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How Much Do Great Pyrenees Shed? Care and Grooming Advice

Gregory Iacono

By Gregory Iacono

Closeup of young white great pyrenees dog looking up with brown eyes and person owner petting touching back

If you’re a dog owner, you already know dogs bring joy and companionship and can make your life more fun and interesting. As affectionate as they are, the Great Pyrenees is akin to a giant furball, shedding all year and even more in the spring when they lose their winter coat! If you want to learn more about the shedding habits of the Great Pyrenees, including how to keep your home from looking like a fur factory, keep reading.

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What Type of Coat Does the Great Pyrenees Have?

Great Pyrenees shed so much because they have a heavy, medium-length double coat, thick undercoat, and long top coat. The AKC rates the Great Pyrenees as a 3 out of 5 when it comes to shedding (5 being the highest level). Other sources put these magnificently fluffy dogs at a 4 out of 5, but there’s no denying that they shed year-round.

Great Pyrenees walking in dog show ring
Image Credit: KRNaturalPhoto, Shutterstock

When Do Great Pyrenees Shed the Most?

Typically, the Great Pyrenees sheds most heavily in the spring. This is when, like most dogs with a thick, double coat of fur, they “blow out” their soft undercoat so they don’t overheat in summer. This blowing out will occur twice, depending on where you live.

During these times, you’ll need to be constantly brushing your Great Pyrenees’ coat so that it doesn’t get on everything. Most professional groomers recommend brushing your Great Pyrenees outside to reduce the furry mess inside your home.

Does the White Fur Make the Situation Worse?

Although they can sometimes have gray, tan, and reddish-brown mixed in, the typical Great Pyrenees has a mostly white coat. The problem is that white fur is easy to see on almost anything. If you have dark furniture in your home, especially sofas and other upholstered pieces, you’ll see fur everywhere!

great pyrenees
Image Credit: skeeze, Pixabay

Does the Dog’s Size Affect How Much They Shed?

Another factor about the Great Pyr that affects the amount of shedding they have is the fact that they’re huge dogs! The average weight for a male Great Pyrenees usually tops 100 pounds and can reach 130 pounds, while females can reach 85 to 120 pounds.

That’s a lot of fur compared to a Beagle that only weighs between 20 and 30 pounds but has a similar shedding level. In other words, because of their extra-large size, you’ll have to deal with much more fur when grooming a Great Pyrenees.

Does the Great Pyrenees Shed in Clumps?

If you were to start losing your hair in clumps, it would make you panic and wonder what was happening. However, shedding in clumps comes with the territory for the Great Pyrenees. Oftentimes, when they blow out their winter coat, you’ll be able to grab huge handfuls of fur and pull it off their coat without harming your dog in any way.

Young woman petting one happy white great pyrenees dog outside at home porch of log cabin
Image Credit: Andriy Blokhin, Shutterstock

Do Great Pyrenees Need a Lot of Grooming to Stay Clean?

What’s fascinating about the Great Pyrenees is that their outer coat is highly resistant to dirt and tangling even though they shed frequently. Therefore, they need less grooming than other dogs with similarly long hair and thick, double coats.

Yes, you’ll be brushing your dog often out of necessity, but in terms of keeping them clean, it won’t be necessary, for example, to give your dog a regular bath. That’s good news because, as massive as they are, giving your Great Pyrenees bath is definitely a labor-intensive undertaking!

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How Can You Keep Great Pyrenees Fur from Getting on Everything?

If we’re being honest, there’s not much you can do to prevent your Great Pyrenees from shedding all over the place. However, you can use a few methods to reduce the shedding and keep your home from becoming a giant furball.

Brush Them Often

It goes without saying that you need to brush your Great Pyrenees often. However, as we mentioned earlier, it’s not necessary to keep their coat looking beautiful but to keep shedding under control. Regularly brushing your pet will remove old, dead fur before it falls out. In other words, the more you brush them, the less fur you will find in and around your home.

happy white great pyrenees dog looking up at camera with open mouth and person owner petting touching head outside at home wooden porch
Image Credit: Andriy Blokhin, Shutterstock

Use Two Types of Brushes

As we’ve seen, the great Pyrenees has a double coat of fur, with a soft undercoat and a longer, thicker overcoat. For that reason, having two brushes available to brush your pet is a good idea. The first should be a soft rubber brush to remove dead hair from their upper coat and reduce tangles.

The second brush should be heavier and have metal teeth so that it reaches the dense undercoat. By using two brushes, you can reduce the amount of shedding that goes on inside your home and prevent it from becoming a fur-filled disaster area.

Bathe Your Great Pyrenees More Often

Although you don’t need to give your Great Pyrenees a bath to keep them clean (thanks to their dirt-repelling fur), giving them a bath every 4 to 6 weeks is a good way to reduce shedding. Regular baths will also help your dog to stay more comfortable, but it shouldn’t be overdone since too many baths can dry out their sensitive skin.

It’s also notable that the average Great Pyrenees has very little problem with water and won’t put up a big struggle when you give them a bath.

Great Pyrenees dog looking sideways
Image Credit: Amanda Leek, Shutterstock

Feed Your Great Pyrenees a Healthy Diet

A dog with healthy skin and fur will naturally shed less, including the Great Pyrenees. The right diet will help your pup’s fur stay in the catagen stage, keeping it alive and healthy for longer. In short, the better you feed your Great Pyrenees, the less shedding will occur.

Keep a Lint Remover Handy

This last tip might not reduce the amount of shedding, but it will help you look presentable when you go out in public. By keeping a lint remover on hand, you’ll always be ready to remove the inevitable fur that will get on your clothing, especially darker-colored clothing.

lint remover on top of blue shirt to remove white pet fur
Image Credit: Cristina Nakamura, Shutterstock

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Should You Shave Your Great Pyrenees?

When you consider your Great Pyrenees will shed all year long, and even more once or twice a year, it might make sense to shave off their fur to reduce the constant shedding. However, veterinarians recommend never doing that since it’s unhealthy for your pet. Dogs with a double-layer coat should never be shaved because it increases the risk of skin cancer and sunburn.

Shaving your dog will also make it harder for your pet to regrow and replace their undercoat because it won’t have the protection of their topcoat. Ironically, shaving your Great Pyrenees puts them at risk of being hotter in the summertime.

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Final Thoughts

The Great Pyrenees is an affectionate and impressive canine that will make an excellent companion and protector for you and your family. However, it’s highly recommended you put a lot of thought into adopting one before you take the step because they shed frequently and require regular grooming.

We hope the information provided today has given you a better idea of how much the Great Pyrenees sheds and what you will need to do to prevent your home from turning into a fur factory. For the right owner, they are truly fantastic dogs and loyal companions!


Featured Image Credit: Andriy Blokhin, Shutterstock

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