Tips for Dealing with Heavy Pet Moulting
All pets shed hair – it is a completely natural and healthy bodily function. Even hairless and non-shedding dog breeds moult to a certain extent. Undoubtedly though, moulting can be a nuisance. Excessive shedding can effect allergy sufferers greatly, and shed hairs can stick to clothes and furniture, making them difficult to clean.
Most dogs go through a large moult in spring and autumn due to seasonal changes in temperature. We are now very much in the early stages of spring, and with temperatures steadily on the rise, many pet owners will be starting to experience seasonal moulting, as dogs start to shed their thick winter coats. While you may not be able to stop this heavy seasonal moult entirely, there are a number of useful tips and techniques to help reduce and abate mass shedding.
Simply put, regular brushing is absolutely essential when dealing with heavy pet moulting. To control shedding, you will need to brush your dog on a weekly, if not daily basis during moulting season. Regular brushing reduces falling hair – the more hair you remove with a brush the less hair you will see around the house.
A slicker brush is the best tool to initially invest in. These brushes collect and remove loose hair very effectively, and are available in various types to suit your dog’s needs, including a Triangular Slicker for use under armpits, or a Long Pinned Slicker ideal for very thick coats.
If your dog is going through a particularly heavy moult, or is of a double-coated breed, you may find it helpful to invest in an Undercoat Rake, or a shedding blade such as the Moult Master. These tools pull loose undercoat hair away from the skin and off the coat in one quick, simple and pain-free motion. Using shedding blades and/or undercoat rakes regularly will significantly reduce mass moulted hair.
When using these products, always brush your dog outside, so loose hair can simply blow away. When you have finished, collect any large clumps or fur-balls that remain and put them in a sealable plastic bag before throwing the hair away. This stops shed hair from returning every time you open your bin.
Other Things to Consider
While brushing is the simplest and most effective way to control pet moulting, there are a number of additional methods you can employ to help with the process.
- Bathe your dog with a gentle shampoo. It is important to use a mild shampoo designed for dogs, otherwise the coat can become damaged and brittle.
- Use a bath brush when bathing your dog. Bath brushes massage deep into the coat, encouraging hair to come free more readily.
- Consider including fatty acids in your dog’s diet. A healthy diet in general will benefit coat health, but fatty acids in particular enhance and nourish dog coats very effectively.
Remember to use a Sink Strainer to collect hair when bathing heavily moulting dogs.
Brushing will also dramatically help with feline moulting. Regular brushing will reduce loose, falling hair, will remove any uncomfortable matts (particularly beneficial for outdoor cats), and help reduce fur-balls. Grooming your cat regularly is also an ideal bonding experience for the both of you.
It is important to invest in tools specifically designed for cats. Cat slicker brushes and moulting combs are smaller, and better suited to feline skin and hair.