Do Goldendoodles Shed?
And what can you do about it?

April 14, 2021

Goldendoodles are loved in the dog world thanks to their great personalities, cute appearance, and their "hypoallergenic" coats. When somebody says that, they usually are referring to the dog's tendency to shed, not their ability to prevent somebody who is allergic from having a reaction.

Although this breed is this not actually hypoallergenic, as no dog breed is, it is considered one because it is less likely to cause an allergic reaction when compared to many other breeds. This, however, does not mean Goldendoodles don't shed.

In fact, they do shed, and the factors behind their shedding are quite interesting.

Goldendoodle puppy
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    How Much Do Goldendoodles Shed?

    Goldendoodles DO shed, and how much they actually shed is going to depend on their DNA. It will depend on how much Poodle and how much Golden Retriever they have in them.

    Golden Retrievers are known to be heavy shedders, while Poodles don't really shed that much. Depending on their genes, Goldendoodles may go either way when it comes to shedding.

    Breeding a golden retriever and a poodle together yields you a 50% chance that you will end up with a dog that sheds lightly and a 50% chance the dog will shed heavily.

    Their shedding takes place when their hormones tell them it is time to do so. As a result, shedding takes place thanks to a number of different factors such as the amount of daylight, and hormones like testosterone, progesterone, and cortisol.

    You already know that the breed is a mix of Golden Retriever and Poodle. Poodles have a single layer coat; Golden Retrievers have a double layer coat. For the poodle, shedding happens just once a year during springtime. For the golden retriever, they shed all year round, but specifically in spring and fall.

    But what does this mean for the actual Goldendoodle? Read on to find out all the many factors that play into how much a Goldendoodle sheds.

    For example, having a long or short coat plays a significant role in keeping the fur clean and neat, and reducing shedding. You will also discover how the genetics of your Goldendoodle play a role.

    Why Do Goldendoodles Shed So Much?

    How much your Goldendoodle sheds is based on genetics. Let's take a closer look.

    Say you have an F1 Goldendoodle- that means the first generation. The parents of this dog were a purebred Golden Retriever and a purebred Poodle.

    We know that golden retrievers are dogs known for their heavy shedding, whereas poodles are low shedders. Breeding these two dogs together makes it so their offspring will be dogs that do shed, but not as heavy as an actual Golden Retriever, and not as light as a poodle.

    Indeed, breeding a golden retriever and a poodle together yields you a 50% chance that you will end up with a dog that sheds lightly and a 50% chance the dog will shed heavily. But thanks to the nuances of genetics, and the way they express themselves, this will vary from doodle to doodle.

    Now Let's Change Up the Scenario A Bit...

    Suppose you have a first-generation Goldendoodle that was bred with a purebred poodle.

    This would make your dog one-quarter golden retriever and three-quarters poodle. As a result of this, we are pretty much guaranteed that the dog will shed lightly, thanks to the higher number of genes from the poodle parent. This is, of course, because poodles are dogs known to shed far less than some other breeds.

    goldendoodle shedding hair

    Aside from the genetic aspect of things, the type of coat your Goldendoodle has will also play a role in how much they shed.

    Having a long or short coat- which is determined by a gene called FgF5 is a factor. Shorter coats tend to happen in earlier Goldendoodle generations, such as F1b or F1. Most of the time, Goldendoodle puppies will be long coat dogs.

    Other genes that impact how much your Goldendoodle will shed are known as RSP02 and MC5R. RsP02 is known as the furnishing’s gene, which produces the facial hair you see on Goldendoodles, such as their mustache and eyebrows.

    The discovery of these two genes has been a tremendous help to breeders and researchers in putting together the "shedding index." This index rates how much dogs shed- with zero being no shedding all the way to 4, which is heavy shedding.

    Breeders have the capability of testing for these genes, and this will help you decide which dog to adopt. Goldendoodles who test positive for the A variant of the MC5R gene will virtually ensure a low shed dog.

    Also, ask your breeder to test for the gene RSP02. It is the furnishing gene and will help you foresee how much your Goldendoodle puppy will shed once they become an adult.

    Factors That Can Affect Your Goldendoodle’s Shedding

    Seasons

    The sunlight and the temperature outside play a role in how much your dog sheds. In winter, we experience less sunlight. The temperatures drop low. This, in turn, causes your Goldendoodle to begin growing a new coat, whilst getting rid of the old one to accommodate these new environmental changes.

    Meanwhile, in summer, the days are longer, and the temps are warmer. As a result, the Goldendoodle sheds the winter coat, making room for a coat that feels better in warm temperatures.

    Like most breeds, the Goldendoodle sheds twice a year as a means of adapting to these seasonal changes. If you have a Goldendoodle that lives mostly indoors, where the temperature remains constant, and natural light is limited, you may find that your dog sheds continuously instead of bi-annually.

