Have you noticed that there seems to be more hair around the house lately? Unwanted hair is one of the biggest annoyances that pet owners face. Since nearly all cats and dogs shed, it is important to understand the process and arm yourself with strategies to combat the hairy home.
It may seem odd that your dog or cat would be losing hair as he/she prepares for winter. Rest assured that it is perfectly normal. Fall is the time when pets prepare for winter and part of that preparation is the removal of the shorter, lighter summer coat. This summer coat is shed to make room for a heavy, protective fur for winter. Cats and dogs will shed broken or damaged hair too.
Here are some tips to keep your pet’s skin and hair healthy.
- Grooming: Even the heaviest shedder can be tamed by combing and brushing regularly and often.
- Nutrition: A pet’s coat is a reflection of what they eat. Be sure to feed high quality food with plenty of protein, fats, vitamins, and minerals.
- Supplements: Many people believe that fatty acid supplements help keep your dog’s coat healthy and reduce shedding.
It is important to become familiar with your pet’s normal pattern of shedding. All shedders — even the heaviest — can be tamed by a regular and frequent schedule of combing and brushing. Think of it this way, the fur you catch on a comb won’t end up on your rug. If it does, don’t worry. My friend, Nancy W. of Berwyn, shared some of her tips for keeping a hair free home.
1. Vacuum often. Frequent vacuuming is the best way to keep your home hair free.
2. Cover furniture. Upholstery is a magnet for pet hair, so it is wise to invest in a few furniture throws.
3. Sponges. Use a damp sponge mop on carpet or a damp sponge on upholstery.
Keep in mind that no matter what the breed, shedding is normal. Routine brushing and grooming are an important part of every pet’s care. By paying attention to your pet’s diet and following these tips, you can significantly reduce the amount of pet hair in your home, on your clothes, and on your furniture. For more tips and answers to your specific questions, visit the Harvest Fest at Braxton’s Animal Works this Sunday.