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Pomeranians are cute, fluffy furballs that are an absolute joy to hug. As the owner, you also want your dog to look and feel its best. You can tell the health of your Pomeranian by how shiny and luscious their thick fur coats are. For example, if their fur starts to shed in larger volumes than usual, there might be an underlying problem worth investigating.
Here are 4 key tips to help your dog maintain a healthy coat of fur
As the saying goes ‘You are what you eat.’. Same goes for your Pomeranian. When planning what to feed your dog, always listen to your breeder’s advice. They know best. Most reliable breeders have come up with a diet that suits your Pomeranian. They are usually careful to give new puppy owners a diet sheet to follow through from puppyhood to adult age.
Diet impacts your dog’s fur quality, and more importantly, its health and longevity. However, different dogs have different dietary requirements and limitations. It will be wise to seek advice from your vet in terms of what your particular breed of Pom can consume, or to test for any allergic reactions.
Cooked dog food is almost always preferable to dry dog food purchased from the local pet store. If you use healthy ingredients to cook for your dog, this reduces the risk of adverse reactions, and the coat of a dog often reveals the quality of food that it eats.
A diet of raw lamb, beef bones, tripe lamb, chicken and beef, 2-3 days a week, along with a healthy carb like brown rice is a healthy natural diet for a dog. You can either purchase the meat fresh from the local butcher or market, or simply from pet food stores, or frozen from the supermarket. These meats you provide comprise amino acids that help your Pom maintain its sturdy bones and strong muscles. Meat is also a great source of energy. Your pom’s diet should consist of 25-35% of protein. Of course, do remember that moderation is key.
Fruits and Vegetables
Fruits are awesome too. Bananas, oranges, blackberries and apples are excellent choices but do not feed your dog with grapes (it is toxic). Lettuce, carrots and other leafy greens are great sources of fibre for your Pom. Both of these provide ample vitamins and minerals that will support healthy development of your Pom, and of course, make your Pom’s coat radiate with beauty.
Dairy products such as eggs, yoghurt, cheese, are safe and healthy options for your Pom to consume as part of a daily diet. Yoghurt is a rich source of probiotics that promote your dog’s digestive health and can be given to your Pom in moderation.
Carbohydrates are organic compounds made up of a combination of sugars, starch and cellulose. Your Pom, as with another animal, rely on carbs for energy. The cellulose from ve getable-based carbs becomes roughage (or fibre) that keeps your Pom’s digestive system moving along smoothly. Cook your cute lil’ Pom some brown rice, couscous, oatmeal, quinoa with lentils, peas, beans and/or chickpeas. Wheat is commonly used in dog food, but many dogs are allergic to wheat so it may be safer to avoid feeding your dogs this carb. Boiled potatoes are great alternatives as well. Do note that carbs should comprise about 50% of your Pom’s diet.
Fats provide a fast surge of energy and are vital for your Pom’s skin and hair health. Omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids are fantastic options to help keep your Pom’s skin supple and healthy Without enough oil, your Pom’s fur may get dull and brittle.
Although your dog doesn’t need to consume supplements as if it is participating in a bodybuilding competition, they may still benefit from taking a tablet of evening primrose oil, flaxseed oil, or fish oil at a dosage of 500 mg daily. This is useful if the dog’s coat is unhealthy due to having a poor diet in the past or if the dog has a flea or allergy problem. Always consult your vet if you are unsure if your dog can consume these supplements safely.
Exercise & Weather
Taking care of your lil’ Pom is no different than taking care of any human being. Moderate exercise helps to stimulate blood flow, which in turn translates to a healthy coat of fur. Taking your dog for a walk in the park, playing frisbee in your home garden, hiking at the local nature reserve are all great options to get into a little sweat.
Whenever you bring your little doggo to the park, always remember that your dog will be exposed to insects, bacteria and other foreign, unwelcome organisms. These organisms unfortunately could be the cause of certain skin conditions which we explore in the next few section. Always check your dog carefully after a walk. Remove any burrs, grass seeds or debris that may have accumulated after an afternoon’s jumping in the sandpit or soil before you let your Pom back into your immaculate home.
Do not to expose your Pom too long under the strong summer sun or to the dry winter air. The heat and dry air can damage your Pom’s precious coat of fur. To mitigate this issue, consider getting a light conditioner or moisturizer that you can apply on your dog’s fur before going out.
In order to prevent damage to your Pom’s fur, it should be sleeping on the right type of bedding. If your dog constantly lies on rough surfaces such as concrete, this will wear the hair off its elbows and other joints. A dog lying on grass all the time may get bitten by insects or parasites and may develop skin irritations from the damp environment. Scratching at insect bites and mites certainly can damage your dog’s beautiful fur and is to be avoided if possible.
If your dog has its own doggy bed, then ensure that you wash your dog’s bedding regularly and floors should be kept clean. Be cautious not to use a floor disinfectant that is too strong or toxic for your dog. The reason is that some of these chemicals may get onto your dog’s skin or coat. Your dog could suffer from chemical poisoning if it accidentally licks its paws.
Detect skin problems early
Regular grooming such as brushing your Pom’s coat twice a week helps you to detect any health problems with your dog early. As your Pom ages, it is not abnormal for your Pom to encounter skin disorders and allergic reactions. Make sure you get your local vet to run tests to rule out anything serious.
A common skin condition that may occur to your Pom is eczema. Signs of eczema are often obvious and easily observed. If you see red, itchy, inflamed or cracked skin when combing your Pom, you can be certain that your Pom is experiencing some form of skin irritation. Other signs of skin problems that you should be on the lookout for include:
- Red patches, spots and pimples
- Scabs, crusts or thickened skin
- Hair loss
- Flaky or scaly patches
- Bad skin odor
- Constant itching, scratching, licking or rubbing
Eczema could be caused by an allergic reaction to certain dog foods, environmental factors such as dust or pollen. Parasite invasions such as mites, lice and fleas are also huge culprits. These ectoparasites which live on the skin are the major cause of skin disease in dogs.
Another common issue that can damage your dog’s beautiful coat of fur is the presence of fleas. Goodness, they’re tiny but they’re terrible. They cause a huge number of skin allergies. They are your Pom’s bane of existence. Fleas can easily lay eggs in your dog’s fur, your dog’s bed and around the house. If you notice any unusual red patches on your dog’s skin or if it is constantly scratching itself, it’s time to pay the vet a visit. Ensure that the entire home environment is given a thorough cleaning (especially furniture and carpets) and treatment.
To check if your lil’ Pom has fleas, comb along the skin of your Pom with a fine-tooth comb. Once you combed a few times, lay the contents on the tip of the comb on a piece of tissue and wet it. If you see red spots, those are revealing of fleas that have sucked the blood of your cute lil’ Pom.
As you can see, getting your dog a clean coat of fur is not rocket science. As long as you provide a healthy diet, regular exercise and grooming, a clean place to stay, your dog’s fur will increasingly resemble the hair of models in a Pantene hair commercial. Now, that’s a clear winner.
- Ultimate Dog Grooming (2nd Edition) by Eileen Geeson
- Dogs 101: Pomeranian by Sandy Bergstrom Mesmer