Does your ultra-fluffy and goofy Sheepadoodle shed a lot? Well, it can be quite concerning considering this breed is known to be very low shedders. Nonetheless, you can rest assured as I am going to explain how shedding works in this breed and whether it is normal to see a noticeable amount of your Sheepadoodle’s fur on the ground. So what causes a Sheepadoodle to shed?
A Sheepadoodle sheds due to its genes inherited from the Old English Sheepdog that sheds moderately with long-double coats. Therefore, it is normal that your Sheepadoodle sheds. However, the other parent breed “the Poodle dog” does not usually shed which is why some Sheepadoodles also barely shed. All in all, whether the dog sheds or not solely depends on which parent’s shedding genes the dog has inherited.
If your Sheepadoodle sheds, that should probably mean it’s shedding genes are coming from the Old English Sheepdog.
So, it is safe to say that just because a Sheepadoodle sheds, it does not necessarily mean the dog is unhealthy. In fact, it is a fifty-fifty chance that a dog of this breed sheds. So, both shedding or not shedding are expected and usual.
However, what causes a Sheepadoodle to shed can be explained in more detail.
So let me go through each possible cause one by one and give you a thorough understanding of this condition. That way, you will know what is normal shedding and what is not.
- Causes of shedding explained in detail
- How much shedding is too much shedding?
- Can a Sheepadoodle never shed?
- Final thoughts
Causes of shedding explained in detail
The normal causes
These causes are completely usual as they are natural occurrences to this breed. So, if your Sheepadoodle sheds due one of these reasons, you have nothing to be concerned about.
01 – The generation
You see, Sheepadoodles come in different generations based on how they are bred.
In other words, Sheepadoodles are classified into different generations based on how much genes that each parent breed has passed down to a Sheepadoodle’s breed make-up.
As you know already, the Old English Sheepdog usually sheds whereas the Poodle dog does not normally sheds.
So the more genes of the Old English Sheepdog in a Sheepadoodle means there is a higher chance the dog will shed whereas the more genes of the Poodle dog in a Sheepadoodle means there is a very low chance that the dog will shed.
So basically, the genes of each parent breed play a major role in how a Sheepadoodle turns out when it is born such as how much the dog will shed and what kind of diseases it will have inherently.
Here are all the generations:
|SHEEPADOODLE GENARATION||THE POODLE GENES||THE OLD ENGLISH SHEEPDOG GENES|
|Sheepadoodle – F1||50% o||50%|
|Sheepadoodle – F1B||87.5%||12.5%|
|Sheepadoodle – F2||50%||50%|
|Sheepadoodle – F2B||62.5%||37.5%|
|Sheepadoodle – F2BB||81.25%||18.75%|
|Sheepadoodle – F3||Breeding of several generations is backcrossed the Poodle.|
(A hybrid’s crossing of one parent “the Poodle”)
If you look at the table, the F1 Sheepadoodle has a good chance of shedding whereas the F1B Sheepadoodle barely has any potential in shedding.
Click here to learn more about the Sheepadoodle generations and how their size differs based on the generations.
02 – Shedding seasonally
This is common to not only Sheepadoodles but other dog breeds too. Shedding occurs during a certain season of the year. Mostly, your Sheepadoodle can start shedding from the spring to the fall.
In the spring, the dog’s coats get adapted to the warm weather by becoming lighter (does that by shedding)
And in the fall, again, the coats gets changed and adapted to handle the cold weather in the winter (by growing the fur to thicken the coats).
When a Sheppadoodle starts to shed, there will be an extreme-shedding phase where the dog would shed for 2 to 4 weeks continuously.
So, if you notice your Sheepadoodle shedding during this time, then, likely, that can be seasonal shedding which is completely normal and natural.
The Abnormal causes
These causes are surely not usual. Not only are they abnormal but they can harm the dog in more ways than one. Therefore, if your Sheepadoodle sheds due to one of these reasons, then, you certainly should be concerned.
01 – Health problems
Sudden shedding or excessive shedding can be a symptom of an underlying health issue. The most common health condition that causes shedding in Sheepadoodles is stress. Nonetheless, that is not the only condition. There are more diseases that can cause shedding.
So, learn to identify whether it is a symptom of a disease or not and if it is, seek veterinary help ASAP. That is the best course of action.
I am listing the possible diseases below that can cause shedding along with their symptoms. So you can look out for those signs to know when to visit the vet’s office.
