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Man Brushing Dog With Wire Comb Dog Brush

Most dog’s coats get thicker and fuller in the winter months to help keep them warm, but come springtime when the weather begins to warm up the dog’s coat begins to thin itself out. This process will cause the dog to begin shedding his coat. Some dogs shed excessively leaving hair behind where ever the dog has been. Bathing and grooming help with the shedding but regular brushing will help even more and your dog will enjoy this as well. There are many different brush types and knowing what brush works for what type dog will help you choose the proper one.

Soft Bristle Brushes For Short Coated Dogs

Brushes with soft bristles work well for dogs with short coats. The brush will not cause damage to the dog’s skin. It also works well to keep the coat healthier and shinier by spreading natural oils that are in animal’s skin.  If the dog has excessive shedding issues, the FURminator is highly recommended for use 2-4 times a month to keep dog shedding under control.

Slicker Brushes For Long Soft Coated Dogs

The most common dog brush is called a Slicker Brush. This brush usually has a handle made out of wood with a rectangular flat back. The bristles at the top of the brush are bent slightly. These type brushes can be used for all dogs. It can be a good choice for a dog with long, soft coats for helping to keep the hair shiny, soft and straight. It also can be used on dogs coats to remove tangles and shedding hair which makes it a good choice for dogs with curly coats.

Pin Brushes For Thin, Wiry Or Coarse Coated Dogs

For dogs that tend to get mats in their coats a pin brush works well. These brushes have bristles that look like wire pins. This brush is designed to get to the undercoat where the matting occurs and also removes shedding hair. This brush should be used with care as to not brush the skin, as that can cause pain to the dog. Buying one of these that have coated pins will help prevent this. These brushes also work well for dogs with thin coats. Thin coated dogs do not have an undercoat which makes their hair more delicate than other types of dogs. Pin brushes with tighter pins also work well for dogs with wiry coats. Regular brushing with these type brushes help to prevent matting. A pin brush is also recommended for dogs with coarse outer coats to remove shedding hair.

Firm Bristle Brush For Short Smooth Coated Dogs

A firm bristle brush works well for dogs with short smooth coats. Using this type of brush twice weekly will remove shedding hair and help keep shedding under control.

Whether you have a short haired dog or a long haired dog, choosing the right brush will help to remove shedding hair and make you and your dog’s life easier and happier.

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Why Dogs Shed In The Winter

People are often fascinated by their pets and the ways that their bodies work. One thing that pet owners often want to know is why dogs shed in winter. In order to understand the reasons that dogs shed, one must also understand a dog’s coat.

The coat of a dog consists of two layers. These are the longer outer layer, or overcoat, and the dense, insulating inner layer, or undercoat. All of a dog’s hair goes through three cycles, although not all the hair will be in the same cycle. The hair grows during the anagen phase, goes through a transition period during the catagen phase, and rests and dies during the telogen phase. The hairs that die during the telogen phase fall off, which is known as shedding. A dog’s hair will not all be in the same phase at the same time, but there are certain times of year in which the telogen phase is dominant, which causes more shedding to occur. These cycles are largely influenced by the amount of daylight in a given period.

The amount of daylight changes seasonally with more daytime during the summer and more darkness during the winter. The spring and fall are known as the equinoxes because during this transition period the day and night are nearly equal. The gradual decrease in sunlight during the fall causes a great deal of shedding to occur. It may seem like this shedding would be counterproductive and make the dog cold, but this is only the beginning of this cycle. The dog sheds its lighter summer coat in order to make room for a thicker, longer winter coat. This coat will then be shed during the spring to make room for the summer coat once again. These major coat changes during the spring and fall allow the dog to keep warmer during the winter months when it needs the most protection, while still being able to keep cool during the summer.

As you can see, the reason why dogs shed in the winter is that they need to make room for a warmer winter coat. This allows them to better regulate their body temperatures and protect themselves from the weather. Exposure to a lot of artificial light may make dogs shed more throughout the year, but the most active shedding seasons should still begin in the spring and fall.

The best solution for pet owners to maintain the coat of a dog who sheds excessively is to brush consistently.  While a normal brush will work fine, brushes designed specifically to control shedding such as the FURminator are highly recommended for anyone with a serious hair problem in their home.  A couple other recommended options would be shampoo for dog shedding, and deshedding food supplements.

Sources:
http://www.veterinarypartner.com/Content.plx?P=A&A=307&S=1
http://www.peteducation.com/article.cfm?c=2+2083&aid=357

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