Why is your Golden Retriever shedding & how to deal with it

Goldens are gorgeous and popular family dogs. But many forget to mention just how much they shed. So a word of warning, you will find their hair everywhere – on your furniture, clothes, and sometimes, even your food.

Loving this breed means you need to accept both the pooch and the shedding.

Owner combs Golden Retriever

Find out how to care for a Golden’s coat and how to deal with the molting.

Why and when Golden Retrievers shed?

Golden Retriever in the autumn park

Golden Retrievers are double-coated canines. They have a waterproof topcoat and a downy, soft undercoat. You may think it’s too much fur, but it helps them regulate their temperature.

They’re moderate shedders all-year-round, but they shed more when the season changes – during spring and fall – to adapt to the changing climate. Their coat gets thinner for the summer, and they grow thicker fur for the winter.

For Golden Retriever puppies, they’ll start to lose their puppy coat and grow into their adult hair at around six months of age.

Is my Golden Retriever shedding too much?

Certain factors can contribute to how much shedding your Golden Retriever is experiencing. Sometimes, these are unavoidable because it’s part and parcel of your Golden’s growth.

But some health issues might be the reason why your Golden Retriever is shedding more than average.

Allergies

Goldens with allergic reactions to food, pollen, or even their shampoo, tend to have loose hair follicles. What encourages scratching is their irritated skin.

Dogs with allergies can also suffer from itchy eyes, ears, paws, armpits, and private parts. They might also be prone to ear and eye infections. If you notice your pet excessively licking her body parts, it can be a sign of hypersensitivity.

Parasites

Fleas, ticks, and mites can cause excessive shedding due to your pup’s increased scratching.

If you notice an infestation, please avoid going to the groomers! You don’t want to spread the parasites to other pets. Use anti-tick and anti-mite shampoos or insecticides.

To keep your home infestation-free, you’ll have to clean the house to remove any stray parasites and eggs. You also want to clean their bedding and any areas they frequently lie on.

Stress

Golden Retriever warms under the blanket

Like humans, stress can cause excessive hair loss in dogs, especially those who are extremely sensitive and have anxiety.

Lifestyle or family changes can aggravate your Golden’s shedding. Even loud noises coming from construction nearby, or a change of scenery or routine can be such a hassle for your fido.

You can avoid stressing your Golden Retriever by giving her a quiet, low-traffic spot to serve as her safe space when she’s feeling overwhelmed. It can be a crate or an unused room that doubles as your pet’s sleeping area.

This is the best solution because if your Goldie is sleeping on her dog bed, then you won’t have to worry about her leaving fur all over the house.

An under-stimulated dog can also be stressed, so she should always have plenty of exercise. You can also give your pooch puzzles or chew toys when you’re not around.

If you still see clumps of hair falling out from your Golden Retriever or collecting in some parts of the house, it might be time you bring her to the vet.

Hormonal changes

Sterilizing your dog will increase shedding due to hormone fluctuation. Expect your newly-fixed Golden Retriever to shed more in the coming months, which is more noticeable in males.

Pregnancy and lactation can increase shedding, as well. If your dog has just had a litter, don’t be alarmed when her coat thins out. You can give her a supplement, but the hair loss should be a normal thing.

Poor coats that shed easily can be because of thyroid problems. They might also develop a “rat trail.” This is when their tails lose their plumes.

Hyperthyroidism can be treated if diagnosed early. Watch out for warning signs, including unexplainable weight gain, cold intolerance, and lethargy.

Medication

Golden Retriever taking vitamins

Is your dog on any form of medication? Some, such as corticosteroids, can increase shedding. If that is the case, speak to your vet and see if you can try a different brand instead.

How to minimize Golden Retriever shedding

All mammals lose their hair, even humans. We can’t stop your pooch from shedding, but there are some things you can do to keep it manageable.

Brushing can do most of the job

Brush your dog daily with a slicker brush! This tool can remove any dead hair that’s trapped in their coat.

The more you brush your Golden Retriever’s gorgeous coat, the less she’ll shed. Not only will it remove dead hair, but you’ll also be removing all the loose fur before it falls on the floor or your furniture.

If daily brushing seems like a chore, it can be done three times a week, at the very least.

