Although there is no dog food that has been proved to prevent shedding, there are some special food formulas that may help to reduce it. The season or time of year has the biggest effect on shedding in most dogs. Common allergies and other medical issues can also affect the amount a dog sheds. Aside from a dog’s diet, there are other steps you can take to help guarantee a healthy coat for your dog.
Finding Quality Food
Look for quality foods that offer full, balanced nutritional benefits for the dog. Find dog foods that contain some Omega-3 and -6 oils. These oils can help maintain a healthy coat, though results, if any, may not be noticeable for months. Consider adding supplements like salmon oil to a dog’s diet if foods containing Omega oils are too costly or cannot be found.
Best Place to Purchase Foods
Purchase foods from a trusted veterinarian’s office. Buying foods at convenience stores and markets usually means buying a dog food that lacks the nutritional value a dog needs to achieve and maintain a healthy coat. Pick an established, trusted brand of food with as little “filler” content (usually corn) as possible.
Supplements and Other Medications
Feeding a dog supplements aimed at preventing broken or damaged hair may be required if the shedding problem is not reduced after a few months on a veterinary-recommended diet. Controlling fleas and allergies that cause a dog to scratch is also a vital step. Give or apply these medications as needed, particularly during summer months when fleas and ticks are widespread.
Brush a dog’s coat daily to remove excess dead hair. Use the correct type of brush on your dog’s coat to help ensure the maximum amount of excess hair is removed without damaging or upsetting the dog’s sensitive skin. Try a variety of brushes to determine which works best on the dog’s coat. Most coats require the use of more than one brush to remove all excess loose hair from both the undercoat and overcoat.
Wash using oatmeal-based shampoo that is gentler and does not irritate or dry out skin as much as conventional shampoos. Lather the shampoo and apply to all areas of the skin to remove dirt and hair. Rinse and repeat if necessary, but not too often.
Based in Nashville, Mitch Morgan has been a writer since 2005. His articles have appeared in daily and weekly newspapers, "Nightclub & Bar Magazine" and various websites. Morgan earned a B.A. in print journalism at the University of Mississippi. As the former editor of a weekly arts-and-entertainment guide, he maintains a passion for film and music.