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How to Handle Your Adult Dog’s Shedding
How to Handle Your Adult Dog’s Shedding

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How to Handle Your Adult Dog’s Shedding

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If you own a dog, chances are, you deal with the nuisance of shedding fur. Fortunately, there are some easy ways to help keep your dog's shedding to a manageable level.

If you own a dog, chances are, you deal with the nuisance of shedding fur. Fortunately, there are some easy ways to help keep your dog's shedding to a manageable level.

 

Bred to Shed

The main factor related to how much your dog sheds is which breed you own. Certain breeds, such as Yorkshire Terriers and Poodles, hardly shed at all, and are especially well suited for people who suffer from dander-related allergies. But if one of these hypoallergenic breeds is not your dog of choice, then chances are you deal with some amount of shedding. Here are some practical tips to deal with all of that hair.

 

Bad Hair Days

Many dogs are seasonal shedders. As the temperatures begin to drop, so does the fur. Dogs shed their summer coats in the fall as their winter coats come in. The best way to deal with this is to be prepared. Brush your dog more often and vacuum more frequently. This will keep that extra hair from becoming too unmanageable.

 

Dogs also will go through their own version of spring cleaning. When the temperatures begin to rise in the spring, dogs will begin shedding that extra winter hair. Again, preparation is the key. Regular brushing and vacuuming will help you get through these “hairy” times.

 

Less Shedding Through Nutrition?

Between the millions of strands of hair constantly growing, some breeds of dogs grow up to a total of 100 feet of fur per day! But, while your dog might not boast those kinds of hair-growth numbers, constantly replacing fur still places a demand on a dog’s system. Thirty percent of a dog's protein needs go toward hair growth. If a dog is not receiving proper nutrition, the dog's body will put the protein he's receiving toward maintaining muscle mass, leaving the coat to suffer.

A healthy, shiny coat is not only a sign of proper nutrition, but it also sheds less than an unhealthy coat. Premium dog food like IAMS™ ProActive Health™ provides dogs with the nutrients they need to keep their coat healthy, which means less shedding.

 

High Time for Hygiene

Brushing doesn't have to be a necessary evil. Train your dog to enjoy brushing, offering frequent praise during the process, and maybe even a treat at the end. This is easiest done from the time your dog is a puppy, but older dogs can be taught to enjoy brushing as well. The importance of brushing cannot be overemphasized. Just look at all the hair that ends up in the brush, and realize if it weren’t in the brush, it would be on your couch, floor, and perhaps, bed.

Be sure you're using the right kind of brush for your dog's coat. Breeds with thick undercoats need a specific type of brush, while longhaired breeds need a comb.

Last but not least, make sure to give your dog an occasional bath. Aside from the obvious benefit of having a clean, good-smelling pooch, your dog's coat will also benefit. Be warned though: Bathing your dog too frequently washes away the natural oil on his skin and coat, resulting in dry skin and, you guessed it, more shedding.

 

A Little Extra Time Goes a Long Way

Committing the time to maintaining your dog's coat will help keep his shedding under control. Frequent brushing and vacuuming, and feeding your dog a balanced diet such as IAMS ProActive Health Adult MiniChunks will have you worrying less about an overabundance of hair and more time enjoying your furry friend.

  • Choosing the Right Dog Food
    Choosing the Right Dog Food
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    Choosing the Right Dog Food

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    Author: Dr. Diah Pawitri
     

    When visiting the store, dog owners can get overwhelmed by the array of dog food options available, from dry kibble to canned wet food and more. These processed foods may not be appealing to humans, but they contain all the nutrients that dogs need to stay healthy. Like humans, dogs also need a variety of nutrients from their food, not just from meat as their main diet, but also from grains, vegetables, and fruits. This kind of balance is usually weighed by pet food labels in kibbles or wet food in grams for different types of dogs. 
     

    For optimum health, dogs need food that is tailored and customized to their life stages, starting from when they are puppies and all the way into adulthood. Puppies have completely different nutrient needs compared to adult dogs as they are still in their early stages of life. They need enough nutrients to fuel a speedy growth, especially after transitioning away from their mother's milk. Puppies require complete and balanced nutrition with protein to help build their tissues, fats or healthy skin, hair, brain, and vision, carbohydrates for energy, vitamins, minerals, and water.

    The need for balanced nutrients in puppies starts with the mother during pregnancy, followed by lactation and growth. Sufficient nourishment for the mother is pivotal in enhancing the puppies’ growth inside the womb and preparing them for life after birth. Both mother and puppy should receive well-proportioned antioxidants, DHA, and prebiotics to support their health and growth as provided by the IAMS product line, which contains DHA that is essential for puppies' brain development while also supporting the mother's pregnancy and quality of milk produced. 
     

    While puppies need the primary nutrients for growth, adult dog food has a different level of complexity. Adult dog food requires the same make-up of nutrients as puppies do but tailored to their specific needs. Recent research indicates that an adult dog requires at least 10% of its daily calories from protein and at least 5.5% from fat. Adult dogs need quality protein for firm muscles and a healthy immune system. Additionally, an adult diet can contain up to 50% carbohydrates, with fiber ranging from 2.5 to 4.5%. There is no specific prescribed amount of fibre for adult dog consumption daily, however, it is still one of the most important components in dog food to address constipation and support a healthy weight.
     

    Adult dogs in their prime also require a balance in antioxidants to reduce systemic inflammation and restore active muscles. They should receive Vitamin E and C to support their immune system, joint health, and prevent inflammation. As they grow older, they may be exposed to different diseases from diabetes to cancers, which can be prevented by polyphenols.  Parents to adult dogs must acknowledge the most suitable food for their loved one that is comprised of the right amount of nutrients and can look to the IAMS line as they are formulated to support healthy bones and joint health, scientifically proven for healthy digestion with a good fibre and prebiotic blend, as well as antioxidants for a strong immune system.
     

    Besides life stage, balanced nutrition should be adjusted to their breed, which give insight to different factors like weight, mouth size, and energy level. This will then determine the type of kibble and food given. Smaller breeds tend to be more active, requiring the same essential nutrients and prebiotics for a healthy body as well as smaller-sized kibble designed specifically for their smaller mouths. As smaller dogs relatively have a high metabolism, higher levels of protein, fat, and essential fatty acids like omega 3 and omega 6 are some of the important nutrients that should be available in their food. On the other hand, larger breeds require foods that are lower in fat and calories, contain slightly lower levels of calcium and phosphorus, and have a specific balance of calcium-to-phosphorus ratio to support stronger bones and muscles.  Owners can look to products like the small breed line from IAMS, containing 7 essential nutrients to build strong muscles, support their tiny immune system while protecting their healthy skin and coat, and the product line for adults for large breeds.
     

    Dog parents must acknowledge and understand the unique needs, life stage and characteristics in their dog to choose the right dog food so their furry ones can grow into their healthiest selves. Make sure to visit your vet regularly to check these components as well!