Bacterial and viral infections such as rabies, parvo and distemper
- Runny eyes
- Snotty nose
- The skin and coats look abnormally red or swollen
- Excessive scratching
Parasites such as mites, fleas, or lice
- Weight loss
- Decreased activity
- Dull coat
- Blood in stool
- Shaking and Pacing
- Howling, barking or whining
- Drooling and licking a lot
- Yawning excessively
- Weird body postures
- Try to stay hidden or escape
- Loss of appetite
- Excessively urinating
- Weight loss
- Diarrhea or vomiting or both at the same time
- Drinks water too much
- Yellowish eyes and tongue
- Abnormal looking gums
- Indications of weakness
- Sudden weight gain and yet no increase in appetite
- No willingness to exercise
- Gets easily cold
- Dark pigmentation in the skin is increased
- Constantly, a lower heart rate
- Hair and coats look abnormal (Thin, dry and almost bold)
- Hair does not re-grow when groomed and cut
- Redness on the skin
- Skin is sensitive to the touch
- Edges of the ears are cracked, dry or curled
- Digestive issues
- Loss of Appetite (Suddenly, becomes a picky-eater)
- Stunted growth
- Cracked and crusted footpads
If you notice one or more symptoms I have mentioned above, along with shedding, that can clearly mean the dog has an underling disease. So, rush to the vet’s office.
You see, if your Sheepadoodle has such a sickness, the shedding should not be your main concern, it is the disease itself that should be the priority to be cured first.
Shedding is basically a symptom of a disease. So, once the disease is cured and gone, the shedding will also be decreased to its normal and natural state.
02 – A poor Diet
A poor diet is not only a major cause in shedding but many other health issues. A lot of pet-parents buy dry-dog foods, thinking it is the best but in reality, most dog-food brands only meet the minimum requirements of nutrients a dog needs.
A Sheepadoodle needs a high protein diet along with moderate complex and simple carbs and fats. Not only that, micro-nutrients such as vitamins, minerals and omega-3 fatty acids are also crucial.
But your Sheepadoodle can not get all those nutrients only from eating dog-foods. With only dry foods, the dog will lack enough nutrition to maintain healthy coats and growth.
In other words, when a Sheepadoodle eats only dog-foods, it can result in shedding, unhealthy coats and skin.
Therefore, the most optimal thing is to feed the dog both dog-foods and fresh-wet foods that we humans, eat. That way, the nutrients that your dog does not get from its dry foods, can be provided from its wet foods.
In fact, the dog will even enjoy eating both kinds as there will be more variety in the diet.
It is a one stone and two birds kind of situation where your Sheepadoodle gets to enjoy a healthy and balanced diet that will not cause shedding and other health problems.
How much shedding is too much shedding?
How much a Shepadoodle naturally sheds depends on its generation and health state but there are signs of excessive shedding that you can notice easily. They are namely skin irritation (such as rashes and redness), visible bald spots, thinner coats, too much licking, too much face rubbing or itching and open sores.
So, if you ever notice these indications along with shedding, it is surely the time for you to look into this condition and bring your Sheepadoodle to the vet’s office.
In other words, the indications above, mean the dog is shedding too much and it is not normal.
Can a Sheepadoodle never shed?
No, A sheepadoodle sheds at least a little bit. So, keep in mind that only the amount of shedding differs. In fact, it is actually not normal if a Sheppadoodle never sheds unless the dog is one of the American Hairless Terriers that is just physically unable to shed due to being hairless.
However, it is normal to think that a Sheepadoodle might not shed at all considering the fact that they are low-shedders and have genes of Poodles that do not really shed whatsoever.
But do not forget that Sheepadoodles also have the genes of the Old English Sheepdogs that actually shed. So, that means a Sheepadoodle must be able to shed at least a little bit.
It is normal that A sheepadoodle sheds since it is an inherent aptitude of the dog passed down by its parent breeds. So, you do not need to be concerned about it but there maybe exceptions to that.
When the dog sheds for reasons such as health issues and a poor diet, you must not overlook it.
In fact, you should check whether there are symptoms of a health issue and if there are any, then bring the dog to the vet’s office ASAP. Also, re-check the diet and ensure the dog is getting all of its nutrients in sufficient amounts.
However, keep in mind that shedding is not something for you to be always worried about as it is something that every dog does naturally. Just make sure your Sheepadoodle is healthy and gets examined by the vet regularly. That is all.
Featured image credit: Photo by Ironlion27 from Wikimedia Commons