    Type of Coat

    A Goldendoodle is a double coat dog. This means that the dog has a soft, short, but also a quite dense undercoat. They also have a top coat, which is more or less a protective outer layer for the undercoat. This topcoat is the one we see visibly- it is longer and rougher than the undercoat as its main job is to protect the skin and undercoat of your dog.

    A common misconception among dog lovers is that short hair variants shed less than long-haired ones – this is not true.

    To see the undercoat, gently pull back the hair of your dog and see how the coat follows to the skin. Look closely, as the undercoat can be quite dense and close to the skin! Double coat dogs shed hugely twice per year; as we mentioned, this mostly takes place during the arrival of the spring and winter seasons.

    And one other side note we'd like to mention: do not let coat length determine the type of Goldendoodle you should adopt. A common misconception among dog lovers is that short hair variants shed less than long-haired ones – this is not true.

    However, having a short-haired dog will make it easier to groom the animal, as the fur is less apt to become tangled or knotted.

    goldendoodle top coat

    Losing the Puppy Hair

    A puppy is born with a soft coat of fur. It helps keep the body temperature regulated and protects the animal from environmental hazards. The puppy fur is usually shorter than the adult fur, and you will notice as your pup grows, his fur begins to feel thick and rough in nature.

    The appearance of the fur changes thanks to the arrival of the adult fur. Shedding of the puppy coat can happen when the animal reaches three months old. However, it will vary from dog to dog.

    You will notice your pet looking a little shaggy as this process takes place, and there is no reason to be concerned. Other things you may notice include changes in fur color or its pattern. These are all part of your dog going from being a puppy to an adult.

    Age

    We have already talked about how puppies lose their puppy hair, and that adult dogs shed regularly. But what about senior or older dogs? In most cases, hair loss in senior Goldendoodles isn't something to worry about. 

    However, some dogs can develop a thin coat known as hypotrichosis or alopecia. The best thing to do if you suspect a difference in coat thickness is to ask your groomer what they think.

    These individuals deal directly with dog hair and will be able to help you understand why your dog's hair is the way it is. Then, you can make an appointment with the vet if needed to get the dog on a treatment path.

    Nutrition

    What your Goldendoodle eats plays a role in their coat and skin health. A dog with healthy skin has healthy hair follicles which give the pet his beautiful and shiny coat. Meanwhile, unhealthy skin usually comes with lacking skin oils and, in turn, dull, brittle hair.

    If a dog is not getting the right amount of nutrients and calories, hair can end up looking worse for the wear, and may even fall out.

    Opt for quality dog foods that are loaded with nutrients, and for hair health, look for a healthy amount of protein, Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, and whole grains, which give the dog carbohydrates. The combination of all these nutrients will give the dog what he needs to have a healthy coat.

    Health

    If a dog has an allergy, they may scratch excessively and thus pull their hair out. As a result, these dogs look like they shed more than dogs who do not have allergies. Having fleas, for example, can lead a dog to scratch intensely.

    The cleanliness of the skin also plays a role in how your dog sheds. Hair that is dirty or matted lets bacteria grow faster and may infect the hair follicles, which leads to hair loss.

    Baths

    Bathing your dog excessively can lead to shedding that is frequent and more pronounced. If your dog is dirty, then, by all means, bathe him. However, bathing is not required for dogs more than once a month, if that.

    Bathing a dog too much can lead him to have dandruff, as well as the increased loss of hair. The oils of your dog's coat are washed away when he is bathed, leading to more shedding.

    On the other hand, bathing once a month with proper dog shampoo (don't use your own shampoo on your dog) will loosen dead hair and help you control shedding when combined with regular brushing.

    Hormonal Cycles

    Thyroid hormones stimulate follicles, which enables them to spend more time growing hair and less time resting.

    This is why dogs dealing with hypothyroidism have coats that are dry and thin, and thus lack thyroxin as a means of activating the follicles. Other hormones that affect the dog's coat include testosterone, progesterone, cortisol, and growth hormone.

    How to Reduce a Goldendoodle’s Shedding?
    7 Actionable Tips

    1. Brushing

    A good bristle brush will help you keep your Goldendoodle's coat under control and looking great.

    • If you have a doodle with a longer coat, look for a bristle brush that has wider spaced and longer bristles.
    • If the doodle has particularly coarse hair, opt for a brush with stiff bristles.

    Brush your doodle a few times a week - some of you may need to brush every day depending on your individual dog.

    2. Deshedding

    A great shedding tool will also help keep your pup looking good and minimize the fur you see. Opt for a de-shedding tool that is designed just for the removal of dead hair from your dog's coat. It will help you see a reduction in the amount of "tumbleweeds" you see, floating around your residence.

    slicker brush

    3. Bathing

    Regular baths are a great way to reduce shedding. You can use a good de-shedding shampoo- these are made with moisturizers and nutrients that will hydrate the skin of your dog and, in turn, promote healthier hair follicles.

