All dogs shed, there's no getting around that. But some breeds shed more than others. Take the English bulldog, for instance. This popular pup is well known for being a "high shedder." But why do English bulldogs shed so much? In this post, we'll explore the answer to that question and offer some tips on how to minimize shedding and keep your bulldog's coat healthy and looking its best.
The Shedding Cycle
To understand why English bulldogs shed so much, it helps to first understand the shedding cycle. All dogs (and all animals with fur, for that matter) go through a regular shedding cycle. The rate at which they shed varies from breed to breed and individual to individual.
The shedding cycle has three phases: the growth phase, the regression phase, and the resting phase.
The growth phase is when the hair follicle grows and the hair shaft lengthens. This phase can last anywhere from two to eight weeks.
Then comes the regression phase, during which the hair follicle begins to shrink and the hair shaft starts to loosen. This phase lasts about two weeks.
Finally, the resting phase (also called the telogen or shedding phase) is when the hair follicle rests and the old hair falls out to make room for new growth. This phase lasts around 100 days.
Dogs typically shed more during the regression and resting phases as they lose their old hair to make way for the new.
The rate at which a dog sheds also depends on the length of its coat. Dogs with shorter coats shed less than those with longer coats because they have fewer hair follicles.
Why Do English Bulldogs Shed So Much?
Now that we've reviewed the basics of the shedding cycle, let's take a closer look at why English bulldogs shed so much.
There are a few reasons for this. First, English bulldogs have a relatively short coat compared to other breeds. This means they have more hair follicles per square inch than dogs with longer coats. More hair follicles mean more shedding.
In addition, English bulldogs typically shed year-round, with a slight uptick in shedding during the spring and fall. This is due to changes in temperature and daylight hours that trigger the shedding process.
Finally, English bulldogs are prone to a condition called allergies, which can cause them to shed more than usual. Allergies can be caused by anything from pollen and dust to certain foods and chemicals. If your bulldog is allergic to something, you may notice excessive shedding, itching, and irritation.
How to Minimize Shedding
Now that we've explored the reasons behind why English bulldogs shed so much, let's take a look at some tips on how to minimize shedding and keep your pup's coat healthy:
1. Brush your dog regularly. Brushing helps remove loose hair and prevents mats and tangles from forming. It also stimulates the skin, which can help promote new hair growth. How often you need to brush your dog depends on the length of its coat. Those with shorter coats only need to be brushed once or twice a week, while those with longer coats may need to be brushed daily.
2. Give your dog a bath. Bathing not only cleans your dog's fur but also helps loosen and remove dead hair. How often you need to bathe your dog depends on how much it shedding and how dirty its fur gets. A good rule of thumb is to give them a bath every two weeks or so. For in between baths or on the go cleaning, try Squishface Wrinkle Wipes to keep your doggo clean and fresh-smelling.
3. Use a de-shedding tool. De-shedding tools are brushes that have special bristles or blades that help remove loose hair. They can be very effective at reducing shedding, but should only be used once or twice a week to avoid damaging the skin.
4. Add omega-3 fatty acids to your dog's diet. Omega-3 fatty acids are a type of fat that's found in fish oil and certain plant oils. They're known for their anti-inflammatory properties and can help reduce shedding by keeping the skin healthy. You can find omega-3 supplements at most pet stores or online.
5. Talk to your vet about allergies. If you suspect your dog is shedding more than usual due to allergies, talk to your vet. They can help you identify the allergen and recommend a course of treatment, which may include antihistamines, special shampoos, or steroids.
The Bottom Line
By following these tips, you can help reduce shedding and keep your English bulldog's coat healthy and looking its best.