From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
A Hypoallergenic dog breed is a dog breed (or crossbreed) that is more
compatible with allergic persons than other breeds.
The significant allergens are proteins found in the
dog's saliva and dander.
Production of the allergen, and therefore human allergenic
reaction, varies by breed.
Also, breeds that shed less are more likely to be
hypoallergenic, since the dog's dander and saliva stick to the hair
and are not released into the environment. But
protein expression levels play a major role and amount of shedding
alone does not determine degree of allergic reaction. "Even if you
get a hairless dog, it's still going to produce the allergen," Dr.
Wanda Phipatanakul, chair of the Indoor Allergen Committee for the
Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology is quoted in the
newsmagazine U.S. News & World
Report as saying.
How hypoallergenic a particular dog is for a particular person may
vary with the individual dog and the individual person.
If a person is allergic, they may be best able to tolerate a
specific dog, possibly of one of the hypoallergenic breeds. Dr.
Thomas A. Platts-Mills, head of the Asthma and Allergic Disease
Center at the University of Virginia,
explained that there are cases in which a specific dog (not breed)
might be better tolerated by a specific person, for unknown
reasons. "We think there really are differences in protein
production between dogs that may help one patient and not another,"
Dr. Platts-Mills said.
All dogs shed, and all dogs produce dander and saliva in some
noted above, the amount of the allergenic protein present on the
dander and in saliva varies by breed. Also, the amount of the
allergen can be reduced or eliminated in individual dogs by
treatments such as bathing.
But for most breeds, when not regularly bathed, even a dog who
sheds very little or has little dander can trigger a reaction in a
Size may be a factor in determining hypoallergenicity. It is
possible that the total body surface area of the dog is more
indicative of reduced production of allergens than its breed.
Smaller dogs will also leave fewer environmental pollutants
containing dog dander and dog allergens (reduced fecal matter,
urine and saliva). Small hairless dogs may be less likely to cause
allergic reactions "because it's so easy to bathe them and the
dander falls off them."
Dogs may leave behind urine, saliva and fecal matter as allergen
Dogs with access to the outdoors may introduce outdoor allergens
such as mold and pollen with larger animals tracking in more of
It is well established that most individuals with dog allergy also
suffer with additional environmental allergies.
Individuals with dog allergy may also be at increased risk for
human protein hypersensitivity with cross-reactivity of dog dander
allergen and human seminal fluid.
Excessive barking may also contribute to higher levels of
allergen dispersal, as saliva and dander are projected from the
animal during barking. Thus, many small breeds that are known for
excessive barking may not be ideal, despite their smaller total
body surface area. Those with dog allergy sensitivities seeking to
adopt may wish to identify a small dog with a calm temperament.
Researchers have shown that frequently bathing dogs reduces the
amount of allergen related protein on the fur or hair of the dog
and the amount of airborne allergen.
Bathing a dog at least twice a week will minimize or even eliminate
the reaction of an allergic person to a dog.
Frequent cleaning and vacuuming of the home, using air filters,
restricting the dog to certain rooms, and adopting a small dog that
can easily be given frequent baths are all recommended by the
Humane Society of the United States to control allergens.
Scientific research has repeatedly shown that good cleaning
practices in the home remove allergens from the environment.
Many allergists suggest that a dog not be introduced to the
environment of a dog allergic individual. There is some concern
that continued exposure may lead to asthma. While "allergy shots"
can reduce many individuals dog allergic reactions, the most common
approach remains avoidance.
There have been recent studies suggesting early introduction of
pets to home may reduce the likelihood of developing
are reports of individuals who will become less sensitive with
continued exposure to a pet in the environment. But allergists warn
that pet owners cannot rely on a breed being non-allergenic just
because a particular allergic pet owner can tolerate a specific dog
of that breed.
The list below cites dogs considered hypoallergenic allergens based on shedding
||Short hair no shed and dander is a minimum with this medium
||Recommended by AKC for allergy sufferers. Does
not shed. Hair will come out when brushed or combed.
|Bouvier des Flandres
||Recommended by the UK Kennel Club as a breed that does not
||Has very little fur, doesn't shed much
but still produces saliva and dander
|Dandie Dinmont Terrier
||Short hair, single coat
|Irish Water Spaniel
||Short hair, single coat
||Single-coated, short hair, sheds less
||Doesn't shed 
|Peruvian Inca Orchid
||Minimal dander due to small size 
|Poodles of all sizes
||Recommended by AKC for allergy sufferers. Doesn't
shed. Low dander.
|Portuguese Water Dog
|Schnauzers of all
||Short hair, sheds less.
However, the breed is known for excessive barking,
 and barking can
distributes the dog's saliva in the environment
||A Shih Tzu has two coats of fur, with the bottom coat shedding
into the top coat rather than off of the dog entirely; as a result,
this breed sheds very little in the conventional sense. With
regular brushing and bathing, shedding can be reduced to almost
nothing. As they shed so lightly, Shih-Tzu are considered to be one
of the breeds more suitable for people with allergies.
||Recommended by AKC allergy sufferers. Does not shed. Hair will
come out when brushed or combed. However, among the worst breeds
for excessive barking, which thus produces saliva and dander.
but still produces saliva and dander
||Recommended by AKC allergy sufferers, along with some other
breeds. Doesn't shed. Low dander.
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