Whether you're allergic to dogs or like to keep your furniture hair-free, knowing the dog breeds that barely shed is going to be your saving grace when you want to get a dog for yourself. Because lots of people who have allergies to pet dander (aka, dead skin cells) have access to one very important loophole that can allow them to get a dog: hypoallergenic dogs.
The term refers to dogs that have hair instead of fur. The biggest difference between hair and fur is that hair is longer and has a slower growth cycle, which causes it to naturally shed less. On the other hand, fur is much shorter and has a much faster growth cycle, which causes it to shed frequently. Generally, dogs with hair only have one layer of follicles, while dogs with fur have a double layer. This extra layer means extra follicles, which also means extra dander. Plus, the more a dog sheds, the more it spreads its dander around the house, and the more people with allergies (or aversions to fur) are affected.
So whether you need a hypoallergenic dog because of allergies, or you prefer one, you're going to want to look into dogs that barely shed. Do keep in mind that not all pet allergies are related to dander, and while there are breeds that don't regularly shed, there are other ways for their dander to be freed into the atmosphere, so talk with an allergist before getting one a dog. If you're cleared, lucky for you, some of the most intelligent, personable, and loyal breeds just so happen to be hypoallergenic! Here are a few of the best: