Today I had an ah-ha moment. We were sitting at the lunch table while at work and I was talking about Ryder. I happen to work with many animal loving coworkers. I was telling them how he's been shedding like a freak show. How I was trying Cod Liver oil to see if it helped. Someone asked if he always was a heavy shedder. I explained it was only since summer that I really noticed. I can fill buckets with his hair when I brush him. And I brush him weekly. We discussed various options for heavy shredders.
When suddenly one of my coworkers piped up. Stress. It's stress. Look at all the changes in his little world. I began to connect the dots. 1) struggling with training while working stock, not wanting to work 2) becoming naughty: ignoring his name, leaving the yard, bratty leash manners 3) shedding like a fool 4) almost daily diarrhea 5) licking everything in sight including himself. I did a quick Google search. Viola! Dog stress results... Lined up.
It seems that my dog is stressed according to my unofficial diagnosis. I want to try some herbal solutions first before seeking vet solutions. Fingers crossed for my Ryder boy.