According to the Mayo Clinic "So-called hypoallergenic cats and dogs may shed less fur than shedding types, but no breed is truly hypoallergenic." Studies suggest hypoallergenic cats and dogs can cause just as many symptoms as the regular kind, says James Seltzer, MD, a spokesperson for the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. That is because skin and saliva proteins, not just hair, trigger allergy symptoms.
See the attached slideshow for 18 dog breeds that are known for being non-shedding or low-shedding. Since each person's allergies may be slightly different, it is important to have your pet allergic family member meet your prospective new dog before bringing it home. Even with a minimal shedding dog, there are steps you can take to minimize the pet dander in your home.
- Regularly bathe and groom your dog to reduce the amount of shedding
- Regularly change the air filter on your air conditioner or heater
- If you have carpet, vacuum and steam clean frequently to limit dander buildup
- Install a HEPA air filter into your main heating/cooling system and run it at least 4 hours per day
- Teach your pet to stay off of the furniture
- Visit an allergist for medication and other medical options
The Afghan Hound is a beautiful elegant creature with long, flowing hair. Afghans are slender and tall with long fluffy ears. They require regular bathing but should not be brushed often as this can damage the hair. Afghans need gentle but firm discipline and are best with older children. They need a long walk daily.
The Yorkie is a beautiful little dog with long silky hair, a dainty beard and tufted pointed ears. Yorkies require daily brushing and regular grooming.
Poodles come in three sizes: standard, miniature, and toy. They require regular grooming to keep the long hair from growing matted. Poodles are friendly and easy to train.
Portuguese Water Dog
The Portuguese Water Dog is a muscular, medium-sized dog that loves to play and is great with children. This breed requires regular exercise to be a calm house companion. They are good watch dogs and very affectionate with family. President Obama owns two Portuguese Water Dogs: Bo and Sunny.
Despite it's long hair, the Samoyed sheds very little, making it great for people with allergies. Samoyed are always white and easy to train.
Shih Tzus are fluffy little dogs with short noses and floppy ears. They are friendly and playful. Shih Tzus require daily brushing and regular professional grooming. The coat can be worn long or trimmed short.
Schnauzers come in three sizes: giant, standard and miniature. Their wiry coat is very low shed. Schnauzers have small pointed ears and a large beard. They have short, stubby tails.
The Airedale Terrier is black and brown with a thick, wiry coat. This breed has a long muzzle and small ears with a small, short tail. Airedales require consistent discipline and can be rowdy with young children. Airedales are usually friendly with strangers and highly intelligent.
The Bichon Frise is a small, fluffy, usually white dog who is gentle and easy to train. Unlike most small dogs, the Bichon is not known for yapping. These dogs are excellent with children and other dogs. The Bichon can be difficult to housetrain and is very human-oriented. It is happiest with an owner who can spend a lot of time with it.
The Brussels Griffon is a small dog with a very short nose and small ears. The Griffon is great with other dogs and cats, though it can be difficult to housetrain. This breed needs a good pack leader and can be prone to Small Dog Syndrome if not trained properly.
The Italian Greyhound looks very much like a miniature version of a Greyhound with a very deep chest and long, slender legs. The short coat comes in many colors and is very low-shed. This breed tends to be peaceful and submissive toward people and other dogs.
The Scottish Terrier or "Scottie" is a small dog known for his large, long head and mustache. Scotties have very short legs. They are playful and full of character. Scotties need firm, consistent discipline and are not typically good with children as they will challenge any family member who does not display dominance.
The Bedlington Terrier looks like a baby lamb more than a dog. They are loving and affectionate, typically good with children. This breed can run very fast and needs to be trained to come when called. Bedlingtons get along with most dogs, however they can be very dominant despite their gentle appearance.
The Labradoodle is a cross between the Labrador Retriever and the Poodle. This breed has the playful easygoing nature of the Labrador combined with the fluffy, low-shedding coat of the Poodle. This breed requires regular grooming and bathing. These larger dogs are typically good with children.
The Maltese is a fluffy white toy breed with a single layer silky coat that requires regular grooming. Maltese tend to be gentle, affectionate and playful. This breed may be difficult to housetrain and is usually good with other dogs and cats. Maltese require consistent, firm leadership.
The Xoloitzcuintli or Mexican Hairless Dog comes in three size: standard, miniature and toy. The skin is hairless, smooth and tough. This breed may require a sweater in cold weather. The Xolo is loyal, active and very affectionate with family, including children.
The Chinese Crested Dog is small, with very large tufted ears and a long, flowing tail. This breed comes in both hairless and "powder puff" fluffy varieties. Chinese Cresteds are the most popular of the hairless breeds. Their hairless skin can be injured easily so they need to be treated with care, especially by children. This breed is playful and affectionate.
Soft-Coated Wheaten Terrier
The Soft-Coated Wheaten Terrier is a fluffy, medium-sized dog that requires regular grooming. This breed is strong, playful and loyal, a good watchdog. They are normally great with children and get along fairly well with other dogs. The breed requires a firm, consistent owner and can be puppy-like in play throughout the life span.