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Hair loss in dogs

Your dog is not only visually different from other dogs in terms of appearance. A very special distinguishing feature is its fur. It can be short, long, silky, rough or even curly. For you as a dog owner, the coat is a very good indicator of the health of your pet.

If your dog is healthy, he has beautiful, shiny coat. Depending on the condition of the coat, more or less care is required here. It is quite normal for your four-legged friend to lose hair in the process.

However, you should watch out for any unusual changes in the coat. It can indicate a health problem in your dog. This also applies to hair loss in your four-legged friend. But when exactly do we talk about hair loss in dogs?

Change of coat: why does my dog ​​lose tufts of fur?

Depending on the type of coat and breed, dogs regularly lose different amounts of hair. He also loses significantly more hair than usual twice a year during his coat change. Because in spring and autumn dogs change their fur. This change of coat takes between six and eight weeks. It can vary greatly in time.

The change of coat in spring is much more demanding. Because your dog is losing its warm winter coat. Here he repels the warm and very dense undercoat. It gives way to its much more airy summer fur.

Your dog can lose its fur in clumps. The top hair also falls out and changes. Regular brushing helps your four-legged friend during the change of coat. This way, the annoying hair is quickly loosened.

Which dogs lose the most hair?

How much hair your dog will lose depends on the breed. And his Fur texture. But also that Age as Hormones play a major role.

Your neutered dog will lose more hair than its non-neutered colleagues. Old dogs hair more than young ones. Some animals react to stress with increased hair loss. And bitches can lose more hair before they come into heat.

Dog breeds that shed heavily are:

  • Newfoundland
  • St. Bernard
  • Bernese Mountain Dogs
  • retriever
  • Sheepdogs

Basically, if your dog has longer top coat and undercoat, he has more hair. In contrast, dogs with short hair and no undercoat lose hardly any hair. These include the poodle and the Maltese.

How Much Hair Loss in Dogs is Normal?

How much fur your dog can shed at a time is difficult to say. It depends on many factors. As a dog owner, you must have a good feeling for how much hair loss is normal for your dog.

Loses your fur nose suddenly a lot more hair, it may be due to a disease. You should then watch your animal closely. Find out the causes of hair loss. And if necessary, ask your vet.

Eczema and itchy skin for hair loss

Hair loss in dogs is not only reflected in increased shedding of hair. It can also lead to severe itching. The skin is usually also affected.

It becomes red, flaky, and eczema can develop. In extreme cases, your dog will lose tufts of fur. And there are bald spots.

Does your fur nose have increased hair loss? Then he often licks those areas of the skin where the fur is thinning. Sometimes he starts to nibble or bite there. You can observe these behaviors especially in the case of disease-related hair loss.

Why is my dog ​​getting bald spots?

One of the most common causes of hair loss in dogs is parasite infestation. Fleas, lice and mites are ectoparasites. You feel very comfortable on your dog's skin and coat.

Parasites take care of severe itching. Dogs then scratch and bite each other to breastfeed it. As a result, he loses more and more hair.

Parasite infestation by fleas, mites, lice and ticks

If dogs lose more hair on their necks and tails, this is very likely to indicate a flea infestation. Fleas are not just annoying parasites that cause immediate itching. They can also trigger allergies.

Mites like to lodge in your dog's ears. They love it warm and humid. Lice and ticks are also responsible for hair loss in dogs.

You can find detailed articles on each of these parasites here:

Circular hair loss due to fungal attack?

Another unpleasant cause of bald spots on your pet's fur is a fungal attack. Fungal diseases are zoonoses. This can become a health problem for you as a dog owner. Because your dog can transfer the fungus to you too.

Fungal skin fungi in dogs are called dermatophytes. They are characterized by circular reddening of the skin. If hair loss is involved, it is also circular. The first spots are mostly shown in the head area of ​​your four-legged friend. And on his forelegs.

