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I'm looking for more information on how to care for Ember's smooth coat. I bathed her last night and spent almost 45 minutes brushing her out, and today she is dropping fur like she is a snow cloud. I can't seem to get it under control, so I'm wondering if I'm just not caring for it properly (for instance, could it simply be that this fur was loose LOOOONG ago and it is just now falling out because I don't brush often enough or correctly?). Thankfully washing it restored it to a super soft feel and glossy shine, but I can't seem to get the shedding under any form of control. No matter how much I brush I get the same amount off of her, and I don't want to brush her raw. I'm using both a Sleekez and a regular horse-hair brush - she seems to like both, but can get a little tender with Sleekez overuse.

I also figure this post, with the information provided, could serve as a central point for other people looking for the same.

I'm looking for information on external care for all types (but I'm specifically asking about my smooth coat girl too). Do they require different care? Different types of brushes? Bathing rituals? Length and time of brushing? Those kinds of things.


The pictures below were taken in about a 2 minute span. She came up, and I noticed the loose fur on her, took the first photo, rubbed her chest, and she walked off. And that interaction resulted in the second picture.

[Image: IMG_0982-e1501779722136.jpg]

[Image: IMG_0983.jpg]
I don't care what the breed is or what time of year it is, bathing loosens up hair. In general, BCs require being brushed no more than once a week, except while they are shedding. Brushing once a day does help distribute coat oils and so keep them shinier, but that really is a personal preference. During shedding, they should be brushed once a day to help them shed out, because all the loose hair is itchy.
Alright, I'm gonna follow the line of thinking that I failed to help her shed out over winter (but still keeping thyroid in mind until I get that test done on the 14th). Therefore I will brush her every day up to a week, looking for changes in amount of shed fur.

Day 1 - after bath, 45 min brush session
Day 2 - 30 min brush session (timed out by a show I had on in the background)

It feels like the under-fur (guard hair?). Super soft and downy, and grey in color (not black).

Day 2 result:
[Image: IMG_0984.jpg]
On a thread a while back, someone recommended using an undercoat comb. I thought I had been doing OK with the slicker brush, seemed to be getting plenty out and felt good. When I first tried the comb I couldn't even get it through the coat. It seems the coat needs to be VERY well brushed first. I mean VERY well. I would start down low with the slicker, holding all other coat up and work upwards just letting go of 1/2 inch at a time. When done I had another go with the comb and OH MY GOODNESS you should have seen the undercoat that still came out. Tending to be in small clumps at times and it was just as much hair as had come away with the brushing. It was the pile you show above, twice over. I like to bath after brushing so once bathed I do another quick once over when dry and I got 1/3 the amount again. It was a big lesson in grooming thanks to the ABC thread.

Max's coat is long and silky with not a particularly thick undercoat. He is also the "teflon" one in that he can be 100% filth but once dry is clean, snowy white and does not retain dust. Jasper is different, insanely thick undercoat and clearly where I had underestimated what I should be doing. He is not as teflon and on bath day his water will be 10 times dirtier. However, now that I have found the benefits of the comb that might change.

I think that while there are many generalisations with coats and care, they are all individuals as well. Max's care did not prepare me for Jaspers care at all. One thing I will say is that no matter how well I think I am grooming and no matter what time of year it is, I have tumbleweeds of hair through the house everyday, it is just phenomenal. There is a lady at the markets that spins wool on a wheel by hand, we have joked about the possibility of a BC scarf for winter. I mean, we ware sheep coat so would it really be wrong ? hehehehe
I prefer a slicker for removing undercoat.

And this is NOT hair you failed to remove last winter. This is the time of year they drop their summer coat to START growing fur for this winter. It's controlled by the changes in daylight hours and there is nothing you can do to hasten or delay it other than to make sure she isn't exposed to daylight, an who would want to do that. If it were hair you failed to remove, you would have noticed clumps of mats, because the hair comes loose regardless of you brushing. It either falls to the ground and gets on everything, or it stays stuck on the dog because of matting.
@"Trifan" , I may have to look for that comb! I started backwards with the Sleekez for the first time today, thanks for the reminder. I started seeing some sandy dandruff doing it that way, but I also felt like I got more out in one shot as opposed to constantly going over the same areas. Ember actually started napping on me LOL! Guess it felt good! Probably helped that she also got a good muscle rub at the same time. I'm actually tempted to try rubbing her down with coconut oil on my hands (she's being goofy with food again and I can't seem to be able to mix it in well enough to hide it).

It's also hard because of how long I've had her - 2 years November, and the first year was probably pure stress for her. Maybe I am just now seeing what "normal" is for her? Who knows Tongue I feel like I have no standard to go by. Helps to know this amount is normal though!

@"Gideon's mom" very good to know! I thought it would be weather based. Didn't consider sunlight. I wonder if Daylight Savings Time screws them up as much as it screws us up Tongue
How much extra coat they grow MAY be weather based, but when they grow it and shed it is based on changes in daylight. They try to trick show horses into keeping their summer coat longer by keeping them indoors under artificial lighting so they don't start growing winter coat until later, and they blanket them even though it's already warm(ridiculous, I know) to keep them from growing a thick coat. They have a crappy life, if you ask me.
As a groomer our process for double-coated breeds was to brush them out with a slicker, use an undercoat rake to remove loose, dead hair from undercoat, bath, conditioner (brush with conditioner in hair), rinse, blow out with force dryer, dry remainder with blow dryer, brush one last time with slicker, use blow dryer to blow off any loose hair before giving to owner. I know that sounds like a lot so I would recommend a combination of using the undercoat rake (paws pamper undercoat rake is great) with a slicker brush and/or greyhound comb after the bath. Let her shake off any leftover loose hair outside or use your blow-dryer. Good Luck!
(08-04-2017, 12:56 PM)Gideon Wrote: [ -> ]How much extra coat they grow MAY be weather based, but when they grow it and shed it is based on changes in daylight.  They try to trick show horses into keeping their summer coat longer by keeping them indoors under artificial lighting so they don't start growing winter coat until later, and they blanket them even though it's already warm(ridiculous, I know) to keep them from growing a thick coat.  They have a crappy life, if you ask me.

Yes GM that is the life of my neighbours horses. Completely covered all year round including hoods with ears and only holes for eyes. Recently they have even started using lycra type suits that fit snug all over. This happens even in summer so the coat doesn't fade. They go into a stable at sundown where the lights are left on all night all year round. I can see that the lycra is probably good for protecting against bot fly without using chemicals but it's not a life I would choose for my horse when I had one.
my dog has renal problem. do you think that is why she is shedding big lumps of hair
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