Why does a dog lose hair in winter?
Seasonal molt occurs in spring and autumn. But why do many dogs molt at the height of winter? Why does wool fall out and become dull in frost? Is it molt? Or is the reason different? We answer these questions in our article.
It is generally accepted that dogs and cats molt twice a year: in autumn and spring. But in reality, there are too many factors that affect pets from their wild ancestors. If wolves, for example, really change their coat in the offseason, then a pet can molt at any time. And sometimes even throughout the year, just molting will not be so pronounced. But is hair loss always a natural molt? Unfortunately not.
Why does a dog lose hair in winter?
The hair of a pet can fall out not only due to molting, but also for many other reasons. Here you need to be very careful. In many cases, hair loss and tarnishing indicates dermatological or internal diseases, and they need to be identified in a timely manner. Therefore, if you notice that the dog has become dull and hair falls out, it is best to contact a veterinarian first. Even if it turns out to be a commonplace molt, consultation will never be superfluous.
In the meantime, we give 7 main reasons why a dog’s hair falls out and dims in the winter.
Lack of vitamins and minerals in the body
Make sure the dog is eating properly. A balanced diet is necessary at any time of the year – especially in winter, when an increased load is created on the pet’s immune system. Remember that the condition of the coat indicates the condition of the dog’s body? This statement is very helpful here.
Improper care products (shampoos, conditioners, sprays, etc.) are the most common cause after an unbalanced diet. Many owners do not give the choice of shampoos and conditioners for dogs due attention, but in vain.
Just imagine: it’s enough to use the wrong product once to provoke dermatological problems and worsen the quality of the coat, make it dull and faded, and sometimes even give it an undesirable shade. To avoid this, purchase only professional products that are suitable for your dog’s coat type, and be sure to use conditioner after shampoo.
Why do dogs lose their hair in winter?
If the dog begins to fall out, it may be a moult. Pets do not always molt in the fall and spring: under the influence of a huge number of factors, the molting period can shift by several months. But it is important to make sure that molting is really a natural change of coat, not a symptom of any problem. If the hair falls out very badly, if damage occurs on the skin, and the dog’s behavior changes, contact a veterinarian immediately.
Subcooling and dry air in the apartment
The quality of the coat may deteriorate due to frost. Not all dogs are adapted to the harsh Russian winter. If malamute against the background of cold weather becomes even more luxurious, then the coat of heat-loving dogs in winter can become scarce. To prevent deterioration of the coat, it is better to reduce the time of walking in frosts, not to let the dog get wet and cold, and if necessary, buy special clothes for the pet.
Another problem that some dogs may suffer from is the extreme temperature and dry air. Imagine: just a dog walked on the street at a temperature of -20, and now she went into the apartment, where the batteries work at full capacity. Such temperature changes and dry air can adversely affect the condition of the skin and coat.
The effects of stress on the body cannot be underestimated. Stress strikes all systems, and, of course, affects the appearance of the pet. If the dog is often nervous or if her body is experiencing increased stress (pregnancy, lactation, recovery from illness, change of food, sudden changes in conditions, etc.), the coat may become dull.
Remember that a dog can become infected with fleas at any time of the year? Winter is no exception. Fleas give the dog great discomfort: it is a constant itching and pain in the bite sites. The condition of the skin is reflected in the coat. It fades and eventually begins to fall out. If the dog begins flea dermatitis, the skin will become inflamed, and the hair will fall out in huge quantities. Be careful.
Internal parasites – helminths – also make the dog’s coat dull and hit other body systems, weakening general immunity.
Dermatitis, food allergies, lichen, scabies – these and many other diseases can cause tarnishing and hair loss. The first symptoms of skin diseases are very similar, so you need to consult a veterinarian for diagnosis. The faster you do this, the easier it will be to cure the dog.
Hormonal malfunctions and diseases of internal organs can also lead to hair loss.