Dogs are more prone to get a yeast infection when their immune systems are weakened. Diseases that weaken your pet can therefore also lead to fungal infections. An infestation with ectoparasites can, for example, lead to skin fungus.

Dogs in breeding or animal shelters are at increased risk. Likewise, dogs that take part in exhibitions and competitions.

Hair loss due to stress

You may have noticed that your dog is suddenly losing more hair. Especially in uncomfortable situations. This is the case with many animals, for example during a visit to the vet. Her dog is under stress. This affects its fur.

Stress is a not insignificant cause of hair loss in dogs. Certain situations can put him under such stress that he develops health problems.

The loss of fur in clumps is one of the consequences. Reasons are moving, a new four-legged friend or maybe a baby in the family.

The wrong food is often the cause of hair loss

A classic cause of bald spots in dog's fur are feeding errors. A lack of nutrients can cause dull coats in dogs and lead to hair loss. Your dog needs balanced, species-appropriate and high-quality dog ​​food.

Unfortunately, not every finished feed from the trade meets these criteria. Inferior food, self-cooked food, wrong barf or even the feeding of leftover food can cause serious health problems for your dog. One of them is hair loss.

A food allergy can also be the reason for coat problems in your dog. Dogs react more and more frequently to allergens these days. This is mostly due to cereals containing gluten or types of meat such as chicken or beef.

When does a dog lose hair?

Hair loss often occurs as a result or symptom of other conditions:

  • Hypothyroidism
  • Cushing Syndrome
  • Sebadenitis


Alopecia is the name of hair loss in technical terms. Alopecia can be a sign of your dog's underlying illnesses. This includes the Hypothyroidism.

The lack of thyroid hormones negatively affects the growth of your favorite's hair. Other signs of underactive are fatigue and weight gain.

Cushing Syndrome

Cushing's syndrome can also be responsible for hair loss. This condition leads to an overproduction of Adrenal hormones. In most cases, this is caused by tumors in your dog's pituitary gland or tumors on the adrenal glands.

Other typical symptoms of this disease are excessive drinking of your four-legged friend. And with it increased urination. He also has an increased appetite and thin skin.

Rare diseases

Dogs with black pigmented hair very rarely have hair loss. In this case, he did not fully develop the follicles of the hair. This can already be observed in the first months of your furry friend's life.

Sebadenitis is just as rare. In this disease, inflammation irreversibly destroys the sebum glands. The lack of sebum makes the hair dull and it breaks off.

What can be done about severe hair loss in dogs?

The reasons for increased hair loss in your dog are very diverse. As a dog owner, you can have a number of causes easily find out for yourself and get out of the way. On the other hand, other problems can only be identified and treated by your vet.

Parasite infestation can usually be eliminated quickly with the appropriate means. However, it is better if you take precautionary measures. Appropriate collars for your four-legged friend are available in stores. You will also find spot-on preparations against parasites here.

Both prevent parasites from infecting your dog in the first place. We can especially recommend the “Seresto” collar from Bayer for your fur nose. Or the “Scalibor” dog collar.

Switch to a different dog food

If your dog's hair loss is due to incorrect feeding, you should urgently change your feeding plan. Get help from dog nutrition experts or your vet.

And reach for species-appropriate, high-quality dog ​​food for your dog. Leftover food must be taboo. If you add salmon oil or linseed oil, your dog's coat and skin will recover quickly.

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Here is more information about foods that are good for your skin and coat:

Dog is losing fur: act in good time

If the reason for the hair loss is not clear to you as the owner, you should definitely visit the vet. Only they can diagnose and treat your dog's underlying diseases.

Accurately describe your dog's lifestyle and symptoms. The more likely it is to find the cause of his hair loss.

It is important that you always keep a close eye on your fur nose. Take care of the fur Your four-legged friend regularly according to its nature. Or take him to the groomer.

This enables you to quickly identify problems with your skin and hair. And you can start treatment right away. Your dog will soon have a healthy, thick coat again.

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