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22 Jun Best breeds for people with allergies

We are a nation of pet lovers, but for some of us being around pets can cause a range of allergic reactions. 

For allergy sufferers, there are some dog breeds that are labelled ‘hypoallergenic’. Whilst no dog can be truly hypoallergenic, these breeds tend to shed little dander – one of the main triggers for allergic reactions. They can make a good option for mild allergy sufferers who want a dog, however those with moderate or severe symptoms could still have reactions. 

If somebody in your home is allergic to dogs, there are a few key points to consider first:

  • No dog is 100% hypoallergenic. Allergies can be triggered by shedding dander, saliva, and urine.
  • Unfortunately, those with moderate to severe allergies may not ever be comfortable, safe, or healthy around dogs
  • You should visit dogs of the breed you are interested in regularly before committing to buying one. This will help you understand whether you react or not, and the severity of your symptoms.
  • If you bring a dog into your home, even one that is low shedding, you need to manage your environment. Create dog-free spaces (like bedrooms, bathrooms etc), reduce your soft furnishing that can trap dander (like carpets and curtains), clean and dust regularly and clean your dog’s bedding at least weekly.

Here is our list of some of the most popular dog breeds for people with allergies.

Cockapoo

Blonde Cockapoo

The bouncy Cockapoo is a cross between a Cocker Spaniel and a Poodle. They have charming personalities and are very family friendly. Their silky, curly coat is inherited from their Poodle parent, and it sheds little dander. As a crossbreed there can be a lot of variation in a Cockapoo’s coat – especially if they have a Cockapoo parent. You should talk to the breeder beforehand about the type of coat the puppies are likely to have and visit regularly as they grow to see if any allergic reactions are triggered.

Border Terrier

Border Terrier

This wiry coated terrier makes a fantastic companion as long as they get plenty of exercise and consistent training. They have fearless characters, and love to explore and play. They have low dander coats, but you’ll need to get them hand stripped 2 or 3 times a year by a professional groomer to keep them looking great and to maintain their hypoallergenic qualities.

Miniature Schnauzer

Miniature Schnauzer standing on a log

These loyal dogs are all about their family – they just want to be in the centre of the action. They’re adaptable little pooches and live happily with all sorts of people in all sorts of environments. Just make sure they get the exercise that they need and provide them with consistent training, and they’ll make a fantastic companion. Make sure you have them professionally groomed regularly to remove the dead hair that catches in their undercoat and brush them a few times a week.

Poodle

Once a valued hunting dog, these days Poodles are caricatured as the pampered companions of high society, thanks to their carefully coiffed haircuts. However, the reality is that the Poodle is a dog with endless qualities. They are intelligent, affectionate, and highly trainable, making them a perfect choice for active families. Even better, their coat is prized for its hypoallergenic qualities – with little shedding of dander, they can make a great option for allergy sufferers.

Bichon Frise

The curly coated Bichon Frise is a happy little pooch with low shedding qualities that are pawfect for first time owners. They have a playful, charming demeanour and love to be the centre of attention. They need regular grooming to keep them looking their best and to remove the dead hair that gets caught in their undercoat. 

West Highland Terriers

The hardy West Highland terrier is a wiry coated breed, like others on this list. They are confident and independent pups that are highly affectionate with their family, making them a good choice for all sorts of people. Their distinctive white coat needs regular brushing and occasional visits to professional groomers to remove the dead hair and maintain their hypoallergenic properties.

Shih Tzu

Shih Tzu looking out from behind a bush

This cuddly lapdog is known for its long, flowing coat and tail that curls along its back. There’s more to this pup than just its looks though – the Shih Tzu is an alert and playful pooch who loves the spend time with its owner. They adapt well in all sorts of environments, so make a good choice for owners who don’t have a lot of room. They need regular grooming to keep them looking great – allergy sufferers may want their Shih Tzu trimmed in a shorter cut for easier maintenance and an even lower chance of shedding.

Labradoodle

Just like the Cockapoo, the Labradoodle is a crossbreed with a Poodle parent. They are a bigger dog than the Cockapoo though, having a Labrador parent. They are smart dogs, with the fun-loving attitude of their parent breeds. They make fantastic family dogs thanks to their loyalty and even temperaments. Their coat is usually curly and low shedding, but you should visit the breeder beforehand to discuss what to expect and see if you react to any of the puppies.

Portuguese Water Dogs

Portuguese Water Dogs have soared in popularity in recent years, thanks in some part to being the breed of choice for the Obamas. Their coat consists of tight, low shedding curls that make them a great choice for allergy sufferers. Traditionally, their back legs and tail are clipped short, giving them a charming off-balance look. They are strong, energetic dogs with big personalities – they make great family dogs with older children who already have experience of larger dogs.

Hungarian Puli

We couldn’t finish this list without mentioning this iconic dog. The Hungarian Puli is a rare breed that hardly sheds – instead, dead hair gets caught in its coat forming their trademark dreadlocks. The dreadlocks need professional grooming to keep them in check, including regular trimming and avoiding getting the coat wet – it can take up to two days to dry properly! Beneath the coat is a hard-working dog with plenty of love to give. With consistent training and plenty of exercise they can make fantastic companions.

Whatever dog you choose, you need to make sure they are getting enough exercise. You can measure this and more with the PitPat Dog Activity Monitor – get yours today for just £39!

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