Dyson engineers and microbiologists have studied animal hair, including common pets like dogs and cats, but also more unexpected animals including alpacas and horses, to better understand its size, texture, structure, and the invisible allergens and bacteria they can introduce to the home. When pets groom themselves, they can deposit minute allergy-triggering protein particles from their saliva and onto their hair and skin, which is then carried on their fur and coats.
Beyond cleaning up the loose pet hair around the home, regular grooming reduces the amount of hair that is shed. Read on for tips on how to groom your pets, particularly in the hot summer months.
Get a summer haircut
For pets with naturally dense hair, getting a summer haircut allows heat to escape their bodies, giving them some relief from the summer heat.
All dogs require a haircut, but it cannot be cut too short. Breeds with double coats, such as Huskies and Golden Retrievers, have fur that helps regulate their body temperature and protects their skin from the sun. Cutting their fur short may be harmful to their health. However, if your dog has a single coat or continuously growing hair, such as a Shih Tzu or Maltese, a summer haircut might be beneficial. Nonetheless, it’s critical to consider the length and thickness of their hair and their skin type.
If you’re unsure about how to cut your dog’s hair, it’s always a good idea to seek professional help.
Regardless of season, it is always recommended to groom your pets regularly to remove loose hairs, reducing the amount of fur that is shed around the home. However, this is particularly important in the summer months. As temperatures increase, pets with winter coats such as Golden Retrievers and Huskies will shed these to keep cool, leaving fur around your home.
Choosing the appropriate grooming tool is crucial to ensure that you remove loose hair, pet dander, dirt, debris, and other allergens including pollen and dust mites that may stick to pet hair effectively, while also avoiding matting and tangling.
Frequent bath and overall cleanliness
Frequently bathing your pet becomes crucial during summers as they are more prone to accumulating dirt, debris, and allergens including pollen on their skin and coat. Giving your dog a bath with normal water temperature is ideal. The frequency of baths depends on your pet’s breed, coat type, and lifestyle. For dogs with medium to large coats, baths could be needed from weekly to every 4-6 weeks, as long as the coat is properly maintained during baths. Over-bathing can strip their coat of its natural oils, leading to dryness, irritation, and even skin problems. In addition, regular nail trimming, and paw and ear care are crucial elements of your pet’s grooming routine. Also, take preventative measures such as regularly check for ticks, particularly around the tail and under the collar.
By: Monika Stuczen, Research Scientist in Microbiology at Dyson