Most people think hypoallergenic is defined as a dog who doesn’t shed, and while that may be true in some instances, there is much more to it. Hypoallergenic actually means having a decreased tendency to provoke an allergic reaction. According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, 50 million Americans live with allergies, 10 million of whom suffer from pet allergies. Knowing those facts, it makes sense that people are looking for hypoallergenic dog breeds.
However it actually isn’t even animal hair that people are allergic to. It’s actually proteins, or allergens, that are secreted by a dog’s oil glands. These allergens are shed with dead skin cells called dander. It’s this dander that people are allergic to, not the hair itself. The allergens can also be found in a dog’s saliva and urine. Luckily for canine lovers, people are much more allergic to cats than dogs.
For those who are allergic to the allergens that come from dogs, a hypoallergenic breed will provide the best option.
They will pose less of a risk for allergic reactions such as sneezing, itching, or breaking out in rashes, but it’s important to note that it does not mean the dog does not shed.
No dogs are completely non-shedding, nor are any totally hypoallergenic. In addition, people can have an allergic reaction to any type of dog, and those with allergies can react differently to different dog breeds, even to individual dogs within the same breed.
But some breeds do shed much less and are considered to be “hypoallergenic” breeds despite these clarifications.
Are Miniature Schnauzers Hypoallergenic?
All that being said, Miniature Schnauzers are considered to be hypoallergenic dogs because they shed very little, and are generally safe to those who do have pet allergies. Schnauzers have a short, double coat, with a hard and wiry outer coat and a softer undercoat. The undercoat does shed a little, but the hair gets tangled in its outer coat rather than shedding away the dead or loose hairs from the body.
It is up to the owner to groom their Miniature Schnauzer to pull these hairs out and keep their dog’s coat healthy. You might find the occasional hair around the house, but as long as you maintain regular grooming for your dog, they should not visibly shed their hair.
Since they only shed a tiny bit, Miniature Schnauzer’s are a popular breed for people who have pet allergies, or even those who just don’t want hair all over their house and clothes.
Spend Time With Any Dog Before You Bring Him Home
Even hypoallergenic dogs have dander, but because they shed their fur so little, it is mostly non-harmful to pet owners with dog allergies. However, there are no guarantees with any breed, so anyone with allergies needs to take some extra precautions before choosing a dog. The best thing to do is to spend some time up close with a dog before bringing him to home so you don’t put yourself in an uncomfortable situation.
Whether you are getting your Miniature Schnauzer from a breeder or a rescue, try to spend some time alone with the dog to see if you have any kind of reaction. Keep in mind that some allergic reactions won’t appear right away, and will actually take a couple days to appear. If you find that the dog triggers a reaction, it clearly won’t be the best choice for you. But if you think it seems safe, you can bring your puppy home.
Plus, there are some things you can do at home to help reduce the allergen load inside your house.
Adjustments To Take At Home To Reduce Allergies
Beyond getting a hypoallergenic breed like the Miniature Schnauzer, there a couple things you can do at home to help create a clean environment for those suffering from allergies.
First, you can use a HEPA (High-Efficiency Particle Air) filter that removes nearly all of the particles in the air in the main rooms of your home, like your bedroom and living room.
You can also use a HEPA vacuum cleaner to remove any dander that does make its way onto your floors or furniture.
Both of these strategies can help improve the air quality in your home and help keep them allergen free.
There are also several anti-allergy products you can use, such as shampoos and antibiotics for you, to assist in living with a dog. Unfortunately, if neither of those are enough, you simply may not be able to comfortably tolerate having a dog in your home.