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Do Golden Retrievers Shed

Published: 20 Apr 2024
Kathy R. Conner
Kathy R. Conner
Kathy is a licensed veterinary surgeon and writer in Miami. With over 20 years of experience in deal with pets and small animal, she hopes to share her knowledge on what she learned throughout her life to all animal lover. On her free time, she likes to attend Yoga and Meditation classes.
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Our articles are meticulously composed and vetted by veterinary professionals, guaranteeing precision and pertinence by consulting credible sources, chiefly scientific journals and veterinary manuals. Prior to publication and major revisions, we thoroughly validate the factual correctness, providing well-researched content rooted in veterinary science.

Golden Retrievers occupy a cherished spot among dog enthusiasts globally. Their loyalty, friendliness, sociability, and intelligence make them highly sought after as family pets, working dogs, or service animals. The hallmark of this breed is its rich, long double coat of golden fur. 

If you’ve ever wondered “how much do Golder Retrievers shed?”, then we have the answers you are looking for. The short answer is yes. And there’s nothing you can do to completely stop Golden Retriever shedding. 

However, there are a few essential tips in this post that will help you get control of that dog hair before it spreads all over your house–on your bed, on your clothes, on your furniture–everywhere.

How Much Do Golden Retrievers Shed?

Do Golden Retrievers shed a lot? They certainly do! Golden Retrievers shed dog hair moderately throughout the year. And by moderately, it means you’ll find some of their short, loose hairs straying across your carpets, furniture, and probably your clothes.

During the spring and fall seasons, Golden Retriever shedding builds up twice a year. You should expect bags of dog hair to break out from your Golden at this time as it blows its dog coat, ready to grow in completely new ones for winter and summer, respectively. 

It is impossible to describe precisely how much these beautiful dogs shed as it varies so greatly between individual breeds, but suffice to say you’ll need to brush your dog and vacuum your house regularly if you want to keep on top of it.

And if your wondering, do Golden Retrievers shed more than Labs? The answer is no. Golden Retrievers don’t shed more than Labs. In fact, they shed a bit less than Labradors, which are known as heavy-shedding breeds year-round. So if you’re considering a lower shedder, then Goldens are for you.

How Much Does A Retriever Shed a Year

What Can Cause A Golden Retriever to Shed More Than Normal?

Now that you know the answer to the ‘do golden retriever shed’ question. Let’s discover some causes of Golden Retriever shedding. But before that let’s have a quick crash course.

Golden Retrievers are part of the list of dog breeds that have a double coat, composed of an oily waterproof outer coat and a thick, downy undercoat. This incredible duality is what makes this breed so resilient to various weather types and able to spend plenty of time in the water and outdoors.

However, it’s a double-coated sword as a fluffy undercoat sheds dog hair frequently to let new dog fur grow in. During the cold winter months, the undercoat adapts to the temperature and the weather needs of your dog. And before shedding much of it during the spring, they will grow an extra thick undercoat.

This is why the Golden Retriever shedding is very heavy during spring and fall. In spring, your dog is eliminating its thick winter coat, and in fall scrapping its lighter summer coat to make way for the cold winter coat growth.

As a general rule, the hotter the area, the more Golden Retrievers will shed as they need less fur to stay warm. Moreover, it’s also worth noting that when Golden pups reach the age of 6 months, they will shed their thick, downy puppy coat entirely, to make way for their adult coat. So during this time, expect a “once in a lifetime” shedding episode of your dog. Other reasons are explained below.

Bad Diet

“You are what you eat”, is an old saying that still rings true for humans, and also for your Golden Retriever. If you’re feeding him a poor diet, one that is not balanced or nutritious, it will reveal his fur and skin. Your dog will have itchy and dry skin, increased stress, and damaged dog hair.

Allergies

If your dog has allergies, its skin will be itchy and irritated. Your dog will itch and all that scratching will loosen the hair follicles, and the hair will fall out easily and quickly, increasing the shedding.

Allergies can be caused by certain foods (beef, chicken, eggs, etc.), can be environmental (pollen, grass), or by cleaning products, laundry detergents, shampoo, and even plastic. If you suspect an allergy, the best way to do is to consult your vet. Your vet will provide a means to diagnose which triggers his allergies and manage it.

A Healthy Coat Can Reduce Shedding

Stress

When your dog is stressed, he can shed more and lose more hair. The same way humans lose hair when they are anxious or stressed. The cause of stress in your dog could be from moving, a new puppy or baby in the family, death in the family, or being home alone for long periods of time.

Fleas

If your dog has ticks, fleas, or other parasites on him, your dog will scratch more from irritation. All the scratching will loosen the hair, damage your dog’s skin, and cause more shedding. 

Thus, make sure that your Golden Retriever is up to date with tick and flea prevention treatment, and think about investing in some anti-parasite shampoos and cleaning sprays [1].

Hormones

Thyroid hormones help to stimulate hair follicles promoting the growth of the hair. If your dog suffers from low thyroid levels or hypothyroidism, then the hair will become brittle, thin, and fall out. The imbalances of hormones like estrogen, testosterone, and progesterone can also cause excessive shedding.

