What exactly is "blowing coat"?

What exactly is the process of "blowing coat", and what does it have to do with my dog? Be forewarned, grooming can be very challenging during this time. Best described, this is when dogs shed their undercoats in one fell swoop.

This is a very intense shedding period - the undercoat comes out in large tufts. Another way to think about it: as a large "fur explosion".

Some people refer to this period of time as molting, too. You will often hear this entire process referred to as "blowing coat". It can also be subject to climactic or hormonal conditions as well.

One good indication that the coat is about to "blow" is when small clumps of hair will begin to fall out all at once.

Basically, this means that the dogs entire undercoat will come our in clumps, generally about twice a year, lasting about two weeks in length. The amount of dog hair shed in a few weeks is truly staggering. It can easily fill several large garbage bags, depending on the breed of dog that you have very quickly.

What is the best solution to overcome "blowing coat"?

Brushing your dog during this time is critical. You must brush, brush, brush! And then brush some more. To say that you'll be vacuuming and brushing is an understatement.

Best advice: take your dog outside and brush all that loose hair out of your dog's coat as often as you possibly can during this period. Several times a day is my best recommendation to you.

It is very important to do this for your dogs health as well as for basic housekeeping reasons. If you allow dead hair to get all caught up in the coat it will get matted and will eventually irritate the skin causing even more problems.

Did you know that hair mats can be a great hideout for fleas, mites, ticks or other annoying little critters? This makes this even more important that you groom the dog frequently. In addition to the occasional blown coat, many breeds shed somewhat all year long. During this time of year you'll find yourself vacuuming a lot! Believe me, even with all the grooming that you'll be doing outside.

If you insist on a very clean house and do not like dog hair on your clothes and furniture, you might want to reconsider before bringing a dog into your home in the first place.

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Remember, you not only own the dog, but all their coat as well.

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Properly trained, a man can be a dog's best friend."-- Corey Ford