Australian Shepherds were bred to be herding dogs that can withstand cold climates. They sport dense and thick double coats that provide them warmth during the winter season.
Do Australian Shepherds shed a lot like most double-coated breeds? Continue reading to find out how much they shed and learn what you can do to control their shedding.
Are Australian Shepherds Heavy Shedders?
No, Australian Shepherds shed moderately. Although they fall under the average shedding category, don’t rejoice yet since these double-coated dogs shed their fur throughout the year.
The Australian Shepherd also undergoes seasonal shedding in the spring and autumn. Around this time, he will start to shed heavily.
This herding dog is not suited for dog lovers with allergies too. His thick coat can quickly accumulate dander and other allergens. Once he sheds his coat, these can end up all over the house and may trigger nasty allergic reactions.
Do Australian Shepherds Blow Their Coats?
Yes, Australian Shepherds do blow their coats. It’s a process that causes dogs to shed off their old winter coats so that their summer coats can grow.
The Australian Shepherd typically blows his coat during the spring and fall seasons. The breed will shed a lot around this period. However, some Aussies may start shedding more during fall if winter begins early.
What Are Other Reasons Why Aussies Shed So Much?
Shedding season is not the only cause of excessive hair loss in Australian Shepherds. Here are the other factors that lead Aussies to shed inordinate amounts of fur:
Certain health problems are one of the common reasons why Australian Shepherds shed a lot. Allergies, cancer, hypothyroidism, skin infections, and parasite infestations are usually linked to abnormal hair loss in dogs.
It is often accompanied by other symptoms such as lethargy, losing big clumps of hair, loss of appetite, and sudden weight change.
If your Australian Shepherd is losing too much hair, get him checked by the vet to rule out possible medical conditions.
Hormonal Changes in Females
It is not uncommon for newly sexually mature female Australian Shepherds to experience hair loss.
Anxiety and Stress
Excessive shedding can also be a sign that your Aussie is suffering from anxiety or stress. Big changes in his daily routine can trigger this condition.
Some of the triggers could be moving into a new home, adding a new pet, or leaving him alone at home for more hours than necessary.
Australian Shepherds with anxiety or stress will exhibit noticeable behavioural changes such as constant whining or withdrawing from everyone.
How Do I Stop My Australian Shepherd from Shedding?
Unfortunately, there is no way to stop your Australian Shepherd from losing hair. Shedding occurs naturally in all dog breeds.
However, you can control and minimise it by following these tips:
1. Never Skip Grooming Day.
Brushing your dog’s coat 2–3 times a week is a simple yet effective way to reduce his shedding. But when shedding season starts, you will need to brush your Australian Shepherd’s coat every day. It will prevent loose and dead hair from tangling or grouping into large clumps.
During regular grooming, use a pin brush. For shedding season grooming, switch to using deshedding tools. To thoroughly remove dead hair, brush your Aussie using an undercoat rake as it can fully reach down through his dense double coat.
Then untangle your Aussie’s outercoat with a slicker brush. Make sure to comb in the same direction that his hair is growing to avoid the brush from painfully snagging on his fur. A stripping comb is the ideal tool to remove mats that form behind your Australian Shepherd’s ears.
Most Australian Shepherds, including the Miniature Australian Shepherds, are easy to groom since they have medium-length coats. However, Aussies and Mini Aussies that are bred for shows have longer fur compared to pet and working lines. Thus, it may require extra time to completely comb through their coats.
2. Set a Healthy and Balanced Diet for Your Aussie.
Poor nutrition can affect the coat quality of your Australian Shepherd. Lack of protein or fats in his daily meals can lead his fur to become dull, dry, and brittle, resulting in hair loss.
Make sure to choose premium-quality dog food for your Aussie. It should contain adequate amounts of vitamins and minerals that will keep his coat healthy.
Check to see if it is high in omega fatty acids too. The dog food should contain ingredients like salmon, tuna, or flaxseed.
If you are unsure of what brand to pick for your Australian Shepherd, consult the vet. Some pet food companies have specially formulated products designed to improve your dog’s coat.
The vet can determine what type of dog food will help in reducing your Australian Shepherd’s shedding.
Do Australian Shepherds Smell?
No, Australian Shepherds rarely give off a the doggy smell. For this reason, there is no need to bathe them frequently. Bathing can help remove dead hair and control shedding, but if it is done too frequently, it may cause the opposite effect.
Excessive bathing can dry out your Australian Shepherd’s skin and coat. Thus, only bathe him once a month. Use a deshedding shampoo on him, as it commonly contains omega-3 or omega-6 fatty acids that will strengthen his coat and reduce shedding.
Do You Need to Shave Your Australian Shepherd’s coat?
No, it is not advisable to shave or clip your Aussie’s coat. The only exception will be if it is necessary due to health concerns.
Shaving your Australian Shepherd’s hair will do nothing to control his shedding. It can be detrimental as well. His double coat protects him from the harmful UV rays of the sun as well as the cold during winter. His thick coat is also essential in regulating his body temperature.