"Spring is in the air...so is the HAIR"
"Spring is in the air"...and so is the HAIR!
If you have a Great Pyr then you can relate.
Last year it started in April; this year its mid May. Perhaps the mild weather was responsible for the reprieve; but it's now the second last week of May and my wood floors are dotted with white "cotton balls" of Pyr fur. And it is only going to get WORSE!
Nana (Grandma) loves our female Great Pyrenees Frank, but just cannot deal with the bi-annual "shed-fest". Nana is now following Frank around with the broom muttering expletives under her breath and complaining bitterly. "I just swept that up! Now there are more clumps everywhere! And just LOOK at my slippers! They are covered! Can't you get this dog shaved?!"
When Nana gets on a roll, she can go on forever. I have to hide my grin, keep my head down and my mouth shut.
Nana and I play scrabble almost every night, and Frank likes to lie down on the floor next to us during our games. Last night Nana couldn't resist the temptation to "fur pick". While I was considering where to place my tiles, Nana leaned down and started picking the clumps of fur off Frank. Not surprisingly, the dog LOVED it, and rolled around exposing herself shamefully so Nana could get all the tufts that were ripe for selection.
Half way through our game Nana had filled a plastic grocery bag with white fluff and held it up triumphantly. "Now, look at THAT! This would all be on the floor by tomorrow! It's enough to make a new dog for pity's sake!" Then she looked at me sternly and said the same thing she has said for the past 3 years; "Why didn't you get a poodle, Martha? I mean really. Would it have killed you to get a poodle?"
Nana has a point. Great Pyrs blow their coat with gusto twice a year. The spring shed-fest is about a 3 week showcase event, with the fall "cast off" paling in comparison. Even with regular brushing and in my case "vacuuming", you still get dust bunnies the size of grizzly bears.
Shedding season is never fun, but I try to manage it somewhat. I have a filter queen vacuum from 1969 that has proved invaluable during shed-fest. I also have a dog who loves to be vacuumed and brushed. The problem is that you just cannot get ALL the hair. For a couple of weeks you find it EVERYWHERE... along the baseboards of the floor, on the staircase runner, on your clothes, in the backyard, on the deck, in the car, in the laundry, in your shoes, in the pantry, vents, ducts and sometimes just floating in the air. It's an inevitable certainty that if you have a Pyr you will have to deal with extreme shedding at least once a year.
Frank is my first Pyr and I find that outside of shedding season, she does not lose fur. This may be attributed in part, to her diet which includes the EFA's safflower and salmon oil. I find that she keeps her thick winter coat from November right through to spring with very little coming out during brushing. I also find that the summer fur is longer and finer and seldom sheds. I find it very easy to maintain in comparison. So, in contrast to a dog that sheds constantly, I can accept and do the extra work involved when Frank blows her coat each spring and fall.
Nana, however, is quite another issue! She goes insane during shedding seasons... luckily she has a houseful of grandchildren that she can follow around with the broom for the rest of the year!