    A regular monthly bath plus de-shedding and brushing help you minimize shedding

    These shampoos also help loosen up and remove the excess undercoat. A regular monthly bath plus de-shedding and brushing help you minimize shedding.

    4. Grooming

    You can take your dog to the groomer, or groom your dog at home. Goldendoodles must use an undercoat rake- this tool pulls out the loose undercoat.

    You should keep gently pulling it through until it goes through the hair easily. If your dog has mats in his fur, you can use a de-matting rake to untangle the mats.

    5. Healthy Nutrition

    Dogs that get fed a healthy and balanced diet will have all the vitamins, minerals, and nutrients needed to live a healthy life. Their hair will resist breakage and grow to a soft, glossy coat. Make sure your dog's food gives him adequate Omega-3 fatty acids- and if not, check with your vet about a good Omega-3 supplement you can give to your dog to support his hair growth.

    6. Clean Water

    Make sure clean, fresh water is always available. A good rule of thumb is that the dog should drink one ounce per pound of their weight. Having a dehydrated dog is one surefire way to see lots of loose hair floating around.

    7. Prevent and Treat Skin Diseases

    Make sure regular vet visits are part of your agenda. Alopecia, skin allergies, infections, or parasites can all plague your pooch and cause him to lose hair, whether it is by scratching or because hair follicles are no longer healthy.

    If your dog is showing excessive hair loss or patches of hair are falling out, get him to the vet right away.

    What Causes Excessive Shedding in Goldendoodles?

    Dogs that shed excessively are likely under stress, dealing with a medical issue, or experiencing a lack of nutrients in their diet.

    It is always best to check with a vet as he or she can determine if the excessive shedding is normal due to the season or the precursor to a bigger issue that must be treated.

    Just what are a few of the reasons your Goldendoodle could be shedding excessively?

    Lack of proper nutrients is one reason. Your dog may be allergic or sensitive to something in his food or environment. Or, there could be a parasite or pest that is leading your dog to lose his hair.

    Here are some common reasons behind excessive shedding: 

    • Food allergies
    • Excessive licking in a specific area
    • Lice, mites, fleas; parasites
    • Infections of the bacterial or fungal variety
    • Lactation or pregnancy
    • Medications
    • Having contact with irritants
    • Cancer

    Do you notice any of the following conditions in your dog? If so, talk to a vet right away to get him on a treatment plan.

    • Bald spots/ thin coat
    • Constant licking of the face or foot
    • Open sores
    • Irritation of the skin such as redness or scabs
    • Hair that is dull, dry, easily pulled out

    FAQ

    To help wrap up, let's go over some frequently asked questions when it comes to Goldendoodles and their special double coat. 

    Is A Goldendoodle Hypoallergenic?

    Unfortunately, there is no such thing as a hypoallergenic breed. Even if a dog totally lacked hair, they would still produce the dander- aka the allergens- that would cause people allergic to dogs to have a reaction.

    The reason these dogs are considered hypoallergenic is that they are related to poodles, a breed known to be "hypoallergenic," or less likely to cause a reaction in those sensitive to dog hair.

    Do Goldendoodles Need Haircuts?

    It is dependent on the look you want your doodle to have. If you have a Goldendoodle that you like to be styled a certain way- or, kept in a clip- you should visit the groomer every 6 to 8 weeks. If your Goldendoodle sports a shorter clip style, then grooming every 8 to 10 weeks is appropriate.

    Will My Goldendoodle Puppy Stop Shedding?

    Once your Goldendoodle puppy grows in their adult coat, yes, they will stop shedding as much as they are now. The loss of the puppy coat to usher in the adult coat is normal.

    However, your Goldendoodle will always be shedding- this is normal and can be kept under control with regular brushing, grooming, and baths. You can also ask your groomer for a "puppy clip" which is excellent for long-coat Goldendoodles. Some groomers may call it the "teddy bear clip." It is a short but cute clip that keeps grooming and brushing at home easy

    Conclusion

    Goldendoodles are no doubt some of the most loving and wonderful dogs out there, but their shedding can really take a toll on people who don't know about it. Thankfully, keeping it under control is as easy as good brushing, grooming, and nutrition habits.

    Enjoy spending time with your Goldendoodle!

    Matt Clayton

    Matt Clayton

    Chief Editor & Founder of PetHairPatrol

    Matt is the founder of PetHairPatrol.com and has years of experience helping pet owners keep their homes clean. He's been featured in publications like Reader's Digest, Money, and BestLifeOnline. When this neat freak is not searching for better ways to get rid of pet hair, dander, and other messes pets leave behind, he's usually enjoying outdoors with his two (hairy) Goldens: Ben and Jerry. Read more.

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