Lover of the Australian Shepherd, are you curious if this breed is considered hypoallergenic?
Australian Shepherds, or Aussies for short, are known around the world for their intelligence, obedience and incredible loyalty. An interesting fact we discovered is that, despite their name, this absolutely gorgeous breed was developed in the United States in the 19th century. Names sure can be deceiving!
For people who have allergies, one of the questions we’ve committed ourselves to exploring is whether this breed is a good fit in your household. True to our style, we’ve gone right down to the details about if Australian Shepherds are hypoallergenic or not and why this is the case.
Read on to have all your questions answered!
Are Australian Shepherds Hypoallergenic?
Unfortunately, the answer to that is no. Australian Shepherds are not considered hypoallergenic, making them likely to trigger allergic reactions in those with pet sensitivities.
The top reasons why this breed is not hypoallergenic include:
- Double coat with seasonal blowout
- Medium to high levels of shedding
- High maintenance grooming
- Medium to high dander levels
Overall Hypoallergenic Score: 3/10
The types of allergies most commonly triggered by pets are either breathing allergies or skin reactions and the Aussie is likely to affect both. Need more of the juicy deets? Read on!
How to Decide if an Aussie is Hypoallergenic to You
Some dog breeds are less likely to trigger certain types of allergies. As mentioned above, breathing allergies and skin allergies are the two top ones to consider here. When it comes to the Aussie, we have rated both:
Probability of Causing Breathing Allergies: 9/10
Probability of Causing Skin Allergies: 8/10
While shedding is a major factor affecting those with breathing allergies or asthma, those with skin allergies have more to consider. The rest of this article will explain more about how different features of the Australian Shepherd affect allergies.
We’ll also offer tips on what you can do if you are allergic yet come into contact with an Aussie. Or if you just love this breed so much you still want it anyway, allergies be damned!
Do Australian Shepherds Shed a Lot?
Yes, Australian Shepherds are average to high shedders. Not only do Aussies shed throughout the year, they also have seasonal blowouts. They shed profusely during spring when they lose their thick winter coats, all in preparation for the summer.
Shedding Levels: 7/10
Hair Length: 7/10
Since Australian Shepherds have medium to long hair length, you’ll definitely notice hair around the house on the rugs, floors, and furniture!
As they shed, any outdoor allergens or dander that have been trapped in the fur also get released into your home.
Regular grooming and brushing can significantly help reduce the amount of shedding. But, it won’t be your saving grace if you are affected by allergies to your Aussie.
How an Australian Shepherd’s Size Affects Allergies
Being a medium sized dog, these beauties have a larger sized surface area that is constantly producing dander and allergy inducing proteins.
- Males: Standing height of approximately 23 inches
- Females: Standing height of approximately 22 inches
The bigger the dog, the more fur it has to shed and the more dander it is likely to produce. Compared with small dogs, medium sized dogs are also able to reach more areas in your home, spreading more fur and allergens all around.
Australian Shepherd Drooling and Dander Levels
Many times, you’ll find that allergy sufferers with skin reactions are allergic to one of two things: The proteins in the drool, or dander.
Since allergies very much depend on your unique sensitivities, you might be in the clear if the proteins in an Aussie’s dander don’t affect you.
This is a highly unlikely scenario though!
Drooling Levels: 4/10
Dander Levels: 7/10
The medium size of their bodies inevitably calls for a medium dander production rate. When a dog begins to shed any amount of the coat, dander is also released into the surrounding environment. Thus, triggering a potential allergic reaction in allergy sufferers.
Hello airborne allergy delivery system!
Drooling is quite normal in dogs, but again, inevitable. Luckily, these sweet babies tend to be on the less-drooly side of life!
If you’re in love with this breed but want to reduce your chances of an allergic reaction, read on to the end of this article! We have a few suggestions in store for you.
Grooming and Coat Maintenance
Australian Shepherds don’t need regular bathing. Only when they start to get a bit smelly, or when recommended by a veterinarian.
Ease of Grooming: 6/10
Risk of Allergen Exposure: 8/10
When bathing, it is important to use a proper shampoo in order to keep their skin and coat happy, healthy and shiny!
Brands like Earthbath Oatmeal and Aloe, and Burt’s Bees are great and safe options to consider for your Aussie’s bath time!
- Cleans and softens without drying out the skin
- All natural ingredients including shea butter and honey for a beautiful shiny coat
- Veterinarian recommended formula safe for all dogs and puppies
- Soap-free Ph balanced formulation
- Low irritant ingredients with Collodial Oatmeal and Organic Aloe Vera to promote healing.
- Deodorizes and deep cleans without drying out the skin
Grooming a longer double coat may seem slightly overwhelming, but fret not! Caring for these babies is not as hard as you’re thinking. Other than their spring blowout season, Aussies primarily only require regular brushing to get rid of the loose hair.
Making sure you are using the right brush is essential! After all, just as we’re sure you don’t want your brush potentially yanking on healthy hair, we know your Aussie feels the same way! Look for a gentle brush that can help detangle both the under coat and top coat.
In Love With The Aussie Breed and Want One Anyway? Tips for Reducing Allergies
We totally get it!
If you’re set on getting an Aussie and no other breed tickles your fancy, here are some tips to help manage your allergies. These things are a good step forward though the fact will remain that your Aussie puts you at risk of allergic reactions simply by being in your space.
Tip 1: Training
Australian Shepherds are highly intelligent dogs. Proper training can potentially help you if you are willing to fight through the allergies. You’ll be able to share a roof with one of these loving fluffers if they follow your rules!
As fast learners, with proper time and patience you can train these brilliant dogs to do almost anything. Essential things we recommend:
- Teach them to stay within boundaries of the house
- Make sure they avoid bedrooms, furniture and all other textile surfaces
- If you happen to be allergic to the saliva and not the dander, make sure they won’t lick!
Tip 2: Fortify Your Home
Get as many allergy combatting things as your budget will allow. Seriously, it might just be your saving grace!
We recommend the following to get started:
- A quality air purifier for pet allergies
- HEPA filters or all relevant appliances
- The best vacuum cleaner you can possibly get your hands on
- A handheld vacuum for quick, everyday cleans to control loose hair
- At the very least, get a vacuum attachment specific for pet hair
- Reduce the textile surfaces around your home, especially rugs
- Keep allergy medication on hand, just in case!
Tip 3: Choose a Hypoallergenic Aussie Breed Mix for Less Allergy Reactions
Australian Shepherd x Poodle
Loyal, playful and intelligent, this cross can inherit some of the best qualities from both breeds. Being that Poodles tend to shed significantly less, your chances of an allergic reaction may lessen greatly.
Australian Shepherd x Boston Terrier
Loyal and energetic, unlike Australian Shepherds, Boston Terriers are low shedders which require minimal grooming.