If you are looking into adopting an Australian Shepherd, you might be wondering whether the breed is prone to shedding. It is a common question, because they do have long fur. The time commitment to grooming and cleaning should be known prior to any adoption.
So, if you have been asking yourself “do Australian Shepherds shed?” We are here to help. The answer is not a simple “yes” or “no.” This is not as straightforward as you might think that it is.
Most dog breeds shed to some degree, but the amount that they shed and how often they shed really depends.We have broken down the question into different factors, including how often they shed, why they shed, and what you can do about it.
Knowing what you are getting into before you adopt one will set you up for success and allow you to prepare for what to expect.
Do Australian Shepherds Shed A Lot?
Australian Shepherds shed an “average” amount. This means that they are not the heaviest-shedding dogs, but they also are not the lightest shedding dogs. A lot is a subjective term that will really depend on what you are thinking of a lot.
In fall and in spring, when the dogs shed the most, you will be able to say that your Aussie is shedding a lot. In the other seasons, he will only shed lightly, since he will get to retain the thickness of the coat through the season.
There are plenty of ways to combat the shedding, however, and most dogs shed to some degree. If Australian Shepherd shedding is what is preventing you from adopting your dog, just keep reading.
Once you know the time commitment involved, you will be able to make sure that this is the right breed for you. Most dogs need grooming of some kind, even if they aren’t shedding much.
Aussie Shedding Frequency
Even though they are average shedders, Aussies have a tendency to shed more certain times of year than they do otherwise. They will typically shed heaviest in spring and fall as their coats change for the upcoming seasons.
They have a double coat, so they will have a thicker coat in the colder months and a lighter coat in the hotter months.
Through regular grooming, you will be able to tackle the frequency and make it not seem quite has shocking when the change of coat does happen. So while the dogs do shed all year, the shedding is substantially worse in fall and spring.
Australian Shepherd Shedding Causes
There are many different causes of shedding in dogs. Hair growth is primarily caused by the dog’s hormones.
Hormones are susceptible to the sunlight, which is why in the spring, when the days begin to get longer, dogs will lose their heavy coat in exchange of a nice, light summer coat.
Likewise, in fall, when the days shorten and there is less sunlight, the coat will change again as the coat thickens in preparation of winter.
Another harmless cause of hair loss in dogs is pregnancy. Temporary hair loss is common during pregnancy and you might also notice a change in the coat after the pregnancy. This is also due to hormonal fluctuation.
If your dog seems to be shedding at a surprising rate there are other causes to shedding. There are certain conditions, like allergies and infection, that can cause hair loss in dogs. Bacterial, fungal, and parasitic infections will lead to hair loss as your dog’s body battles the infection.
Some skin diseases or inflammatory diseases will lead to a dog’s fur falling out. This is more than shedding and you should notice a difference in the dog’s coat.
If you have noticed that your dog is scratching a lot and has bald spots, then it would be best to have a vet check over your dog to look for a cause. A protein deficiency can also lead to hair loss, so if the shedding seems like it is more than it should be, there could be another explanation.
How To Manage Your Aussie Shedding
One of the easiest ways to handle shedding is to brush your dog’s coat regularly. Brushing your Aussie thoroughly once or twice a week will help remove the loose hair that will fall out eventually. It also will keep the coat from matting and help remove any debris that might be building up inside of the coat.
Brushing will also help distribute the natural oils of the hair evenly. This will help keep the fur nice and smooth while maintaining its healthy appearance. Be gentle as well, there’s no reason to pull the fur.
When brushing, you will want to consider the type of brush that you are using. Undercoat rakes will go down to the undercoat and help remove the fur there, which is often the biggest culprit in shedding.
You can also have a slicker brush to help smooth out the topcoat to give your dog a shiny and healthy looking coat.
Bathing & Shampoo
Aussies are naturally energetic dogs. They love to run, work, and play. As a result, finding a dirty Aussie is easy to do. Unfortunately, they cannot be bathed too often, even when they are dirty.
If you bathe your dog too often, you will dry out his skin. Bathing removes not just the dirt from the dog’s fur, but it also removes all of the natural oils that are there.
Too much bathing can make the hairy dry and brittle, which will also make it harder to take care of.
When you do bathe your Aussie, you will want to make sure that you are using a high quality dog shampoo. Do not try to use a human shampoo on your dog’s fur, but instead look for a dog shampoo that has healthy ingredients.
Your dog’s coat will also need to be brushed after bathing to remove any loose hair that was stirred up.
Nutrition is incredibly important in all dogs, Aussies included. Nutrition also affects hair growth. You will need to make sure that you are feeding your dog only well-balanced dog food.
That means a food that is rich in vitamins, minerals, and Omega 3 fatty acids. Aussies require more food than other dogs as well, because they are high energy and are always burning calories.
