Pet hair can be a burden for any pet owner, no matter the breed, but some pets just seem to shed a lot more hair than others. The issue of pet hair all over the carpets, sofa, car seats, stairs and who knows where else can be enough to put some animal lovers off from owning a dog. The solution for many is to simply look for a dog that doesn’t shed. The problem with this approach is that very few exist.
What dogs don’t shed their hair?
There are some dog breeders that will try and sell a pup by saying that the breed doesn’t shed at all. At the same time, there are dog websites that insist that there is no such thing as a non-shedding dog. Neither are exactly true. There is a good chance that what the breeder means is that their puppies are prone to light shedding compared to other breeds, to the point where the pet hair is barely noticeable. All dogs with fur will naturally shed their coat just as we shed out hair to let new strands come through. It is a healthy part of a dog’s life and should not be discouraged. This means that the vast majority of dogs will shed a little fur at some point. The only exceptions are animals that are completely hairless breeds. Even a Chinese Crested Dog will molt what little fur it has.
What dog breeds are there that only shed a little bit?
Unless you are desperate to own a dog that that has no fur to shed, or you think that these hairless pups will be the best companions for your family, you may have to concede that your pet dog is going to shed a little bit of hair. The good news is that there are actually a lot of dog breeds that shed in small amounts. These dogs can be found across the spectrum so prospective owners are not left with large, wire-haired gundogs or tiny toys. Poodles are great for homes that don’t want to have to deal with too much pet hair, as are Water Dogs and a number of terriers.
The other appealing thing about some of these breeds is that they are great for families where there are allergies to pet fur and dander. Poodles are seen as one of the best breeds for these households because of the lack of shed hair and the type of coat that they have. The same goes for the Portuguese Water Dog. This was famously the dog of choice for the Obama family because of Malia Obama’s allergies. Other hybrid dogs have been bred to limit the amount of hair shed and create hypoallergenic family pets. Popular varieties include the Labradoodle and the Cockerpoo.
Why are these dogs less prone to shedding than some other breeds?
Shedding varies greatly from breed to breed and there are some misconceptions about which dogs are going to leave the most hair lying around. It is easy to assume that a large, long-haired breed will be the worst offender, but long hair is simply more noticeable. The problem tend to be breeds with a soft undercoat. This second coat can shed a lot and pushes out the hair on the upper coat.
There are some long haired toy dogs like the Maltese and Yorkshire Terrier that hardly shed while the Pug is seen as one of the worst culprits of them all. Some of us may assume that big working dogs all go through huge seasonal moults – like a German Shepherd – but there are some working and pastoral dogs that shed very little. The long, dreadlock style coats of the Komodor and Hungarian Puli aren’t prone to shedding, neither are the coats of the Schnauzer and Bouvier des Flandres.
Finding the best match for your family
The good news is that even though there are no dogs with fur that won’t shed at all, there are plenty of breeds out there that won’t shed very much. The breeds mentioned above all have a coat type that doesn’t moult as quickly and many have the added advantage of being hypo-allergenic. There are low-shedding dogs in all categories so consider the type of dog you want, research its coat type and find a good match.