Basset Hounds are adorable dogs who are often sweet-tempered and deeply devoted to their family or owner. They’re considered a scent breed and were used as hunting dogs for small game in the past. When considering adopting one, you may have questions concerning how much they shed and how to take care of their short coat. Here’s what you need to know about Basset Hounds, their water-repellant coats and the amount of fur and dander to expect around the home.
This breed of dog is well-known to shed moderately to heavily and have short coats that are generally easy to maintain with the proper care and tools. Basset Hounds shed constantly throughout the year and while they may not be a big breed, their fur can build up over time around the home if not taken care of frequently. Dogs shed for a variety of reasons with the rate of fur loss affected by the breed and by the unique characteristics of the dog.
There’s no need to shave your Basset Hound’s fur as their coats are short and don’t affect the overall rate of shedding. If you’re interested in adopting a Basset Hound, you should be aware of how much maintenance is required to take proper care of them and what sort of cleaning you’ll need to start to keep the house relatively clean. Don’t miss out on a loving relationship with this dog breed and instead learn more about how you can get ahead of the curve with shedding and coat care.
How much do Basset Hounds shed?
You may not have expected such a little dog to shed quite so much, but Basset Hounds are known to shed a moderate to high amount all year long. A dog’s shedding rate can be affected by the time of year, overall health status, age and more. For many dog breeds, they’ll lose larger amounts of fur in the spring when they’re getting rid of their winter coat in preparation for the warmer summer months and also in the fall right before winter.
This is a regular shedding schedule that most experienced dog owners are familiar with and expect each year. Basset Hounds, however, are more likely to shed all year long at an averagely higher rate than other breeds.
Shedding is a normal part of owning a dog with fur and should be expected to some degree no matter the breed or dog size. Old hair stops growing and needs to fall or be brushed out so new, healthy growth can take its place. There are three common stages of hair growth in healthy dogs. In the first stage called Anagen, the hair begins to grow from the roots below the skin.
In the Catagen stage, that hair strand breaks or snaps away from the skin around it. In the final Telogen stage, the hair is still in the follicle but is no longer growing or attached and needs to be shed or removed so new hair can grow in. Basset Hounds have shorter hair and therefore their hair doesn’t need to grow as long to reach its maximum height. This accounts for the naturally high shed rate.
There are many health and environmental conditions that can also affect how much a Basset Hound is shedding around the home. The season, amount of sunshine during the day and average temperature can affect how much a Basset Hound is shedding. If they’re not ingesting enough minerals, vitamins and protein in their food, their shedding can increase due to dry skin and brittle hair.
Just like how older humans often struggle to grow hair the same way they did when they were younger, the age of a Basset Hound can affect how healthy their follicles are and how long they can hold fur in place. Stress and health problems can also cause compromised immune systems, which affect the body as a whole.
What do I need to do to take care of my Basset Hound’s coat?
Basset Hounds have incredibly easy coats to maintain as long as you’re willing to put the work in on a weekly or even daily basis. Their coats are water repellant and won’t often get dirt or debris caught up between the fur and skin. They’re very unlikely to develop mats or knots because the fur is so short.
Brushing them out a few times per week is a great way to cut down on some of the shedding and keep their coats happy and healthy. They can even be brushed daily for much less shedding as long as the tool doesn’t irritate their skin or cause harm.
A rubber curry brush or bristle brush are great options for combs that work well to remove dead hair. Once or twice a week is an optimal amount to brush a Basset Hound so their skin doesn’t become irritated or potentially injured by the brush. Frequent coat care helps owners to check for any strange new marks on the skin and to distribute the natural oils around the body.
Basset Hounds also need to be bathed semi-regularly, which can help with their natural odor if it bothers you. They also need their nails trimmed to keep them short and manageable and their teeth brushed daily just like with other dog breeds. Basset Hounds are known to develop a thick, black build-up in their ears that should be watched out for and cleaned out with wet wipes or a washcloth.
Basset Hounds are great dogs to have around the home and are easy to maintain when you understand how much they shed and what can be done to cut down on pet fur and dander. Every lifelong pet companion requires a little extra work and care to make sure they’re comfortable and healthy, and Basset Hounds are no different.
Are Basset Hounds hypoallergenic?
Basset Hounds are not hypoallergenic and can trigger allergies, especially if their coats aren’t maintained properly. This breed may have very short hair, but it’s also thick and rough and sheds constantly throughout the year.
With a great vacuum and regular combings throughout the week, their fur and dander around the home can be minimized to make it a safer area for those with allergies. For those with more intense allergies toward pet dander, a Basset Hound may not be the right companion to have around the home.
Should a Basset Hound be my first dog?
Basset Hounds make for great first pets and have lovely temperaments. They’re affectionate and gentle and grow to be very devoted to their families. They tend to shed at a moderate rate, but that can be managed through consistent cleanings around the house and taking proper care of their health and coat.
Adopting a dog comes with a new set of responsibilities that can change in minute ways depending on the size, breed and health status of a dog. A Basset Hound has one of the easiest temperaments, is very receptive to training and is a loyal companion to children and adults.
Do Basset Hounds smell bad?
Basset Hounds have a reputation for being a little more smelly than other breeds. This is due to their loose skin that can trap body sweat and saliva caused by their drooling. Regular baths can help to minimize this smell and keep their hair soft and healthy.
Wiping them down after exercising or even drinking can cut down on how much moisture is being retained on their body. Basset Hounds will generally maintain a “dog smell” that can be managed with baths, proper hygiene care and a healthy diet.
If the odor seems unnaturally strong or remains even after a bath, consider visiting a veterinarian for a health check-up.