Why Do Dogs Lose Hair On Their Back?


One of the many signs of a healthy dog is that they have a vibrant coat of hair with no bald patches. 

But what should you do if your dog does have bald patches or areas of their body where their coat is thinning?

In today’s article, I want to look at hair loss on a specific part of a dog- their backs.

Here is what you will learn from reading this article:

  1. Dogs lose hair naturally
  2. Dogs lose hair because of flea bites
  3. Why do dogs lose hair on their backs?
  4. But why do fleas live on a dog’s back? 
  5. Five more reasons why dogs lose hair
  6. What other areas of the body hair is most often lost?
  7. What other symptoms you might see apart from hair loss?
  8. Any breeds that are more likely to suffer hair loss on the back?
  9. Does regular grooming help prevent hair loss? 
  10. Can natural remedies help with hair loss?
  11. Will the hair on the dog’s back grow back?

Dogs lose hair naturally

The first point that I want to make is that most dogs lose hair naturally in a process called shedding.

Now for most dogs this happens once or twice a year in the Spring and the Autumn and for other dogs, such as the Golden Retrievers that I own, it is never ending.

As my vacuum cleaner will verify. 

This seasoning shedding is also known as blowing coat because a dog loses so much hair in such a short space of time it is as if they have had a hair explosion!

These periods of shedding do not really explain why a dog would noticeably be losing hair on their back because realistically a dog should be losing hair from their back and their sides fairly evenly. 

This leads us logically to ask the next question.

What medical reasons are there for dogs to lose hair on their back?

Dogs lose hair because of flea bites

Dogs lose hair for a whole variety of reasons.

The main cause is flea allergies. 

I mean, dogs can suffer from a number of allergies (and I will talk about this in more depth later) but public enemy number one when it comes to hair loss are allergies relating to flea bites. 

As most of us know, flea bites are painful as such but they man oh man do they itch. 

And the more you scratch the more they itch. 

And it’s no different for dogs. 

And just as humans can scratch so hard that they graze or break the skin.. 

Dogs can shed hair in their eagerness to scratch. 

But why does this lead to dogs suffering from bald patches on their backs? 

Why do dogs lose hair on their backs?

There was an interesting flea surveycarried out on dogs at a vet clinic in Italy. It involved over one thousand three hundred dogs. 

Of these dogs, two hundred and forty six had fleas and the most heavily infested areas of the body was their back. 

But why do fleas live on a dog’s back?

Fleas dont only live on a dogs back but it is one of their favourite places.

And there are several reasons for this.

Firstly dogs struggle to scratch their backs and so fleas are less likely to be caught or eaten by a dog.

Have you seen the way a dog needs to contort their bodies in order to scratch their backs?

Secondly, a dogs coat tends to be thicker on its back.

And longer hair means that they can hide more easily.  

And where fleas live, they also bite.

And so the cycle begins that leads to dogs losing hair on their back. 

But fleas arent the only reason that dogs lose hair.

And in the next section, we will take a look at some others. 

Five more reasons why dogs lose hair

First reason why dogs lose hair is due to stress.

This can be caused by a variety of things, such as a move to a new home, the addition of a new pet or family member, or even something as simple as a change in routine.

If you notice your dog losing hair and think it may be due to stress, there are a few things you can do to help.

Try adding some extra cuddle time into your dog’s routine, or give them some fun toys to help them stay occupied and distracted from whatever is causing their stress.

You may also want to talk to your veterinarian about the possibility of giving your dog some calming supplements to help ease their anxiety.

Many factors can contribute to hair loss in dogs, including weather conditions.

Hot, humid weather can cause dogs to lose hair due to excessive sweating.

Dry, cold weather can also lead to hair loss, as it dries out the skin and causes the hair to break.

Other environmental factors, such as wind and sun exposure, can also damage the hair and lead to hair loss.

So if you notice your dog’s hair is thinning or falling out, pay attention to the weather conditions and see if there’s a correlation

The third common reason for hair loss in dogs is age.

As your dog gets older, his hair follicles may become weaker and produce less hair.

This can happen even if you’ve been taking good care of your dog’s coat.

The next reason for dogs’ hair loss in the back is because of diet.

If your dog isn’t getting enough nutrients, their back hairs will suffer.

Make sure you’re feeding them a high-quality food that’s packed with protein, healthy fats, and essential vitamins and minerals.

Assuming you’re uncertain about food what to give to your dog, you converse with your veterinarian.

The next and last reason why dogs might lose hair is because they suffer from allergies.

Flea bites come under this umbrellabut dogs might suffer from many other allergies. 

Many people are surprised to learn that food allergies are a common cause of hair loss in dogs. 

Very much like people, dogs can be sensitive and allergic to some specific ingredients in the food given to them. If your dog is losing hair on their back, it could be an allergic reaction to something they’re eating.

What other areas of the body hair is most often lost?

Hair loss on the back is the most common type of hair loss in dogs, but it can also occur on other parts of the body.

