Do Boston Terriers Shed? How Can I Reduce It?

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by Lily Ferreras


A short coat doesn’t always equal to minimal shedding. I discovered this whilst fostering Tootsie, a pug, who is short-haired and sheds hair 357 days a year! So, I decided to get this fact straight before fostering my first Boston Terrier.

Do Boston Terriers shed? Boston Bull Terriers shed minimally during the year. They have a short coat that requires low grooming and they shed the most twice a year, during the fall and spring.

But that’s not all, apart from knowing what to expect from your American gentleman’s shedding, let’s see how to reduce it too!

Do Boston Terriers Shed?

In comparison to other dog breeds, Boston Terriers shed minimally.

BreedAmount of Shedding
Boston TerrierLow
French BulldogModerate
American Pit Bull TerrierHigh
PugVery High

Boston Terrier Shedding Comparison To Some Other Dog Breeds

Boston Terrier’s shedding helps them to remove dead hair and it doesn’t happen all year around. They mostly shed twice a year, during the fall and spring.

Actually, Boston Terriers are one of the dog breeds that shed very little hair. In this category also falls a lot of other Terriers, such as:

  • Tibetan Terrier.
  • Maltese Terrier.
  • West Highland White Terrier.
  • Scottish Terrier.
  • Yorkshire Terrier.
  • Border Terrier.

… and the list goes on. Plus, all of these breeds have long hair!

So, please feel free to ignore the assumption that “more hair equals more shedding.” 🙂

Depending on your previous experience with dogs, it might be difficult to visualize how shedding can affect you. However, the big takeaway is that terrier owners don’t find shedding as a major issue.

Why Boston Terriers Don’t Shed Much?

The reason why Boston Terriers don’t shed much hair is that they have a short single coat.

Shedding is a natural way of removing dead hair, which allows a new coat to come in for seasonal changes in temperature.

Also, since they mostly live indoors, they are being shielded from extreme temperatures. This means that their natural body regulation don’t get thrown off balance, i.e., mostly only big changes of temperature triggers their shedding mechanism.

So, when your Boston Bull goes outside, his body registers a change in the temperature and he will continue to shed. This is why this breed can minimally shed all year long but then shed mostly when the seasons’ change (fall and spring), due to the drastic change in temperature.


How to Reduce Shedding

For most dog parents, regardless of our dog’s breed, this is when it gets interesting! Raising the question:

What can I do to reduce excessive shedding?

Knowing that most of us have a busy lifestyle, I have three recommendations that don’t require much of your time to accomplish:

  • Weekly grooming.
  • Follow a balanced diet.
  • Keep stress low.

#1 – Weekly Grooming

Its simple to start, just cover one of your dog’s basic needs: regular grooming.

Thanks to their short coat, your Boston Terrier requires low grooming. However, your pooch needs to be groomed to get rid of the excessive dead hair on his coat.

Every time I am grooming a short-haired dog, like Boston Bull Terriers, I use a rubber brush (Amazon link) once a week. It fits in your hand and you can groom your pooch as you were petting him, i.e., using the same motion. Plus, dogs find it relaxing because it feels more like a massage than a grooming session!

Insider Tip: Introduce grooming as soon as possible, but get your pooch used to it gradually. If you want your dog to love this activity, take it easy, only do a bit at the time and reward your pooch each time after grooming!

Brushing your dog will also help you to keep an eye on parasites like fleas, lice, mites and ticks, which cause skin problems and more severe issues too.

Another advantage of the Boston Bull is that they don’t need regular bathing unless they get very dirty or they start to smell. Plus, overbathing your pooch can cause skin irritation and actually make things worse!

P.S. Want to step-up your dog grooming routine? 😉 Check out How to Groom a Boston Terrier blog post (the picture below should convince you).


#2 – Balanced Diet

Whether you buy your dog food or make it yourself, your pup needs a balanced diet which is species-appropriate to stay healthy inside and outside.

Fatty acids, such as omega-3 and omega-6, are essential for a healthy coat, and they can control shedding. Also, your American gentleman needs to be well hydrated, which is essential for good skin and a healthy coat.

So, what does a healthy, species-appropriate diet look like?

Apart from providing your pooch with plenty of fresh water, a dog diet should include:

  • High-quality protein – muscle meat, not pieces or parts.
  • Moderate level of animal fat.
  • High levels of EPA and DHA (omega-3s).
  • High moisture content.
  • A few fresh cut veggies (mimics prey’s stomach contents).
  • No grains.
  • No potatoes or other starches.

When buying commercial food, watch out for fillers like grains and starches and go for high protein and healthy fat options instead.

When trying different dog food, see if you notice any difference in your Boston Bull Terrier’s shedding pattern. You can also use natural supplements for dogs, for instance, krill oil capsules, which have omega-3 fatty acids.

As you can see, feeding your Boston Terrier the appropriate way is definitely a factor in shedding. For this, I recommend heading over to What Do Boston Terrier Eat? blog post for more details.

#3 – Low Stress

High-stress levels in dogs can cause excessive shedding.

So, if your American Gentleman is shedding more than usual, he might be under stress.

There are many changes and situations that can cause stress. Some common triggers include:

  • Novelty: Exposure to new items, new people or new animals, especially when they haven’t been socialized.
  • Boredom: Lack of mental stimulation like playtime, exercise, and training.
  • Loud noises: Fireworks, thunderstorms, heavy wind, etc.
  • Sudden changes: In the house/environment, household members or daily routine.
  • Punitive training methods: Shock collars, yelling, hitting, etc.
  • Separation anxiety: Staying at home alone for long hours.
  • Trauma: A loss of a fellow pet or owner.

Read also: Boston Terrier Separation Anxiety – 16 Things that Help and Boston Terrier Fears and Anxiety – Triggers and Remedies blog posts.

Finally, as a preventive measure, visit your vet for an assessment, so you can rule out any serious health problem that might be causing the excess shedding in your Boston Terrier.


#Bonus – Pet Graded Vacuum Cleaner

Well, this is more for your own shake that your dog’s! But it makes a huge difference 😉

When you have a dog, it’s best to assume that you will need to clean on a regular basis – for me, that translates to at least once a week (I’m a busy woman and I don’t exactly jump for joy when it comes to cleaning – not my thing!)

A vacuum cleaner for pets (like Dyson Animal) is the best way to pick up pet hair, dander, and dirt from the floor and furniture.

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