If you are a dog-loving allergy sufferer, you have probably heard about hypoallergenic dog breeds. However, while many non-shedding dog breeds are advertised as allergy-free, there’s no such thing as a 100% hypoallergenic dog!
Although this may sound like bad news, don’t panic just yet! You don’t have to give up your dream of owning a dog, you just have to find a dog breed that won’t make you sneeze!
The thing that’s causing your allergies isn’t dog hair, it’s Can f1 protein that is found in a dog’s saliva, urine, and dander. This protein clings to dog hairs and as dogs shed, it becomes airborne. The reason non-shedding dog breeds are often marketed as hypoallergenic is that they shed less hair which results in fewer Can f1 proteins in the air.
Keep on reading to find our 25 favorite low-shedding breeds for people with allergies!
25 Dog Breeds That Don’t Shed
Whether you are looking for a low-shedding dog that won’t cause allergic reactions or you don’t have time to vacuum and clean dog hair every day, we got you covered! Read on to find the perfect dog for you!
1. Bichon Frise
The small and sturdy Bichon Frise is touted as a hypoallergenic breed. These cute furballs have pure white coats that don’t shed much, though they must be groomed often.
When not brushed regularly, the Bichon’s coat can develop mats and tangles that can be very difficult to untangle. As pets, Bichons are wonderful companions that use their never-ending charm to entertain their families.
2. West Highland White Terrier
The West Highland White Terrier, also known as the Westie is another low-shedding dog breed that may be a good choice for allergy sufferers. Although small in size, these friendly and active pooches make great watchdogs that will alert you if anything seems amiss.
3. Yorkshire Terrier
Originally bred to catch rats in Yorkshire mines, the cute and spunky Yorkie soon caught the interest of Victorian ladies, and ended up becoming a beloved lapdog. The Yorkshire Terrier has a silky long coat that doesn’t shed much. This makes Yorkies suitable pets for dog-loving allergy sufferers.
4. Airedale Terrier
Nicknamed the King of Terriers, the Airedale Terrier is the largest of all terrier breeds (source). These pooches have thick curly coats that barely shed, but can easily become matter if not brushed a couple of times a week.
Airedale Terriers are smart, active, and friendly dogs that make great companions to active and outdoorsy people. If you suffer from allergies, schedule a few visits with a breeder to see whether or not the Airedale Terrier will make you sneeze.
5. Cairn Terrier
Originating in Scotland, the Cairn Terrier was bred to hunt vermin and is another member of the terrier group. These small and sturdy dogs have water-repellant and low-shedding coats that come in a variety of colors.
Smart, lively, and active, the Cairn Terrier is best suited for homes with some outdoor space. But be warned, these tiny canines like to dig and will excavate your entire flower patch!
6. Brussels Griffon
The Brussels Griffon or Griffon Bruxellois is a toy dog breed that makes a great pet to apartment dwellers. This petite canine barely sheds, but you’ll still need to brush their coat twice a week to remove dirt and prevent mats and tangles from forming.
Brussels Griffons form strong bonds with their owners and are better suited for adult-only homes without children.
Also known as the Monkey dog, the Affenpinscher is a terrier-like toy Pinscher dog breed. Originally bred to hunt and kill rats, mice, and other vermin, this feisty pooch makes a playful, active, funny, and adventurous companion.
Affenpinschers have thick, rough, and shaggy coats that barely shed, which makes them worth considering if you suffer from allergies. To maintain the Affen’s shaggy but neat appearance, brush them once a week and use your fingers to check for any mats and tangles.
8. Wire Fox Terrier
Bred to chase small game, the Wire Fox Terrier is one of many terrier breeds. Like other members of the terrier group, these dogs have smooth, hard, and dense coats that hardly shed (source).
Their coat can be crinkly or have a slight wave and needs to be brushed weekly to remain clean and odor-free.
9. Lagotto Romagnolo
The Lagotto Romagnolo is the only dog breed bred specifically for truffle hunting. They have water-resistant double coats that are made of hair instead of fur. This means that their hair grows slowly, doesn’t shed as much, and holds dander and allergens close to the body instead of releasing them into the air.
For this reason, Laggotos are often referred to as hypoallergenic, though their dense coat is more prone to matting.
10. Bouvier des Flandres
The Bouvier des Flanders is a herding dog breed that is nowadays used as a guard dog, police dog, as well as being kept as a pet. These broad-chested and powerfully built canines don’t shed a lot and can make loyal and gentle companions to people with allergies.
The Bolognese is a small companion dog breed with a long, fluffy, pure white coat. The Bolognese’s non-shedding coat needs to be brushed daily to prevent mats and tangles from forming.
12. Spanish Water Dog
The Spanish Water Dog is easily recognizable for its thick coat of wooly curls. These dogs have a single-layered coat, meaning there is little or no undercoat for this dog to shed. While they don’t shed much, Spanish Water Dogs must be brushed regularly, otherwise, their curls will become matted.
13. Chinese Crested
The Chinese Crested is an unusual-looking hairless dog breed that comes in two varieties – the powderpuff and the hairless. Regardless of the type, Chinese Cresteds shed very little and are a good choice for allergy sufferers looking for an exotic-looking dog.
