January 14, 2022 3 min read

It’s a common misconception that fur requires the same maintenance as human hair. While a dog's coat is made of keratin just like humans, it’s similarities end there. For example, while humans only have one hair that grows from each follicle, the way it grows from the follicle of a furbaby varies depending on whether it is a whisker, part of the fluffy undercoat, or guard hair better known as the topcoat. 

  • The topcoat is usually what most people see at first when they are looking at a double-coated dog, this hair is thicker and protects the dog’s skin from minor cuts and the weather
  • The undercoat grows as multiple hairs from each follicle, protecting the dog's skin and keeping it insulated during the cold weather. 
  • Whiskers act as the dog’s ‘feelers,’ with deep follicle roots and thick hairs that give dogs extra sensory perception. When something comes into contact with the whiskers the dog will either recoil or close its eyes as a natural reflex. 

Not all dogs have all three of these hair types. Collies and German Shepherds for example are double-coated and have both a top coat and an undercoat making them more resilient to changes in weather. French bulldogs and Malteses only have one coat. 

No matter how much fur your furbaby has, it is important to regularly look after and groom your furbaby. Below are some tips for a beautiful, healthy coat.


1. A healthy intake of protein

Did you know that 80-90% of your fur baby's coat is made up of protein? Keratin is the key component in hair and a lack of protein can cause the coat to become brittle and break easily. Make sure your furbaby has a balanced diet of protein so it’s fur grow thick and strong

Recommended from the store: Beef tubes - excellent source of protein


2. Omega fatty acids

In order to keep a glossy coat, your furbaby needs healthy fats in their diet. Hair follicles produce oils that keep the hair glossy and help to keep as much water as possible off the skin. Incorporating Omega-3 and Omega-6 into your furbabies diet will ensure that their coat stays nice and glossy. Be careful not to overdo it however with store-bought highly concentrated fish oil capsulas, as these oils can be quite strong on the stomach and make them nauseous if they have too much. 

Recommended from the store: Fish snacks for dogs


3. Groom and pamper

Regular grooming will help to manually stimulate blood flow to the hair follicles, promoting healthy hair growth. Every dog is different, so your brushing and grooming routine will depend on your furbaby's unique coat.

Another way of increasing circulation to the skin is by pampering your furbaby with a massage. To increase the effectiveness you can also use coconut oil to add extra lustre and prevent minor skin infections with its antimicrobial and healing properties. 


4. Skincare and parasite prevention

Healthy skin provides the best foundation for healthy hair to follow. Ticks and fleas cause your furbaby to scratch and bite, causing wounds in the skin which can cause fur to become matted. Preventing parasites from getting onto your furbaby is the best form of protection. Talk to your vet about preventative medications and keep your furbaby’s surroundings clean and vacuumed.