While all dogs shed their fur, some dogs don't shed as much as others. Hair follicles determine texture, length, and rate of growth and shedding. Most low-shedding dogs have the hair type that grows long. And this often means they have special grooming needs, such as requiring regular haircuts. If you're looking for a low-shedding dog, here are 10 excellent breeds to choose from.
A low-shedding dog can still trigger allergies. Many people are allergic to a dog’s dander or saliva, which all dogs spread throughout their environment.
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The Afghan is a large sighthound known for its glamorous tresses. That long, silky hair requires ample attention to keep it healthy. Daily brushing is a must. The coat should also be washed with shampoo and conditioner as needed. Some owners keep their dogs' coats trimmed short to minimize maintenance.
Height: 25 to 27 inches
Weight: 50 to 60 pounds
Physical Characteristics: Long neck; thick, silky coat; colors include black, blue, silver, and more
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The lamb-like appearance of the Bedlington terrier matches its gentle nature. This dog sports a unique coat that has both soft and harsh hair. Although the breed barely sheds, the coat grows fast and must be trimmed often. Brushing or combing twice weekly is recommended to prevent tangles and mats.
Height: 15 to 18 inches
Weight: 17 to 23 pounds
Physical Characteristics: Arched back; curly coat; colors include blue, liver, sandy, and more
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The bichon frise is a playful dog with a cheerful personality. It needs haircuts about every four to six weeks, as well as regular baths to keep its white coat fresh. The coat should be brushed several times a week, if not daily, to prevent dead hair from forming mats.
Height: 10 to 12 inches
Weight: 12 to 18 pounds
Physical Characteristics: Dark, alert eyes; soft, dense coat; colors include white, white and apricot, and white and cream
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The Boston terrier is typically an energetic and friendly dog. Its short and sleek coat tends to shed very little—more noticeable seasonal sheds occur roughly twice a year. Weekly brushing with a soft-bristle brush or grooming mitt can help to remove loose fur and keep the coat healthy.
Height: 15 to 17 inches
Weight: 12 to 25 pounds
Physical Characteristics: Short face; smooth coat; colors include black and white, seal and white, and moreContinue to 5 of 10 below.
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The Lhasa apso is generally playful and loving with its family, though some are aloof with strangers. Its coat may be kept long or trimmed short. Long hair must be brushed several times a week and bathed regularly. Short hair should be trimmed regularly and brushed once or twice a week.
Height: 10 to 11 inches
Weight: 12 to 18 pounds
Physical Characteristics: Long, flat coat; colors include black, cream red, and more
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The Maltese is graceful and playful, yet hardy and fearless. Its coat should be brushed daily to prevent tangles, and it should have regular baths with conditioner. Some owners choose to keep the hair trimmed short for easier upkeep. Short coats should still be brushed once or twice a week.
Height: 7 to 9 inches
Weight: Up to 7 pounds
Physical Characteristics: Dark, alert eyes; long, silky, single-layer, white coat
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All poodle varieties—standard, miniature, and toy—have curly hair that needs regular grooming. If the coat is long, daily brushing is necessary to prevent mats. Poodles with short haircuts should be brushed about once a week. And they should be clipped and bathed about every four to six weeks.
Height: Standard: over 15 inches; miniature: 10 to 15 inches; toy: up to 10 inches
Weight: Standard: 40 to 70 pounds, miniature: 10 to 15 pounds, toy: 4 to 6 pounds
Physical Characteristics: Curly, dense coat; colors include white, apricot, black, brown, and more
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The Shih Tzu is the quintessential lap dog, and its coat needs daily brushing and some styling. (It takes practice to get that topknot right.) Shorter haircuts require brushing about twice a week. Plan on trips to the groomer every four to eight weeks, depending on the desired coat length.
Height: 9 to 11 inches
Weight: 9 to 16 pounds
Physical Characteristics: Long double coat; colors include black, blue, gold, liver, silver, and moreContinue to 9 of 10 below.
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Wire Fox Terrier
The wire fox terrier is a bold, sociable, and active dog with a low-shedding coat. Some people choose to hand-strip their dogs' coats periodically to remove dead fur, while others prefer to trim the coat with clippers. Either way, the coat should be brushed about once or twice a week.
Height: 16 inches
Weight: 15 to 18 pounds
Physical Characteristics: V-shaped, forward-folded ears; dense, wiry coat; colors include white and black, white and tan, and more
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The Yorkshire terrier is a fearless little dog. Its low-shedding, silky coat is similar to human hair and needs to be brushed daily to prevent tangles. Yorkies with short coats should be brushed about once a week. Plan to visit the groomer every six to eight weeks, depending on the desired coat length.
Height: 7 to 8 inches
Weight: 7 pounds
Physical Characteristics: Compact body; silky coat; colors include black and tan, blue and tan, and more
Breeds to Avoid
Many dog breeds—including the Siberian husky, German shepherd, and Saint Bernard—have thick coats that will inevitably shed all over your home. Even the popular Labrador and golden retrievers have dense coats that tend to shed a lot. Brushing several times a week to remove loose fur can keep their shedding to a minimum.