Dog Hair – If you have a dog, you have plenty of it. I saw an ad on Facebook for a t-shirt that said “Dog Hair – I Don’t Care”. I may as well feel that way because there is always dog hair in my house – on the floor, on the furniture and on me and that black jacket in the closet. The person who invented the Swiffer dry mop is my hero.
We get lots of questions about shedding at the shelter. “Is this puppy going to shed a lot?” “Do you have any dogs that don’t shed?” “Can we take a dog home and see if my son is allergic?” So are there really dogs that don’t shed and can you find them at a rescue?
Those of us in rescue know that we rarely have a thoroughbred anything. 99% of our rescue dogs are a mix of lots of breeds and forecasting the extent to which they will or will not shed is nearly impossible. If you want to go after a dog that is considered non-shedding, you may end up at a breeder for thoroughbreds like anything ending in “oodle”, Bichon, Lhasa Apso, Maltese, ShihTzu, Yorkshire Terrier, Portuguese Water Dog, or Wheaton Terrier. We have had a purebred Yorkie in the past and an occasional Toy Poodle but don’t expect to find them available very often.
If you have a shorthaired dog, do you think it sheds less than one with longer hair? My house is a test kitchen for that question. My Chihuahua has very short hair and sheds like crazy. If the sunlight is just right, you can see the cloud of hair that she leaves behind as she walks. I brush her twice a day, get a lot of hair out of the brush and she still sheds all over everything. The Beagle/Border Collie with longer hair sheds a lot but politely. She leaves hair on blankets (my bed), on the dog beds, on the chair she likes and the rug in the kitchen. I comb her with a fine tooth comb once a week and get about 2 cups of hair in shedding season, less in winter.
From what I have read on the internet (so it must be true), all dogs shed some amount, non-shedding breeds just shed a whole lot less. While a non-shedding breed may shed a lot less, they also require much more time to maintain their long or thick coats with daily combing or brushing to prevent mats and tangles as well as trips to a groomer to keep them looking good. So it can be a trade-off. Deal with the hair or schedule in a lot of time for brushing and combing and $$ for the groomer.
How is the battle with dog hair going at your house? Is it difficult to keep your longhaired dog looking good? Have you tried one of those dog hair vacuum cleaners? How about the expensive combs and brushes available at the pet stores. Do they work? Worth the money? Join the conversation.