24 Non-Shedding Dogs (Because You’re Allergic but Desperate for a Pet)
According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, around 30 percent of people in the United States are allergic to dogs. While it's easy to attribute runny noses, itchy eyes, and sneezes to dog hair, it is actually the stuff that dog hair collects that causes allergic reactions. Think: flakes of skin (dead skin cells), urine, saliva and pollen. While dogs shed their hair, these items linger in and around the house. For this reason, non-shed and hypoallergenic dog breeds are popular with people who are allergic to canines but love them too much to stay away. In addition, the New York Times reported in several studies that children who live in homes with pets generally have fewer allergies than adults. Just some food for thought.
Do not shed vs. hypoallergenic
The "non-shedding" label is a bit of a misnomer. All dogs shed a bit. Non-shed races simply shed less. This doesn't mean you won't find dog hair in your home, but anyone who doesn't want to constantly vacuum or find dog hair literally everywhere should consider a non-shed breed. Of course, less hair also means less dander.
Hypoallergenic means that the breed's coat doesn't collect as many allergens. When the dog sheds, fewer particles of dander or saliva will be dispersed into the air. Unfortunately, there is no magical breed of dog that is 100 percent hypoallergenic.
Interestingly, the VCA Ark Animal Hospital says that it is possible that a person's immune system can handle one animal but not another. This means that two different poodles can cause different reactions in a person.
Breeds that fall into the non-dandruff and hypoallergenic categories are less likely to cause reactions in people known to be allergic to dogs. Many of these breeds have long hair, wiry hair, or almost no hair. Always remember that every person and dog is different. You may need to meet a few before you find "the one". Until then, start here!
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The American Kennel Club lets us know that this breed is pronounced "Show-Low-Eats-QUEEN-Tlee". There are three different sizes to choose from: toy, miniature and standard. Xolos have been around for nearly 3,000 years, and the hairless strains have no hair at all, just skin. Unlike some of the other hairless breeds on our list, the Xolo's skin is tough and tight fitting.
2. Chinese Crested
Yes, these tiny creatures look like something from Star Wars, but they are very loving and can live up to 18 years (hello, lifelong companion!). Hairless Chinese Ccested puppies are accented with small strands of hair on the head, tail, and feet, but covered with smooth skin everywhere else. All hairless dog owners should be provided with dog-friendly sunscreen in the summer and warm puppy jackets in the winter.
These dogs have very short coats and are often compared to cats for their propensity to groom themselves. What they lack in allergens, they make up for in energy - get ready to exercise frequently.
4. Peruvian Inca orchid
Another hairless pup, the Peruvian Inca orchid, comes in gorgeous colors like golden brown, pink and white, and speckled. Like the Crested Chinese, these unique dogs have tiny tufts of hair on their heads, almost like miniature mohawks.
5. American Hairless Terrier
Surprise! Another hairless breed on our list, although this dog does not have tufts of hair anywhere. The AKC notes that its skin is warm and soft to the touch. So do anything with cuddling.
6. Bedlington Terrier
Do not shed
While the Bedlington Terrier's tightly curled fur doesn't shed, it grows pretty quickly and requires a nice haircut every month. That being said, these dogs have friendly attitudes and are great pets for families.
7. Kerry Blue Terrier
Do not shed
Are you looking for a stunning slate blue coat that won't leave marks everywhere? Say hello to the Kerry Blue Terrier. These pups require routine haircuts and regular brushing (you don't want that gorgeous bluish gray fur to get tangled) but they do minimal damage to the shed department.
8. Soft-coated wheat terrier
Do not shed
Replace the Kerry Blue Terrier's curly blue hair with wavy golden locks and you have another terrier from Ireland who won't shed. His silky coat - including those adorable bangs - needs frequent brushing.
9. Yorkshire Terrier
Ah, Yorkies. The hair of these tiny, vivacious animals looks more like human hair than dog fur. If you let it grow for a long time, better combing it every day and giving them a topknot.
10. Border Terrier
Do you notice a trend here? Terriers are known to have wiry coats that make them ideal hypoallergenic and low-dandruff options. The Border Terrier is double-coated, which means there is wiry hair on top and soft fur underneath. Get ready for lots of brushing in summer but minimal allergens all year round.
11. Spanish water dog
At first glance, this breed may seem like an allergy sufferer's worst nightmare. The corded curls, however, rarely shed and should not be brushed. Routine cuts are all you need to keep these puppies groomed.
12. Portuguese water dog
Similar to the Spanish water dog, the Portuguese has swimming curls. Dandruff is more common (especially when the weather warms), but the coat is hypoallergenic and can be shortened to about an inch.
13. Irish Water Spaniel
If an 80s headband were a dog, it could be the Irish water spaniel (the Afghan dog below). Check out this furry head - full of hypoallergenic hair! The coat is also waterproof.
With the Havanese we begin our journey into the area of the "small, white, hypoallergenic dog". There are a lot of choices, like this little bastard who is energetic, silky smooth and doesn't bark a lot.
Similar to the Havanese, Maltese coats can be very long or cut short. It is entirely up to you. If you choose long, you should brush daily to avoid growling.
16. Bichon Frize
Delightful family members, Bichon Frises are like bouncing, hypoallergenic marshmallows. You don't lose much either. Brush and bathe often!
17. Coton De Tulear
Coton is the French word for cotton and it should tell you everything you need to know about how soft these puppies are. It is recommended that you use a good quality dog conditioner when brushing a long Coton de Tulear coat.
18. Shih Tzu
The Shih Tzu is often - surprisingly - referred to as the "lion dog" and is a ball of affection. As with the other tiny titans on our list, having a long coat requires consistent grooming. Short trimming works well too.
19. West Highland White Terrier
Westies are perfect for people who need a hypoallergenic breed that always looks like they're smiling. They are independent, ready for anything, and fairly easy to maintain.
Miniature, Standard, and Giant Schnauzers are hypoallergenic dogs with little dandruff. Like Border Terriers, Schnauzers are double-coated and therefore may need additional brushing.
21. Afghan dog
Talk about a show stopper. The fur of the Afghans is luxurious and long. Be ready to brush and wash a ton - especially since these dogs love to frolic outside.
Miniature, toy, and standard poodles are some of the smartest canines around. These are great dogs for anyone who loves adventure, courage, and allergies.
Star Wars character, take two. The Affenpinscher is an adorable little puppy with a coarse coat that is slow growing. Cut the occasional cut and be ready to be bossed around a bit - these dogs know what they want.
24. Italian Greyhound
Note: Ordinary greyhounds are not hypoallergenic. Italian greyhounds have short, slim coats. Wrap them up when it gets cold outside as they have almost no body fat.
RELATED: The Best Dogs for Older People
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