This is a breed named for its coat, so let’s begin there. The lustrous, flat-lying coat comes in solid black or liver, with feathering at the legs and tail. Beautiful, yes, but also highly functional: it protects these superb retrievers from harsh weather, icy water, and punishing ground cover. Another breed hallmark is the long head—unique among retrievers—that projects a smart and kindly expression. Flat-Coats will stand just as tall as a Lab, but in silhouette they present a leaner, more elegant look.
Bathing Your Flat Coated Retriever: The Flat Coated Retriever has a thick double coat with two distinct shedding cycles; spring and fall. We recommend Simple Shed Shampoo, which has oat proteins to help loosen the undercoat. Follow that up with Simple Shed Treatment. After the Simple Shed Treatment is worked into the fur, use an undercoat rake and brush through the coat while the Simple Shed Treatment is still present. This will pull out the undercoat and help prevent drain clogs when bathing in a tub. If you are bathing your dog outside, it will release the coat and dramatically cut down on brush out time.
If you notice that the undercoat is matted on the hind end of the Retriever, then work in some Aloe Silk Hair Restore or spray with Quick Finish Styling Spray. This routine will help prevent hot spots and skin irritations. Between shedding cycles, shampooing may be needed since this breed loves water and may be muddy between seasons. We recommend Blueberry Bliss Shampoo for a great smell that lasts for days.
During the dry winter months, or in generally dry climates, use Aloe Hydrating Spray to hydrate and moisturize the skin and coat. For a quick bath in between regular “full baths”, use Oatmeal Baking Soda Waterless Bath. Simply spray on and wipe with a towel for a quick cleaning.
Our High Sheen Finishing Spray will keep that shiny glossy look this breed is known for. For added fragrance and conditioning, use one of Espree’s fragrant leave-in conditioning colognes and match it up with a similar smelling shampoo.
For monthly ear cleaning, use Espree Ear Care. If weekly care is needed for an existing chronic ear condition, use Espree Ear Care Aloe Wipes. This routine will help keep any ear problems at bay. Remember, never clean further than you can see inside the ear.
Opti-Soothe Eye Wash can be used to help flush foreign matter, such as leftover shampoo, as well as help rinse common eye allergens while soothing any irritation.
Coat and Skin: Hot spots are a common problem for this breed, especially during the summer months. To prevent them, you must remove the dead undercoat, so the air can get down to the skin. If moisture is trapped in the coat, hot spots are possible. Our Hot Spot Foam is a very effective treatment for this condition.
Fleas and ticks are also a common problem for these athletic and active dogs. Our Flea and Tick Shampoo is fantastic and loved by groomers, while the Flea and Tick Pet Spray keeps them away for up to twelve days. There is also the Flea and Tick Repellent Wipes for convenience between baths and outdoor activities.
Thyroid problems are also a known to afflict this breed. If excess dandruff or flakes are prominent, then use Dead Sea Mineral Mud Bath to exfoliate and hydrate the skin.
Skin abrasions and bug bites can occur while your dog is running and exploring outside. Keep 3 in 1 Healing Cream and Bug Bite Relief on hand for when those accidents happen.