Golden retrievers are known for their beautiful golden fur that truly make golden retrievers stand out from any other dog. This is why it’s always devastating to owners when they find their dogs losing their beautiful hairs.
Fortunately, there are things you can do to help your dog and stop the hair loss.
So, how to stop my golden retriever from losing hair? You can Stop your golden retriever from losing hair by treating the condition that’s causing hair loss and getting them on a good grooming & haircare routine and ensuring they get foods that are rich in fatty acids and completely avoiding products with harmful chemicals.
There is quite a lot more to treating hair loss in golden retrievers and while this short answer is helpful, you still need to know exactly what is causing hair loss and what actual steps to make.
Let’s discover this together, shall we? Keep on reading…
6 Causes of Hair Loss in Golden Retrievers
Here are the 6 most common causes for hair loss in Golden Retrievers:
- Bacterial infections
- Seasonal shedding
- Underlying medical conditions
Let’s quickly discuss each of these and see how they can affect your golden retriever and lead them to lose hair.
Bacteria and yeast are the most common reasons for skin issues in dogs.
They can lead to a skin infection which leads to several symptoms including hair loss, and one of the things that they can contract is ringworm which causes hair loss and will make their skin red and itchy, also, there will be hairless spots.
Symptoms of bacterial and fungal infections in dogs:
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss
- Blood urine
- Skin lesions
- Eye problems
If you noticed any or few of these symptoms, you should take your pooch to the vet.
Ringworms can also cause hair loss in specific spots such as around the eyes, but they are not the only cause for that. You can learn about all the other causes of dogs losing hair around their eyes here and learn about the solutions and remedies.
Even though it does not happen that often in golden retrievers, they can have some bald spots if they were mixed with one of the “hairless” dogs such as the Italian greyhounds, dachshunds, or chihuahuas.
However, this will be apparent from a very young age, so they will not suddenly start losing hair. If they do start losing hair in clumps, click here to find out why.
If it happens as a surprise, it should be because you just didn’t notice it before and think that they may be losing hair, while in fact it’s just their genetics doing the work needed to get them to look how they should look. Again, very different from sudden hair loss.
Just like humans, dogs can develop allergies and one of the most common signs of allergy in dogs is hair loss and itchiness.
It can be an allergy to food, insects, or just when the season changes.
- Hair loss
- Watery eyes
- Skin rash
- Facial pain
- Chest tightness
- Red eyes
- Itchy skin
- Shortness of breath
- Runny nose
- Redness in their skin
If you noticed one or few of these symptoms, you need to contact your vet to check up on your dog and they will do some tests and examinations to understand your dog is allergic to what exactly. You can learn more about golden retrievers allergies in my post on whether golden retrievers are sensitive.
Golden Retrievers are heavy shedders. Very heavy in fact that I like to think of it as your dog changing skin of sorts. While Goldens shed all-year-long, their shedding is at its peak during the changing of the seasons when they completely drop their winter and summer coats to grow their new coats.
Shedding and hair loss are different in one very crucial way; in shedding, the hair will regrow in a month or two, but in hair loss, it will not regrow unless you treat the main cause of the hair loss.
If you are a new dog owner, shedding may look to you as hair loss because of how much hair the dogs shed especially during the changing of the seasons.
You can’t stop your golden retriever’s shedding, but there are ways to control it. You can learn 17 effective and practical ways to manage your golden retriever’s shedding here.
Underlying medical conditions
If the hair loss is not in one spot and it’s all over their body, then the problem probably lies underneath their coat.
So, if your dog has an underlying medical condition, it may appear first in their coat and skin.
It could be a hormonal condition such as hypothyroidism, growth hormone disorders, or the adrenal gland.
They can all cause hair loss, however, hair loss could also indicate much bigger problems such as cancer, liver disease, and kidney disease.
Golden retrievers can also lose hair after being neutered due to a decrease in testosterone. (Find out all the pros and cons of neutering golden retrievers here)
If you suspect that your dog may be suffering from an underlying health problem that is causing the hair loss, then you should have the vet check them out as soon as possible.
There are some parasites that are the main reason for itchy skin and could lead to serious hair loss such as mites, scabies mites, and Demodex mites.
Also, fleas are common too for hair loss, it can make them scratch their hair off.
Some of those mites are extremely contagious.
Is it shedding or is their hair falling out?
Golden retrievers shed all-year-round and they shed twice a year almost all of their coats (blowing their coats) so if it’s just shedding their hair will grow back but if their hair is falling it will not grow back.
If it’s hair loss there will be patchiness, clumps of hair falling out, and bald spots
In this case, you will need to take them to a dermatologist or a primary care physician.
