Golden retrievers shed all year but shed more heavily in fall and spring and moderately in summer and winter. But just how much does this golden pooch shed? Compared to more fluffy dogs, the golden retriever is not considered a heavy shedder.
However, as a pet parent, you will have to adapt to your furry companion’s hair on your clothes, carpets, furniture, and everywhere else around your house.
The golden retriever has a glossy, dense outer coat with a thick undercoat. That means more shedding and more grooming. Daily brushing is highly recommended to prevent tangling as well as manage their shedding more effectively.
Grooming your Golden Retriever
Golden retrievers are one of the few canine breeds equipped with a double coat. This dual coat is what gives these beautiful dogs their resilience to different climates and seasons. It also allows them to spend lots of time outside as they need up to two hours of exercise daily.
So what can you do as a pet parent to keep your golden’s shedding under control?
There are some tips and tricks that you can use to minimise and manage shedding. These include:
Committing to a daily brushing schedule allows you to remove dead hair from your golden’s coat before it falls everywhere around your home. It also reduces matts and tangles which keeps your pooch looking their best. If you have a busy schedule and cannot commit to daily brushing, aim for at least thrice a week with once a week being the bare minimum.
Consider using a de-shedding tool such as the Furminator to brush your golden retriever. The de-shedding tool allows you to remove dead hair from your pet’s undercoat while cleaning it. This reduces shedding and prevents the formation of matts and tangles which can cause pain for your pooch during brushing.
If you choose to use a de-shedding tool, do not use it more than twice a week and always use it in the direction of hair growth and avoid scratching the dog’s skin.
Feeding your pooch a healthy, balanced diet will ensure their coat grows strong. Food rich in proteins will keep the golden retriever’s coat healthy and supple and reduce skin-related or allergy-triggered shedding.
Use Organic Anti-shed Shampoo
Use organic, hypoallergenic shampoo to bathe your dog when they are dirty. These shampoos are gentle on your dog’s skin and nourish their hair. Chemical-filled shampoos will often dry out the skin and hair causing increased shedding.
If using regular shampoo does not reduce shedding, consider investing in an anti-shed formula shampoo. Do not wash your dog’s hair more than every 8-12 weeks to avoid stripping its coat of natural oils and trigger more shedding. Adjust the frequency of your golden’s baths if they spend a lot of time outside.
Grooming your Golden Retriever
The golden’s thick double coat means it needs a lot of grooming. In addition to daily brushing, your pooch will also need a bath at least once every 8-12 weeks to keep them smelling fresh and looking clean.
You can groom your golden retriever at home or take them to a professional. However, regular grooming at home will make the work easier when they visit a doggy salon and make the experience less stressful for them.
Grooming at home starts with regularly brushing their coats. A thorough brushing session should take at least 20 minutes. Spend this time raking their undercoat using your de-shedding tools and follow up with a slicker brush to remove excess hair.
If you cannot commit to a daily brushing routine year-round, watch out for shedding season so you can adjust the brushing schedule to accommodate the increased shedding.
Golden retrievers blow their coats in winter and spring to regulate their body temperature. Your pooch will shed their hair to make way for the thick winter coat that will keep them warm and lose the heavy-duty coat as they prepare for their light summer fur to keep them cool.
Are Golden Retrievers Hypoallergenic?
While they are great family pets, golden retrievers are not hypoallergenic. They shed frequently which makes them unsuitable for you if you are an allergy-prone family. However, with a few smart grooming habits, your pooch can become a great new addition to the family.
Hypoallergenic dogs release low amounts of allergens. If you are allergic to dogs, it is caused by a reaction to a protein found in the canine’s saliva, urine and dander, flakes of skin released when the dog sheds.
Fortunately, if you have these allergies you can still get a golden retriever. Contrary to popular belief, even if you are allergic to dogs, it is possible to be allergic to some breeds, but not others.
Here are some grooming tips to ensure your golden retriever is safer for allergic family members.
- Reduce dander by washing your golden with gentle, organic shampoo
- Invest in a good de-shedding tool and brush and brush your dog outdoors
- If you are allergic, wear gloves and a mask while brushing your pet
- Wash your golden retriever regularly, even twice a month to reduce dander
- Treat your retriever to professional grooming services that further minimise shedding
- Ensure the shed undercoat and any long fur is removed promptly to reduce tugging on hair follicles
It is also critical to take note of shedding triggers and avoid them where possible. Some common shedding triggers for golden retrievers include:
- Weather changes: While you cannot change the weather, you can prepare ahead of different seasons by taking your pooch to see a professional groomer. The groomer will help them remove their winter or summer coats to reduce shedding at home.
- Stress and Anxiety: The golden retriever is an affectionate dog that is in tune with your feelings. This breed will pick up on your anxiety or stress causing their hair to fall out. Even significant changes such as moving house can cause your golden to be anxious and shed more.
- Parasites: If you notice increased shedding in your pooch, they may have fleas, ticks or other parasites.
- Allergies: If your canine companion is allergic to anything new in their diet or chemicals in their shampoo, they can shed more than usual.
- Skin infections: Hair loss can also be a sign of skin infections. If you suspect a skin infection or see any signs of infection on your golden’s skin beneath their fur, visit the vet for medical intervention.
The golden retriever sheds year-round and heavily during summer and winter. Their shedding is quite noticeable as they have long, shiny, golden fur. It is therefore important to learn how to manage their shedding at home to reduce allergic reactions and keep your dog looking golden.
Once you are equipped with the right brushes, anti-shed shampoo, and de-shedding tools, managing your dog’s shedding should be a walk in the park. It is also important to feed your pooch a healthy diet with sufficient protein and omega fatty acids.
Overall, once you have mastered the art of reducing and managing their shedding, the golden retriever is worth the hassle. Take advantage of the daily brushing time to bond with your pooch and give them all the extra love they crave.