Here’s a video on how to properly groom or brush your Golden Retriever using a slicker brush, whether she has a short or long coat:

Bathing helps, but don’t overdo it

Bathe your Golden Retriever once every six to eight weeks. Please don’t wash your pet more often than that unless she gets dirty.

Shampoos are filled with chemicals and can dry out your dog’s coat. That’s why you should always choose high-quality, gentle shampoo.

Bathing can help remove loosened fur through massaging. You will also be washing off any dead fur that’s clinging onto her coat.

A little tip: If you’re bathing him indoors, make sure you use a drain guard. This will help with cleanup and stop your pipes from clogging.

Swimming is also a great way to remove dead hair from your dog’s coat.

When he paddles through the water, the current will wash them right off. Just make sure you rinse the chlorine off once your Goldie gets out of the pool.

Believe it or not, diet has a good and bad effect on their coat

Healthy dogs often have healthy coats. You can avoid specific health issues by picking the right diet for your Golden Retriever.

Avoid fillers in the recipe and make sure their kibble is made from high-quality ingredients, like protein. Omega-3 oil is also great for their coat.

You might need to try out different brands to find one that is suitable for your Golden Retriever.

She should also have access to fresh, clean water at all times. Dehydration leads to dry skin, which can cause itching and hair fall.

Don’t miss: Best dog food for Golden Retrievers

Does shaving a Golden Retriever help with shedding?

No, it would be best if you never shave your Golden Retriever or any double-coated dog. It will damage their fur and can even cause skin problems.

Shaving means removing their protection against elements and their ability to adapt to weather changes. This can increase the risk of heat strokes and sunburn.

Do note that some professionals and owners do not encourage the use of de-shedding tools, like Furminators. They believe it will ruin the Golden’s coat.

As an alternative, they recommend using a pin brush, along with an undercoat rake.

If you prefer de-shedding tools, we advise that you only use it on your Goldie once a week.

It’s razor-sharp and abrasive. It will remove painful mats and prevent tangles, but excessive use can also thin out your fido’s coat and scratch her skin.

Don’t miss: How to groom a Golden Retriever

Regular maintenance includes going to the groomers

It’s recommended that Golden Retrievers are groomed every eight to ten weeks. If you have the basic grooming tools, you can do it at home or bring your pup to a trusted groomer for some pampering.

They usually use a high-powered dryer, which can remove much of their loose fur and effectively reduce shedding for a few weeks.

If you really feel like you’re Golden Retriever needs a trim, watch this video of a professional groomer giving tips on how to do it at home or in the ring:

Fur control when you have a Golden Retriever shedding in the house

While you can’t stop your dog from shedding, there are some steps you can take to minimize it.

Aside from dealing with your dog directly, it’s best to invest in a powerful vacuum for carpeted areas. A wet-tissue sweeper will do for wooden, laminated, or tile flooring. Swiffer is a popular choice on Amazon.

Lint rollers or lint brushes are also a must-have in every household with a shedding pet like the Golden Retriever.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How many times a year does a Golden Retriever shed?

You can expect shedding from Golden Retrievers all-year-round, but they shed more or blow their coats twice a year when the season’s changing – spring and fall.

Since there’s no way to stop your Golden Retriever from shedding so much, your first defense will be brushing her hair daily to keep it from matting and to minimize loose fur.

Do Golden Retrievers shed more than Labradors?

It’s noticeable that Goldens have longer hair than Labs, but they shed the same amount because they both have double coats.

The only difference is that Labrador Retrievers require less grooming because they have shorter fur.

A Golden Retriever shedding is not considered a problem

Golden Retriever 101Shedding is natural for some breeds because, as mentioned earlier, it’s essential for them to be able to adjust to different climates.

In case you’re allergic, or you don’t have the patience and time to care for a double-coated pet, there are other dogs that don’t shed or are considered hypoallergenic, such as the Poodle, Afghan Hound, Basenji, and the Portuguese Water Dog.

Those who prefer a Golden Retriever that’s a bit low maintenance, you might like the Goldendoodle.

Your decision will depend on how much you want a Golden Retriever of your own. If you’re willing to overlook the golden fur you’ll find, it shouldn’t be an issue.

If you’re a Goldie parent, comment any advice or tips on how you manage your Golden Retriever’s shedding.

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