What is a hypoallergenic dog breed?

First of all, you should be aware that hypoallergenic is not the same thing as a dog that produces no allergens. There is no such dog. "Hypoallergenic" just means that a dog breed has less allergens than other dogs because a different coat of fur or because it sheds less. Part of the reason that you can't get a non-allergenic dog is that it's not just the fur that people are allergic to. People allergic to dogs also react to flakes of skin that get into the dust in the air and to saliva from the dog. However, people with mild allergies may be able to tolerate a hypoallergenic dog because the allergens will be less concentrated.

   

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The breeds:

American Hairless Terrier

Basenjii

Bedlington Terrier

Bichon

Bichon Frise

Bolognese

Chinese Crested

Coton de Tulear

Havanese

Irish Water Spaniel

Italian Greyhound

Kerry Blue Terrier

Lowchen

Maltese

Mexican Hairless

Peruvian Hairless

Poodles

Portugese Water Dog

Schnauzer

Shih Tzu

Soft-coated Wheaten Terrier

Yorkshire Terrier

 

Now, you should not decide "oh, I should go out and buy one of those dogs because I'll have no allergies." LOTS of dogs get abandoned to shelters every year from people doing this. It's irresponsible. What happens is that many people find out that they still suffer from allergies around the dog, and they promptly dump it at the pound. You should not take on a pet you are not sure you can keep. There are two responsible things you can do. One: have a friend committed to take on the dog if you find out you can't tolerate it. Two: If you can't do that, then figure out a way to have contact with that hypoallergenic dog breed for at least a month or so. Find a local dog breeder who specializes in that breed and see if you can walk or play with the dogs frequently to find out. Go into an enclosed space where that kind of dog has been living and see if you get a reaction. Alternatively, find a neighbor or friend who has that kind of dog. Do you have a reaction around the dog's bedding (where the allergens would be concentrated)? You should have repeated contact to make sure.

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