How to Remove Stains from White Dog Fur
Dogs, like other mammals, have hair follicles embedded under their skin. Hair follicles are the minuscule holes where hair takes root and grows. Because of this covering, dogs can keep themselves warm without the help of clothing.
How does it get stained?
Because of a dog’s active lifestyle, their fur, especially light colored ones, can get stained easily. This could be from the environment they run around in. Thus, it is the owner’s responsibility to look after his or her dog’s personal hygiene.
Aside from the dirt and debris that the dog’s fur might get whilst playing outside, fur stains can also be caused by saliva and/or tears. Tear stains frequently happen, especially to small dogs because of their narrow tear ducts. The substances these ducts secrete harden at the sides of the eye and can be difficult to remove.
A dog’s fur can be difficult to maintain, especially if it is white and longer in length. But, fret not! In this article, we will provide you with basic tips on how to remove stains on their coat easily.
Steps on how to remove fur stains
Step 1: Check under their fur for any wounded or inflamed areas.
Cleansers made for dogs can be made up of harsh chemicals that can seep into open wounds and go directly to their bloodstream. This may lead to illness. Also, these wounds can serve as a symptom or another issue, and that your dog needs to be taken to the veterinarian.
Step 2: Examine the stains and what caused them.
Some stains have to be treated with special care. For example, dirt stains can be removed from the white fur with ordinary dog shampoo and warm water, while tear stains, especially if accompanied with irritated eyes, need to be removed by the vet in order to examine if said stains are an indication of a disease.
Step 3: Depending on the stain source, wash and lather up your dog with a shampoo that would remove the stain.
Urine and fecal stains should be dealt with either an enzymatic or clarifying shampoo. Enzymatic shampoos remove stains that are made up of proteins, like saliva, tears, and blood. And because white fur is made up of keratin, which is a protein, it also whitens your dog’s coat.
Clarifying shampoos have the same effect as enzymatic ones, with the additional benefit of removing hardened dirt stuck under your dog’s paw like clay and soil.
However, these products may contain harsh chemicals. It must not be used frequently. But if you do, it must immediately be followed by a hypoallergenic conditioner to keep their fur from drying out.
In washing and lathering your dog, avoid the sensitive areas, specifically the eyes, ears, and mouth. Give the tail, muzzle, lower body area and the paws extra attention since these are the ones most prone to dirt. Let the lather stay up to five minutes, and do not leave your dog until the time is up.
Step 4: Rinse with warm water.
Make sure that the water is not too hot. If you can, test it out with your elbow first—using hot water can injure your pet’s sensitive skin. While rinsing, run your fingers through each hair section to make sure that no excess shampoo is trapped in the strands.
Step 5: Apply conditioner.
Conditioners are meant to nourish and lock in moisture inside the hair cells. This would add shine to the locks and protects the white fur from additional stains. Rinse again with warm water, then dry your dog with a towel using dabbing motions.
Step 6: Brush white dog fur with a brush suitable for its hair type.
Pin brushes, as shown below, is ideal for dogs whose hair are long and thick, while the slicker one (shown on the right) is for those who have more delicate and more sensitive hair. Brush the fur to the direction of the hair growth to reduce falling hair and tangles.
Maintaining White Fur White
The steps mentioned above are made only for cleaning purposes. As for maintenance, it is a different (and more tedious) matter.
White fur is in itself difficult to maintain. For one, stains on the fur coat are easily seen and can be distracting to the dog’s appearance. Thankfully, manufacturers are able to provide products that could keep white fur coats pristine.
Below are some things you can apply to maintain the whiteness of your dog’s fur:
● Bleaching Shampoo
Its main ingredient is hydrogen peroxide which is great for removing yellow stains. However, it can be harsh to the skin, and must, therefore, be used in moderation.
However, if you cannot afford it, a bleaching paste can be made at home using 10-20% hydrogen peroxide and cornstarch, with the option of adding milk of magnesia. It must only be applied to areas that have yellow marks caused by stains and must be done before applying shampoo on the dog. The paste must remain on the problem area for up to 15 minutes before rinsing with warm water.
● Bluing shampoo
This type of shampoo relies on optical illusion to make your dog’s white fur look white in appearance. Applying it can be trickier than other shampoos, so extra attention is needed to avoid turning the white fur into blue. It must be lathered and massaged into the fur coat until the lather turns white. After, rinse it off with warm water.
● Changes in lifestyle
Some stains, specifically those that are red or brown, is caused by either the diet or an underlying infection. In both cases, the owner must bring his or her dog to the veterinarian to find out the root cause and to decide on the treatment.
Sure, maintaining white fur can be difficult, but it’s simply part of our responsibility as dog owners. At the end of the day, the benefits of having loyal companionship from our canine friends far outweigh the responsibilities it may entail.