Monthly Archives: March 2014

Dogs That Don’t Shed

A very popular and common request heard coming from people in search of their perfect canine companion is that they wish for a dog who does not shed! Heavy shedders and even dogs with a moderate shed can cause havoc on our vacuum cleaners and our sinuses as we breathe in their floating hair follicles in the air.

All Shapes and Sizes

The non-shedding dog breeds are also consider “hypoallergenic” in nature. They truly come in an assortment of sizes, shapes, and even instinctual drives. As these breeds were created for a variety of tasks from hunting to companionship, each one will come with his very own personality and quirks. Don’t judge a dog based on his coat type alone, though, as the breed under that hair is also vital to your new relationship being successful.

One of the most common non-shedding dog breeds is the Poodle. This dog comes in 4 different sizes; the standard, the moyen, the miniature, and the toy. While they are all of the same breed, their size can play a role in the instincts and drives that they carry with them. Over the years the smaller Poodles were being bred for their size, health, and temperament and their work ability has been virtually bred out of them. The standard Poodle however may still carry with him the instincts to hunt and retrieve as his ancestors were created to do. This breed can have a variety of hair styles from the working dog cut to the show style, and vary rarely some owners will allow their Poodle’s fur to become corded, in which it looks like dread locks!

Other common non-shedding breeds are:

  • Maltese dogs are small and commonly white. They were bred specifically to be constant and loving little companions, charming humans with their sweet and playful personalities.
  • Lhasa Apso dogs are another small dog breed that was bred to be both watch dogs and pets. Their personalities are often reserved towards strangers as they remain loyal to their owners.
  • Schnauzers have a more wire coat than the soft long or curly hair as other long hair breeds. They also come in 4 sizes; giant, standard, miniature and toy.
  • Yorkshire Terriers are small dogs that can weigh between 4 and 15 pounds as adults. Their silky fur is very fine, soft, and must be brushed at least daily to prevent tangles.
  • Italian Greyhounds are a smaller breed than the Greyhound but looks almost incidental. Their very short, very thin coat means they virtually do not shed.

Mixed Breeds

Aside from these purebred dogs, there are purposefully bred mixed breeds that can also fit the bill of a non-shedding dog. These are typically dogs that have been crossed with a Poodle, Yorkshire Terrier or Shih Tzu. These dogs include, but are not limited to the Labradoodle, Aussiedoodle, Yorkie-poo, and Teddy Bear. These dogs all have the constantly growing hair that must be cut or clipped at some point, but most do not need it as often as their purebred parents. For example, a purebred Poodle may need to be clipped every 6 weeks while the Labradoodle can be allowed to be clipped only every 4 months. These mixed breeds tend to have a look of their very own that allows the owner to decide how they can look; shaggy or neatly clipped.

Even with the slack in how often they need to get a hair cut, these dogs will still need to be brushed every day. Dogs with this hair type that are not brushed often develop hard to deal with tangles and mats. When not taken care of, a mat or tangle can grow large quickly, pull the hair on the dog and cause rips in the skin. The matted fur allows bacteria to infect the skin tears as well as fungus from built up moisture to grow. This leads to a very painful and very dangerous situation for for a dog, so daily brushing is a much needed preventative measure for the health of your non-shedding pet.

If you are considering a non-shedding breed for your next canine companion, consider the work that may be needed in his grooming as well as the other requirements for any breed you wish to bring home. Mixed breeds can have their own special requirements in comparison to purebreds, but you should consider your lifestyle and ability to care for a non-shedding dog before you make one your next best friend!

Top 5 Most Popular & Cute Small Dog Breeds

While looking for cute small dog breeds, you might be surprised by the wide variety of options out there. Of course, you may be lucky enough to find a small half breed dog as well, but most people seem to focus on pure blood. I have done some research on the most popular such breeds, though and according to my studies and stats, it looks like some breeds are more popular than others. Most people are clearly not aware of all the options they have, so they mostly go along with one of these breeds. So what are my main recommendations from this point of view?

Short Hair Chihuahua

Chihuahua belongs to a wider group of small breeds. Such dogs are mostly raised for company and exhibitions as well. They are originally from Mexico and no matter how small they seem at a first glance, they actually have wise personalities. They have the tendency to get attached to one or two individuals and they are always curious, active and up for some challenges. However, the breed cannot really stand strangers and may become nervous in their presence. They should be socialized as soon as possible or they become anxious in new environments. If you fail to do it, they will never get along with other pets or even the kids. On the other hand, chihuahua is a territorial dog, so it makes a good barking alarm.

The energy levels are medium, while the barking tendency is quite high. Fortunately, Chihuahuas can be easily carried around, and its aggression can go up to a medium level only.

Maltese Bichon

Often referred to as a simple bichon, this breed is split into multiple varieties. Such dogs were initially mentioned in the ancient Egypt manuscripts, but they have quickly gained a lot of popularity in the Roman culture as well. The Greek called the breed a Maltese bichon. However, it seems that Malta was only the main source for these dogs and nothing else. Back then, it was a very important commerce point on the map. Today, the Maltese bichon is widely appreciated as a company pet. It is popular, elegant, faithful, sensitive and intelligent. It also has an active behavior, so it is one of my favorite breeds out there. The constitution is very robust. As for the actual walking, I find it to be the funniest part in a Maltese bichon.

The entire breed is covered is a long, white and silky hair. A recently washed Maltese bichon is perfectly white and pure.

Pekingese

The pekingese is a royal dog with a lot of self confidence. I have noticed that plenty of dogs walk with their heads up, just like they would actually try to underline their royal status. They are normally raised for the company because they are small, easy to walk and take care of. Pekingese dogs can be very active and full of life. They make great companions for the entire family, whether it comes to adults or kids. Generally, the race is not too aggressive. However, older dogs may not always enjoy being disturbed. They will never hesitate to protect their territories either. As for a few general exceptions, do not be surprised if such a small dog ends up barking at you for no reason. Sometimes, they might seem very aggressive.

Long Hair Chihuahua

Just like the short hair variety, long hair chihuahua comes from Mexico as well and has always been bred for company and expositions. The dog is relatively wise and very friendly with the owner. It is always curious and ready to learn new things, not to mention about exploring new environments. However, it requires socialization training as soon as you get it. Otherwise, it may not be too friendly with strangers or other dogs. The small size is an impediment for this dog. I have seen small chihuahua dogs that barked louder than large dogs, only because they are intimidated by larger beings. It is also worth noting that long hair chihuahuas love living in larger groups, so you should get more of them if you have a large yard.

Brussels Griffon

Centuries ago, the Brussels griffon breed has been widely used to hunt small animals and pests, such as maggots or rodents. Today, the breed is specifically used for personal company. It is small, fluffy and represents one of the less popular breeds in my opinion. I was lucky enough to actually play around with a few Brussels griffons and they are very intelligent and trustworthy. They can be very sensitive, so do not even think about negative corrections because they will frighten such dogs. With time, they will become shy and scared whenever they find themselves around you.

In conclusion, I have seen a lot of cute small dog breeds and it is hard to tell which one has impressed me the most. Each of them has that sparkle in their eyes that melts my heart. However, these five breeds are the most popular ones I have seen around.