Old English Sheepdogs are giant dogs with long fluffy coats from England, where they originated and were used to drive cattle. They are intelligent, athletic, energetic, versatile, loyal, and affectionate. They have a real sense of humor and are clown-like.
They are very great with children and can flourish in a family environment. However, before welcoming any canine into your home, you must know about their shedding tendencies. It is an important topic, especially for allergy sufferers as it can be a life-threatening situation.
You don’t want to regret ever welcoming your furry friend into your home. So, here is a shedding guide and everything you need to know about the Old English Sheepdogs shedding.
Do Old English Sheepdogs shed? Yes, they do, just like all dogs shed. They are considered moderate to heavy shedders throughout the year. They also have double coats but don’t shed as much during seasonal changes, which is good compared to other double-coated canines. Their long, fluffy hair needs high maintenance to manage their shedding and prevent matting.
While Old English Sheepdogs have long hair, it doesn’t mean you will be collecting clumps of fur every day in your house. When these canines shed, the hairs are trapped in their long outercoat and you’re likely to notice while brushing your pup. Another characteristic of these canines is that they drool so much that the hair around their mouth turns yellowish.
This makes them unsuitable for allergy sufferers because saliva is one of the major causes of dog allergies. That being said, there are ways to minimize their likeliness of causing your allergies to flare up. So, stay with me as I take you through their shedding process, and how you can manage and reduce it.
How Much Do Old English Sheepdogs Shed
Old English Sheepdogs are moderate to heavy shedding canines. One can assume that their long shaggy coats shed heavily, which is false because most hair is trapped in their cost. You can expect a fair amount of hair around your house.
Most of the shedding happens during brushing. The Old English Sheepdog doesn’t shed seasonally, unlike other double-coated dogs who shed profusely in spring and fall. You may also be surprised to learn that they do not shed heavily like other long-haired canine breeds.
Why Do Old English Sheepdogs Shed?
Dogs will always shed unless you have a hairless canine, and the Old English Sheepdog is no different. Shedding is a healthy process in canines, and your Old English Sheepdog will shed to get rid of old hairs and regrow new ones.
Shedding also helps your pup maintain an optimal body temperature in cold and hot weather conditions. Your Old English Sheepdog could also be shedding because of an underlying issue. So, learn to differentiate when your they are shedding healthily and when they are not. That’s part of being a good pet parent.
Shedding Seasons and Frequency
When do Old English Sheepdogs shed? These canines are considered moderate to heavy shedders all year round. They do not experience the blowing of coat season even though they are double-coated canines.
You can expect a fair amount of fur in your home throughout the year. Unlike other double-coated dogs, they won’t shed more in spring and fall.
What appears as normal shedding can be a concern. So, if you notice or believe that your Old English Sheepdog is shedding too much, you should take him to your vet. The vet should be able to determine what is causing your pup to shed unhealthily and offer treatment options.
Look out for symptoms like bald patches, dry and dull coat, irritated skin, excess scratching, constant face rubbing, and foot licking. If you notice any of these signs, your dog’s shedding is unhealthy, and you need to attend to it right away.
So, do Old English Sheepdogs shed unhealthily? Yes, they can, and some of the causes of excessive shedding include:
- Hormonal imbalances for pregnant bitches
- Poor diet
- Parasites like lice and fleas
- Underlying health problem
What Type of Coat Do Old English Sheepdogs Have?
These dogs have a long fluffy coat, which is also very thick and hairy. They are double-coated with two layers of fur. The first layer is a thick, dense, and soft undercoat covering the body and being waterproof. It also acts as an insulator, helping to keep the dog warm or cool as needed. In contrast, the outercoat is shaggy and helps them with their lovable overall appearance.
The Old English Sheepdog’s fur is mostly white mixed with colors like brown, blue, grey, blue, grizzle, or merle. Their hair easily attracts dirt, debris, and dust, which makes them prone to matting and other health problems.
The Old English Sheepdogs have a shaggy coat, which is usually white and helps them blend in with a flock of sheep in the field. This makes them the perfect guard dog for sheep owners.
How to Manage and Reduce Old English Sheepdog Shedding
If you’re wondering whether you can stop your Old English Sheepdog from shedding, I can assure you that it is unfruitful work. All dogs shed, and it is normal. You can never stop your pup from shedding. The earlier you accept that, the better.
