Choosing the best hypoallergenic dogs for kids is an important step if your allergic child wants to have a dog in his life. Hypoallergenic dogs is a term that is not totally true. No dog is completely hypoallergenic but some dogs are less likely to cause allergic reactions. Do keep in mind; just because a dog is considered hypoallergenic does not make him the perfect dog for your child. Anytime you are adding a dog to your family, there will be many considerations, including: the size of the dog, the activity level of the dog and how that matches your family’s lifestyle, and upkeep of the dog. With these things in mind, let’s look at some of the best hypoallergenic dogs for kids and their particular characteristics.
What Makes a Dog Hypoallergenic
While you may long to see your allergic child running along beside a beautiful Golden Retriever or friendly Labrador Retriever, it is not recommended for a child with allergies. The Golden and Lab are huge shedders along with being big droolers. Both breeds make great dogs for kids but not for a child with allergies. But, there are some amazing hypoallergenic dog alternatives.
This brings us to what makes a dog be considered hypoallergenic. Dogs that shed a lot of their hair are very allergenic due to the amount of dander that is also shed with the hair. the more shed hair, the more dander. Dander is the main culprit that affects allergies. The other thing that causes allergies to flare is saliva from the dog. Dogs that are big. slobbery droolers are out of the question for allergy sufferers; think Saint Bernard, that would be a big NO!
So, the best hypoallergenic dogs for kids with allergies would be a low-shedding dog that does not slobber a lot.
Best Hypoallergenic Dogs For Kids With Allergies
Bichon Frise – The bichon is a smaller dog that especially seems to like kids. With their tightly coiled wooly hair, they are non-shedders but will require regular brushing and grooming about once per month to avoid matting.
Poodle – Poodles come in several sizes, so there is a poodle to fit in all needs and lifestyles. Sizes range from the Tiny Teacup Poodle, weighing 3-5 pounds to the Standard Poodle, weighing in at 70 pounds plus. Poodles have tightly curled hair that does not shed but will mat if not regularly brushed and professionally groomed. Often poodle owners choose to clip their dog’s hair close for easy maintenance. Poodles generally are real clowns and enjoy playing with the children in the family.
Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier – The Wheaten Terrier is a dog that likes to be active and should be exercised daily. This hypoallergenic breed does well with kids and usually readily adapts to his environment, whether that be city life or country life. This silky-coated dog needs regular brushing to prevent his hair from matting.
Portuguese Water Dog – The Portuguese Water Dog is a larger breed that would do well in an active family who likes outdoor activities. This is the hypoallergenic dog that President Obama chose for his daughter who was allergic to dogs. This breed requires grooming to keep his waterproof coat in top shape.
Schnauzer – The Schnauzer is an active breed that enjoys living in an active family with kids. This hypoallergenic dog breed comes in three sizes; Miniature, Standard and the Giant Schnauzer, so there is one for every age child. The breed does require regular grooming to prevent his coat from matting. The schnauzer tends to be a protective breed that will guard his family.
Maltese – The Maltese dog is small and known to be brave and fearless. This non-shedding dog would probably do best in a home with older children due to being more fragile despite the fact that they view themselves as big and bad. The Maltese requires regular grooming of their silky hair.
Bedlington Terrier – The Bedlington Terrier has an appearance that reminds you of a lamb. His soft, curly, wooly coat does require regular grooming. His activity level is less demanding but he does enjoy a daily walk and play activity.
Irish Water Spaniel – The Irish Water Spaniel is a happy go lucky dog that requires an active lifestyle. This double-coated dog will need to be brushed regularly to keep his coat mat-free.
Spanish Water Dog – The Spanish Water Dog is a highly active dog and will need a family that has an active lifestyle. If hiking, boating or running is a part of your life, this non-shedding dog will fit right into your family. The breed tends to have a naturally protective nature. The Spanish Water Dog does not require as much grooming as some of the other hypoallergenic dog breeds but should be shaved yearly.
Kerry Blue Terrier – The Kerry Blue Terrier is an active dog who loves to have fun with his family. His coat will require regular brushing and grooming.This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience (which means if you make a purchase after clicking a link I will earn a small commission but it won’t cost you a penny more) Click here for my full disclosure policy.
According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, as many as 3 in 10 allergic people in the United States have an allergic reaction to dogs and cats. The hair itself is not the culprit but the saliva, dander, pollens, and dust that cling to it. This is why it is important to bathe and groom your dog on a regular basis. Between grooming, use grooming wipes to gently remove allergens from your dog’s coat.
Helping Your Child Live With Allergies to Dogs
- Carefully research and select from the best hypoallergenic dogs for kids. If possible, have your child spend some time with the dog before committing to adopting it.
- Regularly groom your dog to remove allergens and keep the hair mat-free. Many non-shedding dogs are double-coated. The hair does shed but instead of dropping loose, it mats under the top layer. Use a brush meant for the purpose of removing the undercoat. I like the Pet Grooming Tool with the Two-sided Undercoat Rake.
- Develop a housecleaning routine to minimize allergens.
Although some allergic children may not be able to live with a dog, many can with the proper preparation and care. With careful selection and care, your child with an allergy to dogs may soon be romping and playing with his new best friend with less or no allergy symptoms.This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience (which means if you make a purchase after clicking a link I will earn a small commission but it won't cost you a penny more) Click here for my full disclosure policy.