14. Kerry Blue Terrier
Also known as the Irish Blue, the Kerry Blue Terrier is a working dog used for hunting vermin and guarding or herding livestock. They have thick curly coats that have a similar texture as human hair and don’t shed much.
Whether miniature, standard, or giant, Schnauzers are best known for their distinctively bearded snout and mustache. They have dense, wiry double coats that don’t shed much but need extensive grooming and regular clipping to stay clean and look their best.
While their facial hair might make them look angry all the time, Schnauzers are anything but, and make loving, laid-back, and affectionate companions.
The Maltese is a popular companion dog and a member of the toy dog breed group. Best known for their cheerful and friendly natures, and pure-white soft coats, these doggos make wonderful companions to almost every home.
These playful and charming dogs barely shed and are often crossed with other low-shedding breeds such as Poodle to create hypoallergenic and low-shedding dog breeds.
17. Bedlington Terrier
Originally bred to hunt and kill vermin, the Bedlington Terrier is a small-sized dog. This breed’s coat is a strange mix of harsh and soft hairs and is more crisp than wiry with a tendency to curl, especially on their head and face.
No matter how unusual, the good news is that their coat doesn’t shed much, making Bedlington Terriers a suitable choice for people with allergies.
The Poodle, including Toy, Miniature, and Standard is best known for its elaborate hairstyles and a low-shedding curly coat. Since Poodles barely shed at all they are often crossed with other purebred dogs to create hypoallergenic doodle breeds, like Goldendoodle and Labradoodle (source).
While the Poodle’s tightly curled coat doesn’t shed, it can easily become matted and tangled if not brushed regularly.
Often referred to as a Mop dog, the Komondor is best known for its white-colored, long, corded coat. During puppyhood, these dogs have soft curls that grow heavy as they mature and start turning into long cords that look similar to strands of a mop.
While they don’t shed nor need brushing, their coat isn’t completely maintenance-free. You’ll need to separate the cords regularly to prevent matting and to remove dirt and debris.
The skinny and fast Saluki is one of the oldest dog breeds best suited for large homes with securely fenced yards. These elegant-looking canines have a short, smooth silky coat and may have soft feathering on the legs, back of the thighs, and the underside of the tail.
The Saluki is a low-shedding dog breed with no doggy odor. Their silky coat is relatively easy to groom and should be brushed twice a week to remove dead hairs and prevent tangles from forming.
21. Lhasa Apso
The small Lhasa Apso is originally from Tibet where they served as watchdogs in palaces and monasteries. This breed is best known for its gorgeous long, straight, and dense coat that comes in many different colors.
While grooming a Lhasa Apso’s coat is like having a full-time job, the good news is that this breed barely sheds. If you are a dog-loving allergy sufferer, spending a few hours grooming your pooch might be as bad as having no pooch at all.
22. Shih Tzu
Small and lively, the Shih Tzu is another member of the toy group. They are also minimal shedders, but their long and silky coats must be brushed daily to prevent mats and tangles.
Bred to be companion dogs, Shih Tzus are great apartment dwellers and will have a strong desire to spend time with you.
23. Coton de Tulear
Coton de Tulear is a small and cuddly dog breed that originated in Madagascar and is related to the Maltese and Bichon Frise dog breeds. The coat is one of this breed’s distinguishing features and is often described as fluffy with a cottony texture.
Cotons barely shed and are often recommended as a hypoallergenic breed for people with allergies. But, as always, you should first meet the puppy and spend some time with it to see whether it triggers your allergies.
24. Portuguese Water Dog
Portuguese Water Dogs can have two coat types – curly and wavy. Regardless of the type the coat is always single coated, meaning there is no undercoat. This is the main reason why these dogs are considered hypoallergenic and often recommended to people with dog allergies.
The Portie’s dense and thick coat grows continuously and has to be clipped every few months. The lion clip and the retriever clip are popular ways to trim the Portuguese Water Dog’s coat. It’s up to you to pick the trim you fancy!
25. Scottish Terrier
The Scottish Terrier, popularly called the Scottie is a small-sized and sturdily built terrier that makes a lively and confident companion. These short-legged pooches have short, wiry coats that don’t shed much, which makes this breed suitable for allergy sufferers.
Since the Scottish Terrier’s coat just keeps on growing it should be clipped every two months. Your goal should be to keep their coat short as this will make it much easier to groom and keep clean.
Other Low-Shedding Dog Breeds You Should Consider
While all breeds listed above are a suitable choice, you can never know how you’re going to react to a particular dog. Having said that, here are a couple more low-shedding dog breeds you should consider (just in case all others make you sneeze)!
- Afghan Hound
- American Hairless Terrier
- Irish Water Spaniel
- Tibetan Terrier
- Border Terrier
- Australian Silky Terrier
- Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier
- Peruvian Inca Orchid
- Italian Greyhound
While having allergies can make owning a dog challenging, it doesn’t make it impossible! As you can see, there are many different non-shedding and low-shedding dog breeds that are less likely to cause an allergic reaction.
Let’s not forget, all people and all dogs are different and you won’t know how you’re going to react to a particular dog until you meet them.
So, instead of randomly picking a low-shedding dog, schedule a visit with the breeder or a shelter to see how you react. If there are no symptoms, schedule a few more visits before taking the dog home.