However, there are several things you can do to reduce and manage your pup’s shedding significantly. And it mostly constitutes a grooming routine and proper diet. So, let me explain how all that helps reduce and manage shedding.
Old English Sheepdogs Grooming
Grooming is one area you can never ignore when dealing with the shaggy Old English Sheepdogs. They are high-maintenance canine breeds and require hours of grooming to maintain a healthy coat. They have lots of hairs that are long and shaggy, which attracts all kinds of dirt and debris and can intensify allergies and increase shedding.
So, you have to brush your Old English Sheepdog daily to prevent all that, including matting and tangling. Brushing your Old English Sheepdog every day can make a huge difference in your home. It helps remove all the dead loose hairs before they fall in your house. It also helps spread the natural oils evenly over their coat, thus maintaining a healthy one.
This is important because, as I mentioned earlier, dry skin causes excessive shedding. A slicker brush and an undercoat rake are all your Old English Sheepdog needs to maintain healthier fur and reduce shedding.
Another way of grooming your pup and minimizing their shedding is trimming their hairs. The Old English Sheepdogs have long and shaggy coats that need trimming once in a while. You can always take your pup to a professional groomer to do the trimming for you, lest you cut off their undercoat and leave their skin unprotected.
Old English Sheepdogs Diet
Diet is equally essential when it comes to your dog’s fur health. A poor diet will make your Old English Sheepdog shed excessively. So, ensure you feed them a high-quality diet enriched with Omega fatty acids to help promote a healthier coat.
Examples of foods rich in Omega fatty acids include salmon, tuna, and other types of fish. We all know that a healthy canine will only lose fur when necessary. So, visit your vet to recommend the best canine food for your Old English Sheepdog, and always be consistent with feeding him a high-quality diet. This will help to maintain healthy fur and minimize their shedding.
Bathing your Old English Sheepdog can also help to minimize their shedding. Like brushing, bathing also helps to remove the dead, loose hairs before falling. Ensure you use a quality dog shampoo while bathing your pup. However, do not bathe your Old English Sheepdog too often as it can cause dryness of the skin and increase shedding.
Maybe your Old English Sheepdog isn’t getting all the necessary nutrients in their diet, and dietary supplements are what he needs. You can always consult your vet on the best nutritional supplements for your pup and try them in small portions to see his reaction. Supplements like flaxseed, olive oil, and fish oils are always good for maintaining your dog’s fur health.
Are Old English Sheepdogs Hypoallergenic?
When someone asks the question, how much do Old English Sheepdogs shed, they probably want to know whether they are hypoallergenic or not. People tend to link how much a dog sheds to the probability of causing an allergic reaction.
This is because hypoallergenic dogs are characterized by their ability to shed less, drool less, and produce less dander. However, that doesn’t mean they are 100% hypoallergenic because no canine is. It just means they are less likely to cause allergies than other dogs.
Unfortunately, the Old English Sheepdogs don’t claim the title hypoallergenic because they are moderate to heavy shedders and produce a lot of dander. In addition, they drool too much to the extent that the hairs around their mouth turns yellowish. Saliva allergies are the worst, making the Old English Sheepdogs unsuitable for allergy sufferers.
If you already have an Old English Sheepdog in your life and are looking for measures to lower the risk of allergies, there are a few tips to help you with that:
- Do not allow your puppy to sleep with you
- Do not allow him to lick you
- Regularly groom your Old English Sheepdog to minimize shedding
- Brush your dog outside to minimize the dander and allergens in your house since most of the shedding happens during grooming
- Train your puppy to pee in a designated area
- Invest in a high-quality HEPA air filter to remove all the allergens in the air
- Keep your puppy out of carpeted rooms because hairs stick on them, or better yet, change the carpeting with tiles, which is easier to clean
- Visit your doctor and ask for some allergy medication, or you can always buy some over the counter
That being said, if you have severe allergies, I would recommend more allergy friendly breeds such as the Maltese, Poodle, American Hairless Terrier, Affenpinscher, Afghan Hound, Basenji, Bedlington Terrier, and Bichon Frise, to name a few.