Flat-Coated Retriever Shedding

Flat Coated Retriever Shedding


If you put a Golden retriever next to a Flat-Coated Opens in a new tab.retriever, you may think they are the same breed, just in different colors.

The Golden can be very light, medium, or dark gold and may also have some reddish hues in their coat along with wavy fur.

The Flat-Coated retriever has, of course, flat, long fur but their colors will be liver or black. Both have to feather on their legs.

These two dogs, both the Flat-Coated RetrieverOpens in a new tab. and the Golden retriever, may look very similar but they are in fact, two different breeds.

They share some common ground but there are also differences. The Golden retriever does shed Opens in a new tab.quite a lot but found in this post will be information on Flat-Coated retriever shedding.

You may be considering owning a Flat-CoatedOpens in a new tab. retriever, so I will answer the question, “Do Flat-Coated retrievers shed?” Also included will be Flat-Coated retriever grooming.

To check your Flat-Coated Retrievers’ health status or their DNA checks, please visit the Embark vet Opens in a new tab.website for all the help you may need.

Flat Coated Retriever Shedding
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Do Flat Coated Retrievers Shed?

Unfortunately, all of the retrieving breeds Opens in a new tab.do shed, and some more than others. The “Gold” medal winner for shedding the absolute most is the “Golden” retriever! The Curly-Coated retriever has no undercoat and this is the retriever that sheds the least.

The Labrador’s shedding is average and the Chesapeake Bay retrieverOpens in a new tab. comes in after the Lab as a little more than average at shedding. Opens in a new tab.

The Flat-Coated retriever does most certainly shed and can be considered a moderate to heavy shedder, winning the silver medal and coming in second to the Golden retriever.Opens in a new tab.

Why Do Flat-Coated Retrievers Shed Moderately to Heavily?

The Flat-Coated retriever Opens in a new tab.has a long, straight topcoat, but they also have an undercoat too, which is dense and soft for added warmth.

The Flat-Coat originated in Britain and was developed to swim right to the path of a duck hunter’s prize, retrieving it and delivering it right to the hand of the hunter.

These dogs needed a warm, insulated, and waterproof coat to keep them comfortable and dry in frigid waters.

All double-coated dogs like the Flat-Coat shed some all during the year but shed more heavily in spring and fall.

These dogs will shed their entire undercoat in spring and grow in a cooler summer coat and this will occur again in the fall to make way for a warmer, insulated winter coat. These times are often referred to as shedding season or “coat blow.”

At these two times of the year, your Flat-Coated retriever will shed heavily for about two weeks. All of the retrieving breeds have double coats and a shedding season except for the Curly-Coated retriever, with a single coat.

Do Flat Coated Retrievers Shed?
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Flat-Coated Retriever Grooming

Just as you spend time with grooming in your own life, your Flat-Coated retriever requires grooming as well. There are other aspects of grooming for a dog besides just brushing and bathing.

Beginning the grooming process as a Flat Coat puppyOpens in a new tab. will help your pup become accustomed and calm during the process.

Grooming takes some time, but if you are diligent and keep up with your pup’s daily, weekly and monthly needs, it will actually save time in the long run and won’t be as stressful.

Waiting to brush your pup until they develop mats can be painful for both your retriever and for you, not to mention time-consuming.

Below are the various areas of grooming to keep your Flat-Coated retriever looking dapper and smelling great too!

  • Brushing

Brushing your Flat-Coated retriever is necessary all year at least once or twice a week to remove dirt, keep mats at bay, eliminate loose fur and keep your retriever looking sleek and shiny. For normal brushing, use a bristle brush or a slicker brush.


During shedding season, you’ll need to step it up a bit to brush three to four times a week or even for a short time every day, which will remove all of that shedding fur as quickly as possible.

This is when you can pull out the big guns with an undercoat rake which helps to loosen and take that hair out. You can finish up with a slicker brush and wipe their topcoat with a damp cloth or pet wipe.

Pet wipes are super for quick clean-ups anytime. Brush your pup outdoors, if possible, to keep fur from accumulating indoors.

Sometimes, no matter how much you brush your Flat-Coat, mats may develop, often behind or underneath ears. In this case, a de-matting comb may help but you need to be gentle.

This hurts your pup as if you had a knot in your hair and can’t get it untangled. There are detangling sprays for dogs that may help and they work well to detangle after bathing your Flat-Coat too.


Grooming scissors are also a good investment, because you may have to resort to cutting the mat out if the fur is knotted too badly.

  • Bathing

How often you bathe your retriever depends on how dirty your pup gets from outdoor play. You sure don’t want to have a smelly retriever, and if that’s the case then it’s time for a bath!

You don’t however, want to over bathe your pup either. Your Flat-Coated retriever has oils on their skin and coat to keep skin healthy and their coat soft, shiny, and waterproof.

Bathing too often will dry out their skin and coat and may cause skin irritation and a dull dry coat in the process. Us a shampoo specially formulated for dogs, never people shampoo.

There are many natural and healthy shampoos that are good for skin and coat and smell amazing too!

Before bathing, brush your pup well, and bathing during “coat blow” is a good idea because it helps loosen and remove hair more quickly.

Since Flat-Coated retrievers are excellent swimmers and love it too, swimming during shedding season also helps to loosen the fur. Always rinse your retriever off after swimming.

  • Nails

Just as humans need to trim and file their nails, we also need to cut our retriever’s nails. Our pups need to have nails for gripping but if they are too long and sharp, this is no good if they have an itch to scratch or if you accidentally get scratched.

There are many different types of clippers specially made for a dog’s tough, thick nails. Filing afterward helps to smooth rough edges.

  • Groomer

For bathing, brushing, and nail cutting, beginning as a puppy helps them become accustomed to these and helps them to sit calmly. This, of course, is not always the case.

If bathing or trimming your large Flat-Coated retriever as an adult is too daunting of a task, enlist the services of a professional groomer, who will take care of these grooming needs smoothly and effortlessly.

Also, at veterinary appointments, the veterinarian or a veterinary technician will often trim and files nails for you.

  • Ears

When bathing your pup, be careful not to get water in their ears. Their ears do need to be cleaned and ear cleaners that are specially made for a dog’s ears to remove dirt, debris, and excess wax are available at pet stores, from your veterinarian, or online.

Instructions are on the bottle. Take note of any redness or a foul odor when cleaning ears. These could be signs of ear mites or an ear infection.

  • Eyes

Wipe your retriever’s eyes daily to remove dirt and dried crusty tears. If you notice red eyes or any off-color discharge make a visit to your pup’s veterinarian.


As you can see, there is a little more to grooming than a simple brushing. Whatever breed you choose, all of these grooming tasks are necessary jobs of the responsible pet parent.

Consistency is the key to a well-groomed retriever. It is best to do a little grooming more often and a time saver, than to wait until your poor Flat-Coat is smelly, dirty, and matted.

For a sleek, shiny, and great smelling Flat-Coated retriever, using the helpful tips above will allow more time for fun and adventure with your best pal.

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