are shih tzus hypoallergenic
Image source: Everuthing Shih Tzu

When we talk about human allergies to dogs, it’s basically about the danders and not the actual fur on the dogs. Therefore, no dogs are 100% hypoallergenic. Shih Tzus, however, are a good example of hypoallergenic dogs, having hair-like coats that shed less dander, as opposed to other dog breeds. Here, we’ll learn more about the allergy possibilities in Shih Zhus and how you can reduce them.

What Causes Allergies in Pets?

Understanding what causes pet allergies is the first step in establishing whether Shih Tzus are hypoallergenic. Many people have the mistaken belief that it is the fur of dogs that causes their allergies to flare up.

It is, however, an allergen found in pet dander, saliva, and even urine. As a result, there is no such thing as a hypoallergenic dog.

There are some dogs that are less likely to aggravate an individual’s allergies, but because all dogs have dander, saliva, and urine, it is impossible to describe any dog as completely hypoallergenic.

Are Shih Tzus Hypoallergenic?

Despite the fact that no breed is totally hypoallergenic, several breeds are considered to be more suitable for those with allergies. Because Shih Tzus have hair-like fur and a double coat, shed hairs frequently get lodged in the second layer of the coat rather than dropping on the carpet or furniture.

Shih Tzus sweat less than other breeds, therefore there is less dander in the air. Shih Tzus are less likely to induce allergies because of these characteristics.

Dogs with little to no shedding are usually the best choices for allergy sufferers. 

The Shih Tzu is a breed that sheds relatively little. The AKC also granted poodles, schnauzers, and Yorkshire terriers a one-out-of-five shedding rating – all of which are on the hypoallergenic breed list.

The difference between Shih Tzus and those breeds (and the reason those breeds are slightly more dependable alternatives for allergy patients) is the sort of coat the dogs have.

What Type of Coat Does Shih Tzus Have?

The Shih Tzu has a double coat, which means it has two layers: a dense undercoat that keeps them warm in the winter and cool in the summer, and a silky outer coat with some water resistance to keep the undercoat dry in the rain.

Most double-coat breeds, such as the Australian shepherd, husky, and golden retriever, shed a lot. Its outer coat sheds modestly all year, while its undercoat sheds more heavily in the spring and fall.

The shih tzu is a very rare double coat breed that sheds virtually never. It does shed for a few weeks as it transitions from its puppy coat to its adult coat, but once its adult coat is in, this small dog distinguishes itself from its double-coated mates because its adult coat is formed of hair rather than fur.

Hair on a dog, like human hair, can grow for a long period. Individual strands of hair die and fall out more slower in human hair than in dog fur, resulting in far less shedding. Hair is often finer than fur, so when it falls out, it may carry less dander and fewer dead skin cells, making it less likely to cause allergy problems.

Because the shih tzu’s hair coat may get exceedingly long, most owners take their pets to be groomed on a regular basis. When shih tzu owners take their dogs to the groomer for a puppy cut or a lion cut (shih tzu does, after all, mean “small lion dog” in their native nation of Tibet), the groomer will clip and brush the dogs’ hair, leaving many of the dead strands at the salon rather than drifting around your house.

How Can You Know If You’ll Be Allergic To Shih Tzu Dogs?

If you have pet allergies and are thinking about getting a new furry friend, you should spend some time with the breed before making a decision. Whether you’re thinking about getting a shih tzu, a poodle, a Yorkie, or any other type of non-shedding dog, test your reaction to the breed first.

To test your reaction, spend some time (1-2 days) with the breed in your house or visit a home where the breed lives. You might volunteer to pet-sit for a friend or family member who owns the breed. You might offer to foster a dog in your home at a local shelter or a breed-specific rescue organization. Also, you can ask your favorite breeder for assistance.

This trial period could be the first step toward a happy (and allergy-free) shih tzu life.

What Exactly is Dander?

Dander is microscopic skin fragments that fall off almost every mammal. Many people are allergic to these minute skin fragments because they include proteins called Can f I, Can f II in dogs, and Fel d I in cats. These proteins can also be found in the animal’s saliva, urine, and feces. Its presence in the saliva is a major reason why more people appear to be allergic to cats. Cats brush themselves constantly, and their saliva dries and becomes airborne, causing an allergic reaction. Because dogs don’t normally engage in this behavior, they don’t emit as much dander into the air, and fewer people are allergic to them.

