In today’s post, we will focus on an unavoidable aspect that all those who have a pet must deal with: shedding.
What the shedding of our pets is about?
Molting is a natural process that dogs, cats and other animals undergo. It consists of the complete replacement of their hair, adapting to the needs of the animal, ensuring that it is protected in winter and that it does not get hot in summer, so this usually happens in spring and autumn. The molt occurs, therefore, by two main causes: the change in temperature and the number of hours of light per day. Even so, there are other factors that can play a role, such as sterilization. Those sterilized animals tend to lose more hair due to the hormonal changes they undergo.
Depending on the breed of dog or cat, there are variations in the coat. Some shed their hair more than others and some hardly shed. When it comes to hair, most pets have a top coat (visible) and a bottom coat. Moving the upper layer, it is possible to see the lower one, which usually has a smooth texture and, in many cases, it even has another color. This one is responsible for isolating and protecting the skin of the animal. On the other hand, the upper layer is usually formed by a «guard coat» in charge of keeping the skin dry.
We must remember that shelting is not something that occurs in a couple of days. It is something that takes time so you have to be patient. In addition, it is not the same for pets that live inside a house, than for the ones that also go outside. Those that only live inside are likely to molt throughout the year even though they have peaks of greater fall in spring and autumn. This is due to the environment in which they live. In winter they are exposed to house heating and in summer to air conditioning, so it is likely that their body does not know how to detect well when to carry out the shedding process.
Dogs and cats, along with other animals, continuously go through a shedding cycle made up of four phases:
- Growth phase: it is the moment in which the hair grows from the hair follicle (part of the skin that gives hair growth)
- Regression phase: when the hair has stopped growing and reaches its full length
- Rest phase: when the hair dies and begins to weaken
- Molting phase: the moment in which the hair falls out and is replaced by the new hair that is in the growth phase.
Tips to cope better with the molt
We all know what shedding entails… hairs everywhere! That is why here are some tips to better manage this process:
One of the main factors to control the molt is the feeding. A correct diet is the best way to keep your pet’s coat in optimal condition. Recipes that include vitamins of type B, copper and zinc are ideal to achieve this. In addition, at Lenda we have different recipes complemented with fish oil that incorporates high levels of Omega 3 and Omega 6 to promote healthy skin and shiny coat.
For dog food we recommend Lenda Salmon or, if you want a grain-free and hypoallergenic recipe, Lenda Tuna. For cat feeding, our Lenda Adult / Chicken and Salmon recipe is the ideal one.
Bathing your pet
A bath can help to remove the dead hair that is between the mantle, but it is not advisable to abuse them since increasing their frequency during the molt can cause the opposite effect. Pets have a protective layer of their skin and fur, so if we increase the baths we could contribute to weaken the hair and make them lose even more.
Without a doubt, our best ally to control the shedding of your furry. If you brush your pet several times a week or a day you can help control the loss of fur.
The trick is the following: we must start brushing in the direction of the hair, brush against the hair and then finish again by brushing in the direction of the hair. This will help remove all that dead fur that is between the mantle preventing it from ending up all over your house.
It is important to choose the brush well taking into account the type of hair your animal has. If you have short, hard hair, we recommend a rubber mitten. On the other hand, if you have medium or soft hair, it is best to use cards with a rounded tip. If the coat is long you will need a comb to detangle and then a card.
With all this, the only thing left for you is to be patient and understand that… this moment is essential for your furry!