy by distributing natural oils, removing dead hair, and stimulating the skin.

How often should I brush my dog during shedding season?

The frequency of brushing during shedding season depends on your dog’s breed and coat type.

However, a general rule of thumb is to brush your dog daily during peak shedding seasons, which typically occur in spring and fall. This will help to manage the increased shedding and keep your dog’s coat in good condition.

How do I get my dog to stop shedding so much?

While you can’t completely stop a dog from shedding, there are several ways to manage it.

  • Regular grooming can significantly reduce the amount of loose hair.
  • A balanced diet and keeping your dog hydrated can also improve their coat’s health and potentially decrease excessive shedding.

If your dog’s shedding seems excessive or is accompanied by other symptoms, consult a vet to rule out any underlying health issues.

What months do dogs shed the most?

Dogs typically shed the most during spring and fall.

They shed their thick winter coat in the spring to make way for a lighter summer. In the fall, they shed their summer coat to grow a thicker one for winter.

However, the shedding season can vary based on the breed, the climate, and whether your dog spends most of its time indoors or outdoors.

Do indoor dogs shed more?

Indoor dogs do not necessarily shed more than outdoor dogs, but they may shed differently.

While outdoor dogs often experience more pronounced seasonal shedding due to natural light and temperature changes, indoor dogs are exposed to artificial light and controlled indoor temperatures. This can lead to a more consistent, year-round shedding cycle.

How much is too much shedding in a dog?

If you notice a significant increase in your dog’s shedding, it may be cause for concern. Symptoms of excessive shedding include more hair loss than usual, inflamed skin, brittle fur, excessive scratching, or bald patches.

Many factors can contribute to excessive shedding in dogs, including poor diet, using the wrong shampoo, parasites, stress, and underlying health issues. If you’re concerned about your dog’s shedding, it’s always a good idea to consult your veterinarian.

Mastering Shedding Season

A man and a woman carrying their dogs on their shoulders.

Every dog has their own grooming needs and cycles of shedding. A consistent grooming approach is the key to managing your dog’s shedding season – embrace the process and enjoy the cozy companionship of your well-groomed, loving dog!