Skip to content

Are Shih Tzus Hypoallergenic?

So, where do Shih Tzus fit in? Shih Tzus are often marketed as hypoallergenic dogs because they have hair instead of fur. This means they shed less than dogs with fur, which can help reduce allergen levels in the home. However, it’s important to note that Shih Tzus still produce dander and saliva, which can contain allergens.

In addition, every person’s immune system is different and some people may be more or less sensitive to allergens than others. So while some people may be able to tolerate Shih Tzus well, others may have a severe allergic reaction.

Shih Tzus and Allergies

If you have allergies, it’s important to understand how owning a Shih Tzu could affect your symptoms. While Shih Tzus shed less than some other breeds, they still shed and produce dander and saliva, which can cause allergies. In addition, Shih Tzus are prone to skin allergies themselves, which can cause itching and other symptoms that may worsen allergies in humans.

Dogs & Allergies – A Quick Overview

Before we dive into whether Shih Tzus are hypoallergenic, let’s first take a quick look at why dogs can cause allergies. When dogs shed or groom themselves, they release allergens into the air. These allergens can then trigger allergic reactions in sensitive individuals. The most common allergens in dogs are proteins found in their dander (flakes of dead skin), saliva & urine.

Symptoms of dog allergies can include sneezing, runny nose, watery eyes, itching, hives & even asthma. If you suspect you may have a dog allergy, it’s important to see an allergist for testing and treatment.

Do 100% Hypoallergenic Dogs Exist?

Many people believe that some dog breeds are 100% hypoallergenic, meaning they don’t cause allergies at all. Unfortunately, this is not entirely true. While some dog breeds may produce fewer allergens or be less likely to trigger allergies in some people, no dog breed is completely hypoallergenic.

Factors that Affect Allergy Levels in Shih Tzus

Several factors can affect the allergy levels of Shih Tzus. These include:

  • Genetics: Some Shih Tzus may produce fewer allergens than others due to their genetics.
  • Grooming: Regular grooming can help reduce shedding and dander levels in Shih Tzus, which can help reduce allergens in the home.
  • Diet: A high-quality diet can help keep a Shih Tzu’s skin healthy and reduce the risk of skin allergies.
  • Environment: Allergen levels in the home can be affected by many factors, including humidity, cleaning habits & the presence of other pets.

Signs You Are Allergic to Shih Tzus

If you suspect you may be allergic to Shih Tzus, here are some common signs to look for:

  • Sneezing
  • Runny nose
  • Watery or itchy eyes
  • Itchy skin or hives
  • Wheezing or shortness of breath

If you experience any of these symptoms, it’s important to see an allergist for testing and treatment. A skin prick test or blood test can help determine whether you are allergic to Shih Tzus or other dogs.

Tips for Living with Shih Tzus if You Have Allergies

If you have allergies and are considering getting a Shih Tzu, here are some tips to help you live comfortably with your furry friend:

  • Bathe your dog regularly: Regular baths can help reduce shedding and dander levels in your Shih Tzu.
  • Keep your home clean: Vacuum and dust your home frequently to remove allergens from surfaces and floors. Use a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter, which can trap small allergen particles.
  • Use air purifiers: An air purifier can help remove allergens from the air in your home. Look for a purifier with a HEPA filter for the best results.
  • Take allergy medication: Over-the-counter allergy medication can help relieve symptoms like sneezing and itching. Consult with your doctor or allergist to determine which medication is best for you.
  • Consider allergy shots: Allergy shots, also known as immunotherapy, can help desensitize your immune system to allergens over time. This can help reduce your allergy symptoms in the long run.

Do Shih Tzus Shed?

While Shih Tzus shed less than some other breeds, they do shed to some extent. Their hair grows continuously and will fall out naturally over time, much like human hair. Regular grooming can help reduce shedding and keep your Shih Tzu’s coat healthy and clean.

Shih Tzus are not 100% hypoallergenic, but they may be a good choice for some allergy sufferers due to their low shedding and generally mild-mannered nature. If you have allergies and are considering getting a Shih Tzu, be sure to take precautions to reduce allergen levels in your home and consult with your allergist for advice on managing your symptoms.

Are Shih Tzus Hypoallergenic?