Do Pomeranians Shed?

By Jane Meggitt

The lively, alert Pomeranian is among the hairiest of small dog breeds. While that 3- to 7-pound canine sports a lot of hair, he doesn't shed proportionately. That's not to imply Pomeranians don't shed, because they do. However, they're not heavy shedders and don't require excessive grooming.

Pomeranian Coat

Poms possess double coats, consisting of a shorter undercoat and a longer topcoat. The hair is more profuse around the chest, neck and shoulders, forming the classic Pomeranian ruff. Poms boast feathering on the front legs, with their rear ends heavily haired from the thighs to the hocks. The breed's hairy tail forms a plume. Male Poms usually have more abundant coats than females.

Pomerian Alopecia

Some unfortunate Pomeranians don't shed at all, because they've lost most of their hair. Alopecia X, a genetic dermatological condition affecting Nordic breeds -- including the Pomeranian -- results in gradual hair loss. Hair usually starts to fall out on the thighs and trunk, with the Pom's head and front leg hair remaining. Although there are various colloquial terms for this disorder, for Poms it's known as "black skin disease." Hair loss can start early or late in life. There is no effective cure.

Pomeranian Grooming

You can control your Pom's shedding with one or two good weekly brushings. Not only does that remove much of the hair he'd otherwise shed, but it prevents tangles and mats from forming. Give him a good bath every month or so, or treat him to a visit to the groomer. Because he has so much hair in the rear area, use blunt-edged scissors to keep hair in that region trimmed, so any fecal material is less likely to stick.

Hiding the Hair

It's likely your Pom doesn't shed much, but he is your constant companion and probably spends a lot of his time in your arms or on your lap. In addition to regular grooming and vacuuming, you can camouflage those stray Pom hairs by choosing a Pom-neutral wardrobe. Since the Pomeranian breed standard permits many colors, consider your own wardrobe color tastes when picking a puppy. For example, if basic black is your signature shade, getting a light-colored Pom may not be the best idea. Just be prepared for having the "wrong" color Pom melt your heart.