Help! My Dog’s Hair Won’t Grow Back!

The hair of a dog is a live, breathing component of their body. In order for it to flourish, just like the rest of the body, it need sustenance, nutrition, and care. If there is anything wrong with your dog’s body, it will show up not only in the state of the hair but also in the condition of the coat.

If you have noticed that your dog’s hair is not coming back and you are concerned about it, you should know that you are not alone. This problem affects a lot of dogs and their owners. After your dog has been groomed, in particular, you will see this more clearly. This does not mean that it will occur each and every time or even ever; in fact, it may never take place or you may never be aware of it happening.

The process of shedding, which is a normal phase during which dogs lose their hair and re-grow new hair, occurs in cycles for dogs. During the peak of their shedding cycle, rather than growing hair, they experience hair loss. Some dogs only add new hair to their coats twice a year, and each time this event takes place, it is preceded by the dog shedding its old hairs at the beginning of the summer and again at the beginning of the winter.

If your dog is shaved you will obviously not notice the loss of hair as the coat is short.  It is when the coat doesn’t grow back that you notice it. Only the undercoat of your dog will re-grow and you will be able to tell it apart by the feel of the hair.  The undercoat is a much softer smoother, almost fuzzy feeling hair whilst the upper layer is a thicker harder hair.

Your dog can have problems with the re-growth of their hair for a few different reasons.  These include when they are ill, they have hypothyroid problems, when they have a hormonal imbalance, when they have recently had puppies, if they have malnutrition, or when they are becoming old.

Genetics: Double Coated Breeds

Some breeds should never be cut as the hair does not ever grow back the same again.  This includes dogs like German shepherd and all husky breeds, pomerians and Golden Retrievers.  If you have one of these dogs and had the coat shaved, you can safely assume that it is because of the breed that the hair does not grow back right.

If you cut one of these dogs you can be lucky and have the coat grow back with no problems, but there is no telling how much “abuse” the hair can take before it refuses to grow back properly. If your dog has any hereditary link to any of these breeds, meaning somewhere in the bloodline there is a cross with these breeds; this could also be the reason of hair not growing back after a shave.

Poor Diet

You can make use of supplements

Like we mentioned before, a poor diet can lead to unhealthy coat.  Make sure you are feeding all the nutrients your dog needs for a healthy shiny coat.  You can add a supplement containing Omega-3 fatty acids and vitamins (such as Vitamin C). This will aid in the re-growth of your dog’s hair.


As it happens with us humans, it happens that as dogs age their metabolisms slow down.  This means that everything takes longer.  This includes the growth of hair.  If your dog is older, problems can start to show with the re-growth of hair. There is nothing you can do and if you are sure there are no other underlying conditions, all you can do is wait it out or keep cutting the hair that does re-grow to make it less obvious.

Health problems

The more worrying health concern is hypothyroidism.  Hair loss and not re-growing is a symptom that points to problems with the thyroid gland.  A blood test is recommended and this will rule out or show any problems.  Thyroid problems are not life-threatening and can be controlled with medication that your vet will prescribe.

Hormonal Imbalances

Hormonal imbalances can also affect the hair growth of your dog. Your vet will be able to test and point out any imbalances or rule out this as a reason

Recent Illness

often people who have had a high fever will notice some months later that their hair is thinning. Having a high temperature disrupts the cycle of hair growth.  You may even have forgotten that your dog was ill and then months later when the shedding cycle starts there is less replacement hair than normal and you just don’t know why. If your dog was ill in the last couple of months, it could be a by-product that is only showing up now.

Grooming: Daily Brushing

In addition, daily brushing will increase the blood flow and help with healthy skin and coat when natural oils are released.  This will help with the re-growth of your dog’s hair.  Not in a hugely visible way, but it will help all the same.

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