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(207) 846-6515 H
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(207) 846-6515

DERMATOLOGY: HYPOALLERGENIC DOG BREEDS?

HYPOALLERGENIC DOG BREEDS?

Unfortunately for human allergy sufferers, there is no such thing as a truly hypoallergenic dog breed. 

Allergens that people can react to have be identified in dog saliva, dandruff, and hair. Obviously, all dogs have saliva, dandruff, and hair, so all dogs are potentially allergenic to people. 

There are two variables to consider. First, some dogs will produce a relatively larger or smaller amount of allergens. For example: dogs with continual hair growth cycles, such as Poodles and Bichons, do not shed as much as dogs with hair growth cycles that feature periods of "heavy shedding"; dogs with dry seborrhea produce larger amounts of dander; dogs that are maintained with short haircuts and visit the groomer every month generally have a smaller allergen load on them and leave a smaller amount of allergens in their environment.

The other important variable has to do with people. The sensitivities of people with allergies are largely determined by individual genetics. Some allergy sufferers will be more sensitive in general to all dog allergens, and some will be more sensitive to specific allergens. For example: if a person with mild or moderate over-all sensitivity is paired with a dog that does not shed much, such as a Poodle, that person might not experience significant allergy symptoms; if a person that is specifically very sensitive to dander or salivary allergens is paired with a Poodle that has dandruff or the habit of licking itself or people, that person is likely to have serious allergy symptoms.

Yarmouth Veterinary Center
2014

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