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How do I maintain my dog and cat’s coat ?

27 April 2022

A beautiful coat is a sign of good health! Regularly caring for your dog’s coat has a real impact on his coat, of course, but also on his health. Coat care varies according to the breed and therefore the type of coat: long, short, hard, soft…


The primary function of brushing is to detangle the coat, which is especially important for long-haired dogs. Untangling the hair prevents the dog from getting tangles that could impede its movements. It is important to adapt the brushes to your dog’s coat in order to prevent your dog from having a bad time. For example: brushing a sensitive area with an unsuitable brush can lead to skin irritation. To make brushing easier and more pleasant for your dog, you can use a detangler.  This will be much easier and, above all, faster. Brushing also helps to aerate the skin by removing dead hairs and thus promoting regrowth. It also helps to prevent certain skin diseases.

The hair falls out more abundantly in the spring and autumn during the moult. To learn more about moulting, please see our article.


Shampooing your dog also allows you to take care of his coat. It is very good for the maintenance of the coat, but also indispensable for its hygiene. The pH of a dog’s skin is very different from that of humans (see the article in this e-Mag entitled “Why choose shampoos specifically formulated for dogs and cats ? – MP Labo“). As with brushing, it is important to use products that are adapted to the dog’s coat, but also to his skin. The shampoo ranges are very wide and can be adapted to all skin types. There are moisturising shampoos, gentler shampoos for sensitive skin, and even soothing shampoos. Even with a suitable shampoo, bathing should not be too frequent. This can damage and dry out the skin. Depending on the breed, baths can be more frequent. A dog with longer hair may need to be bathed more regularly.



The groomer

It is also possible to take your dog to the groomer. As for the regularity, it all depends on you and especially on how long the hair grows back. For dogs that need to have their hair cut, you can take them to the groomer every 2 months or so. The groomer will adapt the dog’s haircut according to the season.


Did you know?

Some breeds, such as the Poodle or the Shi-tzu, have a continuous growth of the coat and therefore shed little. It is therefore necessary to groom them regularly.



Finally, it is important to mention that diet plays a very important role in the quality of the coat. If the diet is not rich enough and/or not well adapted, it can cause more hair loss and also a degradation of the hair which will dry out and become dull. To avoid these problems, it is best to eat a quality diet. Foods rich in omega-3 and 6, rich in proteins and balanced in vitamins are recommended.

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The importance of diet for skin and coat quality in dogs and cats

The importance of diet for skin and coat quality in dogs and cats

The skin is the body's largest organ, representing between 12% and 24% of the animal's weight, and its surface area in a dog weighing around thirty kilograms is close to one square meter. It's hardly surprising, then, that the quality and quantity of the dog's diet can have an impact on this organ, and in the event of a deficiency can lead to problems that go far beyond a simple visual appearance.  

Key nutrients for healthy skin and coat

Among the macro-nutrients, proteins play a crucial role. They provide amino acids, including sulphur amino acids, which are essential for the structure of the skin and coat. These are the main components of collagen, which gives the skin its suppleness and resistance, and of keratin, which plays a part in the effectiveness of the skin barrier. Lipids are also important; they make up the bulk of cell membranes and, in the skin, contribute significantly to the effectiveness of the cutaneous barrier. Among lipids, omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids help maintain healthy skin, modulate inflammatory mechanisms and promote a shiny, soft coat.  Vitamins and minerals are also involved. Vitamin A is necessary for cell renewal, as is vitamin D, which also plays a part in the skin's natural defences. Vitamin E acts as an antioxidant, while B vitamins and biotin are essential co-factors in the synthesis of various skin elements such as ceramides, keratin and collagen. Among the minerals, zinc is involved in synthesis, protection against free radicals and immune defence mechanisms.    

Disorders linked to inadequate nutrition

Inadequate or poor-quality food can lead to skin problems in our pets. A deficiency in essential fatty acids leads to dry, flaky skin, a dull coat and brittle hair. When it's the vitamins and minerals that are in short supply, synthesis is affected, the skin barrier can be less effective and the breeding ground for infections and inflammations that can lead to itching. On the other hand, these nutritional benefits can be used to compensate for individual sensitivities and improve the quality of the skin and coat in the event of dermatological disorders or diseases.    


The quality of a dog's skin and the beauty of its coat are directly influenced by the quality of its diet. However, some dogs and cats have increased needs, and it is therefore necessary to provide them with greater quantities of useful nutrients. This is particularly true in the case of certain dermatological disorders, to help compensate for imbalances and accompany the medical treatments prescribed by your vet. 

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