How To Reduce Shih Tzu Dander

Indeed, even if your Shih Tzu produces very little dander, an allergic reaction to the small amount in their hair, saliva, and urine can occur, and there are things you can take to help eliminate any difficulties. Here a simple steps you can take to reduce dander.

#1. Brush Your Dog 

Frequent brushing with a soft-bristled brush or a fine-tooth comb is the best technique to reduce dander. If you have a Shih Tzu with long hair, you will need to brush it frequently to keep it from becoming tangled, but doing so on a Shih Tzu with short hair can assist reduce dander buildup.

#2. Bath

Bathing your dog every few weeks might also assist to reduce dander in your home. Dander that becomes trapped in the hair or adheres to the skin will be washed away by the water. But, you must exercise caution to avoid over-washing your dog’s skin. One every 6 to 8 weeks (about every 2 months) should suffice.

#3. Use a Dander Remover

You can use a commercial dander remover, such as Allerpet Dog Allergy Relief, to help reduce the number of baths you need to give your dog. This non-toxic substance is typically sprayed or rubbed into the fur before being wiped away with a hand mitt or cloth along with the dander. Many of these products also condition the skin, slowing the production of new dander.

#4. Vacuum

The dander that falls from our Shih Tzu can end up on the floor and furniture. It can accumulate significantly in locations where the dog spends a lot of time and may irritate your allergies if you are nearby. Vacuuming these places may frequently help minimize the buildup, but choose one with a heap filter or you risk blowing the toxins into the air. Many vacuum brands feature a heap filter, and there are even handheld models available.

#5. Wash 

As previously said, one location where you can come into contact with some of the proteins that cause allergic reactions is in their saliva. Dogs enjoy licking their owners, and many people are unaware that this is the source of their allergies. If you suffer when you are around dogs, you must wash your hands frequently, especially if it licks you. Because the tiny particles are typically minuscule, you can pick up the dander on your hands by touching the furniture. It is possible that rubbing your eyes, nose, or mouth will cause irritation.

#6. Lock Off Specific Rooms

You can also try to keep your dog out of particular rooms by closing them off. Locking doors is the greatest approach to avoid dander distribution in these areas and should be adequate to obtain a good night’s sleep unless your puppy insists on entering the room. You should also avoid contaminating your space with unclean clothes or towels, which can spread dander and cause you to react badly.

What Are Other Hypoallergenic Dogs?

Hypoallergenic Dogs Include the Bichon Frise and Labradoodle. Because of their easy-to-care-for coats, both the labradoodle and the bichon frise are frequently recommended for those with dog allergies.

Do Shih Tzus Have A Lot Of Allergies?

Allergies are common in Shih Tzus, causing itching and inflammation in the ears and elsewhere. The sooner we diagnose and treat these conditions, the less discomfort and pain your pet may experience.

What Is The Cheapest Dog That Is Hypoallergenic?

The Fox Terrier is the most affordable of the hypoallergenic dog breeds on the market. It can be purchased for as little as $300. Despite having lengthy hair on its body, it does not shed a lot of fur. It also does not have a lot of dander in its hair.

What Breed Of Dog Causes Most Allergies?

German Shepherds are one of the most extreme shedders, regardless of whether they have long or short hair. Their hair gets all over the place, especially when they shed their coat twice a year. This large dog loses a lot of fur, which results in a lot of dander in the atmosphere.

Do Shih Tzus Bark A Lot?

The Shih Tzu is a breed that frequently barks. They frequently bark at people and dogs passing by the window or wandering in the distance.

In Conclusion,

If you are allergic to dogs or cats, a Shih Tzu puppy may be just what you are looking for. Shih Tzus are frequently thought to be hypoallergenic. This breed has extremely little dander and will not cause allergies in most individuals. Nonetheless, it is crucial to realize that some dander is still created. We recommend a short trial run with the puppy before purchasing it because this small amount may produce a reaction in hypersensitive people. 

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