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Dog Hair: Does it Grow Back?

By Aviram K.
September 21, 2021
4 min read
Dog Hair: Does it Grow Back?
🏥 The information in this article is not a substitute for professional help.

It’s sweltering hot, and you look at your dog’s long coat - a thought may come to mind.

You quickly shave your pup down only to find that you shouldn’t quit your day job and become a dog groomer… Will your dog’s hair grow back? I’m sure you’ll be thrilled by the answer!

Dog hair grows back after shaving, whether it’s a complete shave down or just an IV shave on the leg. Dog fur can take between two and three months to grow back. Single-coated dogs grow back quickly, but double-coated dogs will have their fur damaged from shaving.

In this article, I will tackle the subject of your dog’s fluffy self - and how it will grow back!

Let’s start.

Can Dogs Regrow Hair?

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Much like us humans, dogs can regrow fur - but keep in mind that some breeds will never have their coats grow back the same way (more on this later). Dogs regrow hair in a similar fashion to us with our hair, though it may take some patience on your end, depending on their coat.

Only in very specific medical conditions will the hair not grow back. One such condition is known as alopecia. This condition can be congenital (the dog was born with it or predisposed to develop it based on family history) or environmental (severe allergy to something or exposure to a harmful chemical). Alopecia destroys or damages the hair shaft and follicle, in many cases causing permanent fur loss.

Unless your dog has an autoimmune disorder or alopecia that stifles growth, your pup will regrow their coat!

How Long Does It Take for Dogs to Regrow Hair?

On average, it can take anywhere from eight weeks to twelve weeks for your dog’s hair to grow back.

Generally, the growth cycle in totality is about 130 days, which includes growth and shedding. But, of course, it isn’t possible to provide an exact estimate as hair regrowth depends on various factors.

Hair (and fur) on dogs grow in four distinct cycles:

  • Anagen -This first step of the cycle describes the actual growing process. Cells begin to divide to create the hair or fur strand. Once the new strand is formed, it pushes out of the skin (sometimes pushing away another hair that is in the shedding phase already).
  • Catagen - The second step is known as a transitional phase. This is where the hair stops growing, and the outer root sheath gets smaller and attaches itself to the root of the hair. This phase lasts about two to three weeks.
  • Telogen - The third phase is known as the resting phase. This is the fur that you see on your dog staying firmly in their skin. The hair follicle is entirely at rest for about 100 days but can still fall out and shed at any given time through some minor force.
  • Exogen - This is the final stage, shedding. During exogen, the old hairs fall away as new hairs grow.

Understanding the above cycle can give insight into why dogs take a while to regrow their luxurious fluff. The cycles can be sped up or slowed down based on your dog’s genetic makeup, diet, and habits.

How You Can Help Your Dog’s Hair Grow Back

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Various home remedies and dietary adjustments can help promote hair growth in your four-legged best friend. Essentially, the goal is to provide enough nutrients to help promote a faster growth process or encourage more hair follicles to follow the growth process.

The first is to ensure that your dog’s diet contains good nutrients such as vitamins A, E, C, and zinc. For an extra boost, add beneficial omega-3 and omega-6 because these help fight skin irritation and inflammation. If the skin is angry, the hair won’t grow!

Next, you want to kill any sort of bacteria that could be stifling growth. Bathing your furry friend in an oatmeal shampoo once a week can do just that. Not only is oatmeal soothing for the skin, but it also removes bacteria and dirt very effectively.

Other frequent advice includes spraying lemon juice on your pup (as long as they don’t have any open cuts, sores, or irritated skin), spraying a mixture of vinegar and water on a wet pup, or soothing skin with aloe vera. What these suggestions are supposed to do is kill even more bacteria that could be harming hair growth.

The above options even work for people, so you can share the treatment with your dog!

What Dog Breeds Should Not Be Shaved?

The biggest shaving no-no is going at your double-coated dog with a razor! Any breed that features two layers of fur should not be shaved, excluding emergency circumstances (such as surgery).

To backtrack on our explanation a bit, dogs come in two coat varieties: single coat and double coat.

Single-coated dogs only have one layer of fur. This fur (or hair in some breeds) is only one layer, generally thin, and doesn’t have an undercoat.

Single-coated dogs tend to get cold in the wintertime because they don’t have an insulating layer of fur underneath their primary fur. Single-coated dogs such as poodles and bichons have hair that grows indefinitely, while breeds such as the whippet keep their single coat short. Single coated dogs shed year-round.

Long-haired single-coated dogs are the breeds that you can shave or clip without issue. Their fur will grow back the exact same way it was before!

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Double-coated dogs have two distinct layers of fur. The top layer, which is the one we see, looks a lot like a single coat. It’s a bit thinner, it’s silky, it can be long or somewhat shorter. The second layer, however, is very different.

This layer is known as the undercoat, and it tends to be shorter than the topcoat, sitting tightly underneath, and has a wooly and dense texture. This undercoat is intended to protect the pup from the elements, keeping them insulated in the cold. Double coated dogs “blow their coat” once a year, shedding the underlayer.

You cannot shave double-coated dogs as you will effectively render their natural defense mechanism from the elements useless. As well, their fur will be damaged and will not grow back the same way.

Contrary to popular belief, shaving a double-coated dog in the summer will actually cause them to overheat because they no longer have a defense against the temperature and sun’s rays.

Examples of popular double-coated dogs (that should absolutely not be shaved) include Siberian huskies, Alaskan malamutes, Australian shepherds, border collies, chow chows, German shepherds, Golden Retrievers, Labrador Retrievers, Pomeranians, Corgis, and many more double-coated breeds.


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Dog Hair

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Aviram K.

Aviram K.

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Table Of Contents

1

Can Dogs Regrow Hair?

2

How Long Does It Take for Dogs to Regrow Hair?

3

How You Can Help Your Dog’s Hair Grow Back

4

What Dog Breeds Should Not Be Shaved?

Related Posts

Your Boyfriend Is Jealous of Your Dog? Here's Why
Your Boyfriend Is Jealous of Your Dog? Here's Why
October 2, 2021
6 min
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