Are you thinking of getting an Australian Shepherd but want to if and how how much they shed? Maybe you have pet allergies and are looking for a breed that doesn’t shed so much. Here’s everything you need to know about Australian Shepherds and shedding.
Do Australian Shepherds Shed? Yes, Australian Shepherds do shed a moderate amount. They’re a double-coated breed with a short, soft undercoat and a coarse topcoat. Double-coated breeds tend to shed more than dogs with single coats, so your Australian Shepherd will leave hair everywhere they go!
Read on to find out why Australian Shepherds shed, how much dog hair will be in and around your home, and what you can do to stop your Australian Shepherd shedding so much.
Never use the advice in this article as a substitute for professional veterinary advice or treatment. I am NOT a Vet, qualified dog trainer or dog behaviourist. This article is based on research, personal opinion and experience of owning dogs over the last 12+ years.
Why Do Australian Shepherds Shed?
Australian Shepherds shed because they’re double-coated. They shed all year round, but it’s more severe twice a year in line with the changing seasons.
Their undercoat thins out in the spring, ready for the warmer weather.
They then lose it again in the autumn, so they can grow a thicker coat to keep them warmer in winter.
How Much Do Australian Shepherds Shed?
Australian Shepherds are considered ‘moderate shedders.’
This means they shed a fair amount of fur all year round but it’s worse twice a year in spring and autumn. This is known as ‘blowing their coat’.
This means they need to be groomed regularly to remove their undercoat to stop it getting trapped under their topcoat.
How Do I Reduce My Australian Shepherd’s Shedding?
Although it’s not possible to stop your Australian Shepherd from shedding, there are some ways you can help to manage it..
Here are some tips that can help you to manage your Australian Shepherd’s shedding:
Brush Your Australian Shepherd Regularly
Brushing is the best way to keep on top of your Australian Shepherd’s shedding.
Use an undercoat rake to remove any loose or dead undercoat from their fur.
Australian Shepherd’s coats are really thick, so you need to make sure that the brush you’re using is getting through their whole coat.
Bathe Your Australian Shepherd
Bathing your Australian Shepherd using good quality, natural shampoos and conditioners can help to keep their coat free from excessive loose hair.
Doing this every 8 weeks should be frequent enough to keep on top of things.
If you bathe them too often, you can remove the natural oils from their coat and skin which can cause their skin to become irritated.
And unfortunately, this can often make them lose more hair – which is what you’re trying to avoid!
Feed Your Australian Shepherd A High-Quality Diet
Feeding your Australian Shepherd the best dog food possible can help to keep their skin and coat in tip-top condition.
As with humans, nutritious food is so important for general health and wellbeing.
If they’re fed low-quality food then it could make their shedding worse. Their hair can become brittle making it fall out more than it normal would.
Consider Giving Your Australian Shepherd A Supplement
There are several natural supplements available to purchase that can help to boost your Australian Shepherd’s skin and coat health.
They usually contain Omega 3 which is known to improve skin and coat quality.
Make Sure Your Australian Shepherds Drinks Enough
If your Australian Shepherd is dehydrated, then this means their skin is likely to be dry too.
Drier skin can make it easier for their coat to fall out so make sure they’re drinking plenty of fresh water each day.
Never Shave Your Australian Shepherds Coat
Double-coated breeds like Australian Shepherds should never have their coats fully shaved.
Although you might think it’ll help to keep them cooler in hot weather, it’s likely to make them hotter.
Having a double coat makes it easier for your Australian Shepherd to regulate their body temperature.
Shaving their coat can also make their shedding worse too so should never be done.
Get Your Australian Shepherd Groomed Professionally
It’s a good idea to get your Australian Shepherd professionally groomed at a salon.
Dog groomers will usually bath, brush and dry them which can help to remove as much hair as possible from them.
Taking your Australian Shepherd to the groomers regularly, as part of their grooming routine, can help to keep on top of the amount of hair they’re shedding.
Use A Blaster Dryer On Your Australian Shepherd
Blaster dryers are high-powered hair dryers that are commonly used by professional groomers.
Luckily, they’re also available for owners to buy on Amazon too.
They can be a great way to remove any dead hair from your Australian Shepherd’s coat.
Because their coats are so thick, it can be difficult and time consuming to remove all of the loose undercoat in one grooming session.
Blaster dryers help to blast out this hair, which can be quicker and more effective than brushing alone.
Why Is My Australian Shepherd Shedding So Much?
If you think that your Australian Shepherd is shedding more excessively than normal, then there’s likely an underlying cause.
Severe shedding can be caused by physical, emotional or medical issues including:
If your Australian Shepherd suffers from allergies from their food or the environment, they may start shedding more.
It’s important you find the cause of their allergies so you can get the right treatment to help them.
Your Vet can even run allergy tests to determine exactly what’s causing their allergies.
Once you find the cause, you can work on eliminating those things from their diet or environment.
Stress And Anxiety
Stress and anxiety can cause your Australian Shepherd to shed more dog hair.
Shedding excessively is a telltale sign that they’re feeling stressed, anxious or uncomfortable.
This might be a temporary thing like, for example, getting stressed over visiting the vet. And then they’ll stop shedding so much once they calm down again.
However, it can become more long term if the cause of their stress doesn’t go away. For example, if you have a new baby at home or you’ve recently moved house and they feel unsettled about this.
Low Quality Diet
Feeding your Australian Shepherd low-quality food and treats can make them shed more dog hair.
If they’re not getting all the nutrients they need to keep their skin and coat healthy, this can then make them lose more hair.
If you have to change your Australian Shepherd’s food, make sure to do it slowly. Then monitor them to see if their new food decreases their shedding levels.
Lack Of Grooming
Not grooming your Australian Shepherd often enough can make them lose more hair around your home.
They should be brushed at least 2–3 times weekly to prevent any tangles or matts from forming and to remove any dead undercoat.
Certain medical conditions can cause patchy or even total hair loss for your Australian Shepherd. These can and should be diagnosed by your vet.
So speak to your vet if you think there could be a medical reason behind your Australian Shepherd’s excessive shedding.
Parasites such as fleas, ticks, lice, mange and ringworm can all cause your Australian Shepherd to lose much more hair than normal.
In severe cases, they can create totally bald patches as well as thickening and soreness of the skin.
Keeping on top of your Australian Shepherd’s flea and worming treatments can help to keep this in check.
It’s common for entire female Australian Shepherds to lose more hair or blow their coat around the time they’re in season, or shortly afterwards.
It’s also common for them to shed more dog hair after they’ve had a litter of puppies.
Both of these increases in hair loss are caused by their fluctuating hormone levels.
There are also some hormone-related medical conditions like Cushings and Hypothyroidism that can cause your Australian Shepherd to lose more hair.
However, these need to be diagnosed and treated by your vet.
Certain medications given to your Australian Shepherd to treat other conditions can cause side effects such as hair loss.
Speak to your vet if you think that your Australian Shepherd has started shedding more hair since they started taking a new medication.
The one they’re on might not be suitable and they may be able to offer you an alternative.
So there you have it! Australian Shepherds are a double-coated dog breed that will shed dog hair around your home. Unfortunately, they’re big dogs so you can’t stop them shedding completely. However, you can keep on top of the shedding by feeding a high quality diet, brushing and grooming them regularly, and vacuuming your home each day.
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