A characteristic feature of our dogs is that the period of adulthood in their lives lasts a very long time. Dogs very late become dog seniors. However, when the time comes, one of the signs that your dog is entering this phase of its life is the fact that the pooch’s coat is turning grey.
Of course, this is not the only sign that our four-legged friend is becoming a senior dog. Nevertheless, in this post I want to tell you why your dog’s coat is turning grey and what it really means.
It’s important to know that the greying of your dog’s coat is not always directly connected with his advanced age. Sometimes, life situations that your pet experiences cause he’s body to change under the influence of emotions.
As a dog guardian, it is therefore good for you to know what your dog’s greying hair is related to and whether you have any real influence on it.
There’s no denying that by far, the most common reason for your dog’s coat turning grey is age. Just as with humans, when a dog reaches a certain age his coat starts to turn white or grey. This usually happens when the dog is about ten years old.
Where do the first signs of ageing appear on your four-legged friend’s body? First of all, we can usually see the first grey strands of a dog’s coat near his muzzle or around his eyes. This is where the coat changes colour the fastest.
Single grey strands can also appear on the rest of the dog’s body, but with less intensity. It is worth mentioning that grey dogs are unlikely to go grey completely. It’s very unlikely that your dog’s coat will turn completely grey. I think this is quite interesting considering how the greying process goes with humans.
What’s more, it’s worth mentioning that the greying of our dogs does not have a direct impact on their health and fitness. Very often the dog in spite of grey hair still has a lot of vigor.
So if your pet is starting to turn grey as it enters its late years, this is perfectly normal and shouldn’t cause you any distress. When it comes to senior dogs, grey hair is a natural occurrence, so you do not need worry about your pet in any way.
Unfortunately, there are situations in which your dog’s grey coat is a sign of a serious problem. An example of this is stress, which can cause the appearance of grey hair.
Of course, we are talking here primarily about dogs that unfortunately in their lives have experienced a lot of pain and fear. Constant anxiety can be the cause of premature greying of hair. It is a common phenomenon seen especially at dogs that were brought to the shelter after being rescued from a home where they had had a very difficult life.
Unfortunately, this is an irreversible process. If such a dog finds itself in the hands of a loving family, its coat will not return from grey to his original colour, even if the pet is still very young.
It can happen that your dog’s coat starts to turn grey because of deficiencies in his body. A poor diet that does not provide your dog with all the necessary vitamins and minerals can be the cause of this situation.
So if you notice your dog’s coat turning grey far too early considering the age it is, let this be a signal to you. This is how your dog’s body reacts to health problems.
Often, the reason for the occurrence of grey hair is feeding it too little meat. Very often, dog guardians attach great importance to a healthy diet for their pet, introducing plenty of vegetables and fruit. Unfortunately, their good intentions are sometimes misplaced, as they give their dog not enough meat.
If you want to know what a healthy and well-balanced diet for your pet should look like, I refer you to the entry dedicated to this topic. You can find it HERE.
If, apart from premature greying of hair, you notice other disturbing symptoms in your dog, such as lack of appetite or general weakness, visit your vet for a check-up. A grey coat may also be a symptom of some disease in your dog.
It’s not often that your dog’s body reacts in this way to an illness, but if your dog is really young, you might want to consult a specialist.
If your pooch has suddenly started to turn grey prematurely, it is essential to consult your vet. It may be influenced by the deficiencies I mentioned earlier or an illness.
When your dog has a grey coat due to stress and traumatic experiences, all we can do is try to show it love and support. We can’t turn back the clock, but we can make sure your dog leads a happy life under your care. Make sure that such a dog is completely comfortable and secure in your home.
It is very important to create an asylum in your home, a safe zone for the dog after his transition. The comfortable dog bed fulfils this function perfectly. It will provide your dog with maximum comfort while he sleeps, and during the day it will be a great vantage point.
When you are dealing with a senior dog, a grey coat is the natural course of things. You have no control over the effects of time. Remember that senior dogs require specialised care. You need to pay more attention to your senior dog’s diet, as well as its condition and well-being.
Caring for your dog’s coat looks the same whether or not grey strands have appeared on it. Regular washing and brushing is essential. This also applies to regular visits to the groomer with dogs with hair that needs constant trimming.
However, if you want to take more care of your dog’s greying coat, you can give him special supplements. These are designed to strengthen your pet’s hair and make it shine.
Ask your vet for advice on what ingredients and minerals work the best for your dog’s coat. Different supplements will work for dogs with long hair and others, for those with short, rough hair.
In my opinion, grey strands of hair give dogs even more character and a unique look. I think our pets look adorable then and it does not, in any way, detract from their beauty.
A dog’s coat turns grey for several reasons. If your dog’s coat is going grey because of age, then this is only natural. You need to prepare yourself for the fact that you now have a senior dog under your care. This is a very responsible task for any dog carer.
When did you notice that your pooch’s coat started to turn grey? Or is that moment still ahead of you and you are wondering how to prepare for it? Share your experience with me in the comments section below.