Golden retrievers are often loved for their looks and temperament. Well, the looks can easily be the worst when you do not take good care of your pet. It is why some people would be looking for ways on how to improve golden retriever coat.
Coat care is something any pet owner should attempt when looking to keep a pet. The last thing you want is for your pet to look unkempt when it can all be made better.
If you have a golden retriever and you need it looking its best, this is the guide for you. We will discuss several things to keep in mind when it comes to caring for your golden retriever coat.
Understanding the Golden Retriever Coat Stages
Before you can start taking good care of the golden retriever coat, it would be best if you understood the various coat stages of this dog breed.
When born, the golden retriever will have a fluffy and fuzzy hair coats. At this point, the puppies look cute and the coat is easy to maintain without too much work. This type of hair coat is still good for keeping the puppies warm.
The puppies will start to grow the adult hair when they get to around three to four months. These changes start at the tail and gradually move up the body.
When the adult hair kicks in, you will notice that the coat feels coarser than before. You are likely to be feeling the guard hairs each time you touch the coat. The new hairs will progress to point they form the undercoat that thickens over time.
The guard hair is what forms the outer coat of the golden retriever as it grows older. This transition phase from puppy hair to adult hair is likely to take around 18 months.
You will also notice that the guard hairs are slightly darker compared to the undercoat. The undercoat thickness is often affected by the changes in seasons and how often your dog spends its time outdoors.
There are times that golden retrievers also develop long fine hairs at specific locations. These hairs are often referred to as feathers.
Golden Retriever Shedding Season
Golden retrievers are likely to shed through out the year, however, there are some seasons when the shedding gets heavy. The heaviest shedding will be experienced during late spring and late fall.
During spring is when your golden retriever would be blowing out its winter undercoat making itself ready for the warmer months ahead.
The lighter undercoat is maintained for several months which is then replaced in fall in preparation for the cooler temperatures.
When the dog is shedding too much, it could be as a result of a medical condition. Whenever you notice that your pet is shedding a lot and it is out of season, there might be the need to contact your vet.
Some of the conditions that can lead to abnormal shedding include;
- Endocrine disorder
- Bacterial infection
- Fungal infection
- External parasites such as fleas and mites
Shedding is not a bad thing for a dog. However, sometimes you would want to control it better. Here are some tips on handling your pet’s shedding.
- It is best if you invested in a good lint remover for your home and pet. This ensures that you can always clean after the pet leaves its hair all around the house. Another option would be using rubber gloves to easily remove the dog hair.
- As much as you cannot stop the pet from shedding, there are a few things you can do to keep the house free from dog hair. We recommend that you groom the pet more often. Brushing the pet’s coat every few says should help in removing the loose hair before it ends up on your furniture.
- You also have to consider bathing the dog at least once a month. Some might be thinking, why not bath it daily or weekly? Bathing the dog too frequently makes it lose its natural oils. The result is that the pet’s skin ends up drying. This will then lead to more shedding which you do not want.
- Stay away from pills or sprays that claim to stop the pet from shedding. Understand that shedding is part of the pet’s life cycle. All you have to do is manage it. Also, some of such products might be harmful to your pet. Some make it even worse by increasing the shedding activity of your pet.
- Shedding is likely to increase when the pet is stressed or anxious. As such, you should consider keeping the dog comfortable and relaxed. Go ahead and have fun with your pet, this will ensure that the pet is no longer stressed and thus less shedding.
Caring for Golden Retriever’s Coat
Now that you know more about a golden retriever coat, we will look at ways on how to improve golden retriever coat. These are the tips that will help you manage the coat better leaving your golden retriever looking good.
- Brush the coat more often
If you own a dog, then you know that brushing is important. We would recommend that you start brushing the coat when the golden retriever is still a puppy. The sooner you start brushing, the quicker the golden retriever will get used to the process.
Start by using soft bristled brushes for the puppies before gradually moving to a comb as the pet grows older. Take the time to research more about the best brushes for your dog. The last thing you want is to use a brush that might end up harming the pet.
Frequent brushing has many other benefits other than maintaining the pet’s coat. Brushing can help in removal of dead skin cells on the pet’s skin and coat. This process goes a long way to minimizing the amount of dander that is likely to accumulate in your home. There are some people who are likely to be allergic to dog dander.
The brushing process is also good at distributing the natural oils of the dog around the skin. This is important for promoting better skin care of your pet.
Brushing is an ideal method for reducing cases of hairballs in your pet. This is because the regular brushing activity will reduce the amount of hair the pet ingests during self-grooming.
- Keep the coat clean
As part of how to improve golden retriever coat, it is important that you try as much as possible to keep the coat clean.
Golden retrievers have long hair coats. This sometimes can be disadvantageous to the pet. This is because small burs, leaves, and twigs are likely to get lodged into the fur. If they are not removed, then they end up getting tangled into the fur leading to mats. Depending on how bad the tangle is, mats can be hard to remove too.
To prevent mats and knots from forming, look at the golden retriever after every walk. This will help you in cleaning the coat to prevent the mats from occurring.
Before you can bath the dog, try to remove as much burrs and twigs first. Bathing a tangled knot often make it harder to untangle the fur.
So, how often should you bath the dog to keep it clean? It is advisable to bath it once every six to eight weeks. It is enough time to keep the dog from being smelly and still help it maintain its skin oils.
Puppies are likely to be prone to accidents. This means they might need to get more bath times compared to the adult golden retrievers.
If you are going to use a shampoo during bath, only use the recommended dog shampoo. Some people use the wrong product end up causing more harm to the pet.
Other than bathing your dog at home, it could also benefit from taking regular trips to a grooming salon. Here it will get all the coat care it needs to keep looking good for a long time.
- Nutrition is just as important
Nutrition is important too on how to improve golden retriever coat. It is why you need to consider giving your pet complete nutrition.
The best thing about most dog diets is that they would have the right balance of nutrients such as proteins, carbohydrates, fiber, vitamins, minerals, and fat that the pet needs.
If you plan on coming up with a homemade diet, ensure to consult an animal nutritionist or vet. This helps in picking the right food that is good for your pet.
When choosing the best food for your pet, consider investing more in a food type that has Vitamin E and omega 3 and 6 fatty acids. These are important nutrients that will help nourish the skin and coat. They will also leave your pet having a smooth and shiny coat.
Sometimes Omega 3s can be low in quantity when you stick to most diets. As such, it would be best if you opted for supplements to improve the pet’s coat appearance.
From the guide above, you now know what to do on how to improve golden retriever coat. Once you do it correctly, you should have a dog with the best coat. Most of the processes are simple things that you should already be doing to your pet to help it achieve a good look. So, go ahead and be committed to making your pet have a cleaner and healthier coat.