If your dog has recently been neutered or spayed, then shedding will increase. After your dog has been fixed, excessive shedding can occur for several months, and happens more in neutered males, because of the changes in the levels of their testosterone and other hormones responsible for keeping the hair follicles shiny and strong.

What You Can Do About Your Golden Shedding

How You Can Lessen Your Dog’s Shedding

Besides knowing the answer to the question, does a golden retriever shed? And the causes of shedding of a Golden retriever hair. Let’s also learn a few tips on how you can control this issue. Some of these tips include:

Provide Fresh Clean Water

Always provide fresh clean water for your Golden Retriever to drink. Keeping him hydrated will help to prevent a Golden Retriever shedding excessively. Dehydration can cause a dog’s dry skin, which can cause irritation and itching, resulting in the loosening of the fur, and shedding more.

Brush Regularly

Brush your dog’s coat regularly. It is recommended to give your Golden Retriever daily brushing. 10-15 minutes brushing a day is all it needs to give your dog a good brushing. At least aim for two good brushings per week.

However, other pet parents do it at least three times per week. But ideally, it should be done every day. This will help promote a healthy coat as brushing stimulates blood flow to the hair follicles. To avoid excess and loose hair in the house, you could also do his brushing outside.

A high-quality pin brush or slicker brush is recommended for this case. To be more specific, the best brush for a Golden Retriever is either a slicker brush or a pin brush for the outer coat. And as for the undercoat, you could use an undercoat rake.

You could also opt for a de-shedding tool, which works fine on most dogs, but some find that these irritate their sensitive skin and cut their coat.

Give Your Dog Regular Baths

Bathing your Golden Retriever will help remove and loosen the dead hair, and prevent extra shedding. Bathing him occasionally, for instance, once per month or every other month is a good idea. 

This helps eliminate that “doggy odor”, keep his coat in good condition, and can loosen the dead coat fur prior to his brushing session. However, it’s also vital to let his coat dry before brushing. 

If you’re in a hurry, the best way to go about is to bathe your dog, then use a blower to not only dry the coat but also blow the loose hair out from the coat as you brush.

Another thing to bear in mind when it comes to bathing your Golden is to only use a good quality dog shampoo. A good oatmeal shampoo, for example, helps moisturize and soothe your dog’s skin. 

Avoid human shampoo and cheap shampoos because these can cause irritation and dryness, which just isn’t good for your dog and can only worsen his shedding. The same can be true for overbathing. 

Bathing your Golden Retriever constantly can dry out the skin, and is simply not necessary, so this is something to take note of.

Use Natural Products

Only use unscented laundry detergents and natural cleaning products around your house. Scented products and certain chemicals can cause an allergic reaction in your dog, causing irritation and itching which can lead to excessive shedding. Keep your dog’s bedding clean by using unscented and natural laundry detergents.

Proper Nutrition and Diet

Make sure to feed your Golden Retriever a healthy, nutritious, and well-balanced diet as this can make a real difference when it comes to his shedding. 

While there are tons of great dog foods out there available, the general thing to look for in dog food is the one that has a good amount of protein and contains lots of vitamins and minerals. 

When it comes to shedding, however, you need to make sure that the dog food you choose has a healthy amount of Omega 6 and Omega 3 fatty acids in it. These are not only good for your Golden but can also help the dog’s coat moisturized and promote healthy skin–which in turn can lessen excessive shedding.

If you’re considering a natural home shedding remedy, try adding a small quantity of quality virgin coconut oil to your dog’s meal at night. This can make a difference, it’s cost-effective and natural. Just don’t overdo it, a slight dose is all you need.

Invest in Fur Cleaning Equipment for Your Home

You will need a good vacuum when you own a Golden Retriever. Do a nice vacuuming of your home once a week, and every couple of days, touch up any area where you spot a dog’s hair. You will want to have some lint rollers on hand too, stash one in your car and in your purse.

Retrievers Can Shed A Lot of Fur

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I shave my Golden Retriever?

No, you can’t shave your Golden Retriever. It is not a good idea to shave a Golden Retriever. Their undercoat protects them from hot and cold weather along with sunburn. It may save you a little effort, but your dog needs his coat. 

Are Golden Retrievers hypoallergenic?

No, Golden Retrievers are not hypoallergenic since they produce dander and they shed fur. In reality, no breed is truly hypoallergenic. However, lower shedding breeds like Italian Greyhound, for instance, are commonly better for those owners with pet allergies. 

When does a Golden Retriever shed the most?

Like most breeds with a double coat, the Golden Retriever sheds the most during seasons like spring and fall. During these times, you should expect heavier shedding, especially in spring.

Conclusion

Anyone who wants to own a Golden Retriever will surely be pleased by their confidence, obedience, and high level of intelligence. So their shedding should not discourage you from having one, that is unless you have pet allergies.

But by brushing and bathing your Golden regularly, feeding them a proper diet, eliminating stress in your dog’s life, and controlling allergies, you can get control over the amount of shedding.

When you own a Golden Retriever, not only will you have a loyal, friendly, and intelligent dog but you will also be showered with affection and love. As soon as you realized that his shedding is really not that bad, you’ll get used to it.

By following the tips enumerated above, your home will have fewer clumps of hair and your golden will be happier.

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