Other areas where hair loss is commonly seen include the legs, belly, and around the eyes.

Dogs lose hair on their ears for a variety of reasons.

Most commonly, it’s due to allergies or environmental factors.

But sometimes, it can be a sign of something more serious, like an infection or a hormonal imbalance.

If you notice your dog losing hair on their ears, it’s important to take them to the vet to rule out any underlying health problems.

If you find hair around your dog’s belly, it’s likely because they’re shedding.

This is a common area for shedding because it’s where the majority of a dog’s hair follicles are located. In fact, dogs have about 80% of their hair follicles on their underside.

So, if you’re finding hair around your dog’s belly, don’t be alarmed. It’s just their natural shedding process at work.

The hair around your dog’s eyes is usually the first place you’ll notice shedding.

This is because the hair around the eyes is typically the thinnest and most delicate.

When your dog sheds around their eyes, it’s usually a sign that they’re experiencing some sort of stress or anxiety.

What other symptoms you might see apart from hair loss?

If your dog is losing hair on their back, it’s likely they are also scratching a lot. Other symptoms may include hot spots, red skin, and bald patches. The underlying cause could be anything from allergies to parasites. 

For example, if your dog has dandruff or scabs around the area where they are shedding hair then there is an infection causing them to lose hair in that spot. Dandruff can often be caused by skin conditions like flea bites or allergic reactions which need medical attention. If parasites are suspected then anti-parasitic medication will be prescribed as well as other appropriate treatments for other ailments.

Any breeds that are more likely to suffer hair loss on the back?

Hair loss on a dog’s back can be caused by a number of things, including allergies, parasites, hormonal problems, and even stress.

Some dog breeds are more prone to hair loss than others, especially those with short coats or single coats.

Breeds that are more likely to suffer from hair loss include the:

  • American Staffordshire Terrier,
  • the Boston Terrier,
  • the Boxer,
  • the Bulldog,
  • and the Chinese Shar-Pei.

But actually, double-coated dogs are most likely to suffer because of their thick coat.

It all just really depends on the dogs breed.

If you notice your dog losing hair on its back, it’s important to take him to the vet to rule out any medical problems.

Does regular grooming help prevent hair loss?

Regular grooming can help prevent dogs’ hair loss by keeping their coat clean and free of dirt.

Grooming can also help find and get rid of fleas and other allergens that might be causing the main problem which is, hair loss.

It helps to remove dead hair and stimulate new growth. Just like people, dogs need to have their hair brushed and trimmed regularly to keep it healthy. 

Furthermore, regular grooming can stimulate blood flow to the skin and help to prevent problems such as skin infections which can lead to hair loss.

Lastly, don’t forget to give your dog plenty of love and attention – this will help keep their spirits high, reduce stress, and keep their fur healthy! 

Can natural remedies help with hair loss?

Natural remedies can also be helpful, and there are a number of different products that can be used to help improve the health of the coat.

There are a few different things you can do to help your dog’s hair grow back, and these are all natural remedies. 

First, make sure you are feeding your dog a healthy diet. This means plenty of fresh, whole foods, and no processed junk. 

Second, give your dog supplements like omega-3 fatty acids, biotin, and vitamin E. These will all help with hair growth. 

Third, use a quality shampoo and conditioner on your dog’s coat. You can also use naturals such as coconut oil or aloe vera gel, this can help to moisturize the coat and promote hair growth for dogs. 

Fourth, avoid using harsh chemicals or treatments on your dog’s coat. 

Fifth, make sure you are brushing your dog regularly to help remove dead hair and distribute natural oils through the coat.

Sixth, give your dog regular massages. 

Seventh, make sure your dog is getting enough exercise. 

All of these things will help improve circulation and promote hair growth.

Will the hair on the dog’s back grow back?

if the owner has cured the cause of the hair loss, then the hair will grow back.

However, if the owner has not cured the main cause why the hair is losing, then the hair will not grow back.

So, it is most important to find out first the root cause of the dog’s hair loss.

However, if the hair loss is due to a medical condition, then treatment will be necessary to regrow the hair. 

The most common causes of hair loss in dogs are allergies, hormone imbalances, and stress. Allergies are the most common cause of hair loss in dogs.

Hormone imbalances can be caused by many things, including but not limited to: poor diet, lack of exercise, and/or old age. 

Stress can be caused by many things, including but not limited to: separation anxiety, changes in routine, and/or loud noises.

The good news is that there are many ways to help a dog regrow their hair, including grooming and dietary supplements.

So, if your dog has lost some hair on their back, don’t despair! With a little bit of care, their coat will be looking lush and healthy in no time.

And while most breeds will have an undercoat that sheds continuously year-round (more so during shedding season), these hairs will always grow back if they are cut correctly, regularly groomed and given enough time.

James Grayston

My name is James and I love dogs. have owned four Golden Retrievers in the past 15 years. Currently I own two "Goldies"- a five year old and a seven month old. The photo shows me with our youngest when she was about 7 weeks old!