10 Solutions for Hair Loss in Golden Retrievers
Here are 10 solutions to treat hair loss in your golden retriever:
- Apple cider vinegar
- Lemon juice
- omega biotics
- Spina organics all-natural leave-in conditioner
- Nioxin system hair care kits
- Warren London hydrating butter (leave-in)
- Dog dry skin cream and moisturizer
- Olive oil
- Brush them regularly
- Bathe them regularly
Let’s briefly discuss each of these solutions. Remember that these all work to help your golden retriever recover their hair after you have treated any underlying health conditions if there are any.
Apple cider can clean anything on your dog’s skin, it’s a natural antifungal and antibacterial.
It means you can apply it to their irritated skin and you can also add it to their bath to refresh their skin.
Make sure to mix the apple cider vinegar with water with the rations of 1 part cider vinegar to at least 3 parts water. Don’t ever just pour apple cider vinegar on your dog not should you dip a cotton ball in the vinegar and swap on their coats.
Always make sure it’s diluted enough with water that it doesn’t harm their skin.
Just like apple cider, lemon juice can also help fight against the bacteria, and it can be added to their bath, and it will remove anything that is stuck in their coat and kill any mites or parasites that are living in their coat.
It can be great to deal with dry and flaky skin and if your dog is suffering from dandruff both lemon juice and apple cider will be an ideal solution.
A 1:1 mix of lemon juice and baking soda can be made into a paste that you can rub into your golden’s coat in the affected areas. Leave it there for up to 10 minutes before rinsing it thoroughly from your dog’s coat.
Make sure it never gets into your dog’s eyes.
This is an easy solution since they are basically treats for your dog.
Plus your golden retriever will love it since the little chewy treats are bacon-flavored, and you can take them with you wherever you go; vacation, the park, or even when you go for a walk.
What makes me like this product, in particular, is not just that all the ingredients are natural, but that it seems to actually work and stop my dog itching for a while.
The lasting effect maybe because of the essential oils extracts in there or it may be that the ingredients are really this good of a quality, but in the end, I like it because it just works and doesn’t seem to have any side effects on my pooches.
Some of the best professional dog groomers I’ve known have used this product, and this is very high praise. I’ve also tested it out a few times and It has never disappointed me. I
t’s really great and gentle on your dog’s skin, and it cleans their fur nicely, conditions and moisturizes their skin, and leaves them smelling very nice.
Check out Nioxin system hair care kits on Amazon here.
It’s a non-oily leave-in conditioner, it hydrates, de-matts, conditions, and moisturizes their skin.
It’s great for itchiness and dandruff, and it’s perfect for their sensitive skin.
You can check the Warren London Hydrating butter for dogs on Amazon here.
Some vets recommend this product for its instant soothing, it will soothe your golden retriever’s damaged skin, treats itchiness, and is perfect for dogs that are suffering from an allergy. It will calm the skin without using any harsh methods.
It contains vitamin E and emu oil to promote hair growth, the Emu oil accelerates their hair growth and it will provide relief for dry skin.
Olive oil is perfect in every way, we already know that is really good for us but it can be really useful for your golden retriever too.
It can help to soften their hair and can treat dry and flaky skin, and if your golden retriever has hairless patches, applying olive oil to those patches will help the hair to grow and will moisturize their skin.
One bonus benefit, if your dog is suffering from mites, the olive oil will smother them, all you need to do is massage the olive oil on your dog’s skin.
Brush them regularly
I know that it’s something you already know and you don’t need anyone to tell you that, but this tells you how important this is, brushing them regularly really does wonders, you can start by brushing them once a month and move it up to once every week till you slowly reach brushing them every day.
If you are looking for the right tools, check out my recommended brushes for golden retrievers here. These are the ones I use for my own dogs and have been using for years.
Bathe them regularly
Bathing them is just as important as brushing them, by bathing them you can get rid of anything that is stuck on their coat or anything that is just living and laying there.
Make sure to use a good shampoo that is good for their coat’s condition and age.
How much does it take for a golden retriever’s coat to grow back?
It takes between three months to a year for a golden retriever coat to grow back due to the nature of their coat, however, if they are taking any medication it can make their coat take a longer time to grow back, but there are some things you can do to help your dog’s coat to grow faster.
Why is my 5-months old golden retriever not growing hair on their tails?
It takes some time for a golden retriever’s feathers to appear on their tail, it could appear when they are 1-3 years old or even seven years old, but if their tail is completely bald, you should take them to a vet because it could indicate some skin conditions.
Do female golden retrievers shed more than males?
How much does a dog shed does not depend on their sex, it depends on their medical health and how well you care for their coats. If you take care of their coat, groom them regularly, bathe them, and feed them a proper diet they will shed less, regardless of their sex.
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