If your dog is not getting the right nutrition, his coat should easily show that he needs more or different dog food. Good nutrition will also prevent any dietary deficits that could cause coat issues.
Supplements are not a straightforward kind of thing. As humans, we will take supplements when we know that our diet is lacking in some way.
The supplements help make up for the missing vitamins and minerals. For a dog, it is not that simple. You do not just want to give your dog supplements, even if you think you know where his diet needs some help.
If a dog gets too much of something, it could cause more than hair problems. You might wind up positioning your dog by giving him too much of something. Instead, talk to your vet about your concerns and go from there.
Australian Shepherd Coats & Coat Blowing
Coat blowing is a phrase that you will see associated with Aussie coats fairly often. It refers to the process that your dog’s fur goes through as its coat changes between the seasons.
It is a completely natural process where both the outer coat and the undercoat lose fur to make way for the new fur that is appropriate for the season.
During coat blowing, your dog will shed more than he will at any other point during the year. It might even seem like an explosion of fur. But, you can tackle it with regular brushing.
Do Australian Shepherd Puppies Shed More Than Adult Dogs
In general, puppies are born with a single coat that is soft and fluffy. This is there to help regulate your pup’s body temperature.
Over time, the puppy will shed this soft coat, which will be replaced by a thicker and stiffer coat. Puppies do not shed at the same rate as adult dogs, because they do not have the same coats of fur yet.
They will lose their coat sometime around the 6 month mark. It happens gradually and you might not even notice that your puppy is shedding much.
What Is The Difference Between Shedding And Fur Loss?
On the outside, shedding and fur loss sound like the same thing. After all, both have to do with your dog losing hair. But the two terms do not mean the same thing.
Shedding is a natural process where the skin releases the old, dead hair from a follicle so that it can be replaced with a new strand.
Fur loss is what happens if there is an underlying condition going on. If your dog is experiencing a health problem, the fur will fall out and there will not be a new strand of hair ready to come in and fill the gap.
Do Spayed & Neutered Australian Shepherds Shed Less
A common question that we have come across is whether spayed and neutered dogs shed more or less than intact dogs. Since shedding is heavily related to the hormonal fluctuations of dogs, it would make sense that whether they have been spayed or neutered will affect their coat.
In fact, dogs that have not been spayed or neutered will have more hormonal fluctuations and therefore more coat blowing than does that have been spayed or neutered have. Spayed and neutered dogs will still experience shedding, but it might be reduced due to the hormonal changes. This is not true for all dogs, however, and you can still expect to groom your pup.
Do Australian Shepherds Smell
If you are wondering whether Aussies smell, the short answer is no. When they are clean and dry, the dog does not have a noticeable bad smell.
Aussies do have a tendency to run through the dirt and mud, however, and might gain a smell from heavy playing. They will also smell when they are wet, like all dogs.
This has to do with the natural oils getting wet, but it can be worsened by how the dog got wet. There is a huge difference in smell between the wet dog fur after a shampoo and a wet dog that has been swimming in a pond.
Australian Shepherd Shedding FAQs
Do Australian Shepherds Shed More Than Border Collies
A common question is do Aussies or border collies shed more? Put simply, border collies shed more than Aussies. This is because their coats are rougher and need more attentive grooming to stay healthy.
They do need to be brushed more often than Aussies do as well, because of the texture of the fur and its tendency to mat. Aussies still need to be brushed regularly, however.
What Time Of The Year Do They Shed The Most
There are two seasons where your Aussie is going to shed more. Your dog is going to experience a coat change in spring, as the days get warmer. The dogs need a lighter coat to handle the harsher temperature.
Meanwhile, your dog will also shed heavily in the fall when his coat will thicken in anticipation of cold weather. Your dog will shed all year, however.
How To Brush Your Australian Shepherd At Home
When you are brushing your Aussie at home, there are a couple of things to think about. The first is that it is a good idea to brush your dog twice a week to keep the shedding at bay and help keep the coat healthy.
You will also want to have an undercoat rake to help with the dead fur in the undercoat as well as a top coat brush to smooth out the fur.
How To Protect Your Furniture From Dog Hair
The first line of defence in protecting your furniture from dog hair is to keep your dog well-groomed. That way, he will not shed as much all over your furniture.
The second thing is to pay attention to what is on your furniture. It is best to go with washable blankets and pillows and use a slip cover over your couch to keep the hair off.
Shedding is a natural part of just about every dog’s kind of life. Some dogs will shed more than others, but it depends on the type of fur that they have and what they naturally experience with the changing of the seasons.
Aussies are average shedders, putting them between the lightest and heaviest shedding dogs out there. That means that the shedding is controllable.
It is important to be prepared to brush your dog regularly. It will be best to keep the shedding down while keeping your dog’s fur healthy. Just know what you are getting into before you commit to adopting an Aussie.