Are Pomeranians Hypoallergenic, Or Should Allergy Sufferers Avoid This Adorable & Extra-Fluffy Breed?
Most recognized for their fluffy, cloud-like fur, Pomeranians are one of the most popular small dog breeds in the world, and it’s easy to see why! Pomeranians are toy-sized dogs with bright, cheerful personalities that are always ready to hop to attention for their humans. Loyal, loving, and protective, Pomeranians have big personalities and often think of themselves as watchdogs.
If you’ve fallen in love with a Pomeranian but have a dog allergy, you’re probably wondering: are Pomeranians hypoallergenic dogs? Sadly, the answer is no, Pomeranians are not hypoallergenic, but don’t give up yet!
Keep reading to learn more about how you could still happily own one of these lovely little pups and the truth about hypoallergenic dogs.
Get To Know the Pomeranian
A breed with hundreds of years of history, the Pomeranian is the smallest member of the Spitz dog breeds and originated in northeastern Europe. A descendant of sled dogs, the Pomeranian has an extremely thick double coat that helps keep them toasty and warm in colder climates.
Being a double-coated dog also means that the Pomeranian sheds—a lot. Considered moderate to heavy shedders, Pomerians shed year-round and “blow” their coats twice a year as the seasons change. Poms also need regular grooming to remove stuck shed, detangle, shape, and maintain their coat. The Pomeranian’s double coat is one of the key features excluding them from being considered “hypoallergenic.”
Standing at just 6–7 inches tall and weighing 3–7 pounds, Pomeranians are considered a toy breed. Smaller individuals—under 5 pounds—may be referred to as “teacup” Pomeranians, but are still the same breed as their slightly larger counterparts.
Energetic, courageous, and vocal, Poms are confident little pups who are generally easy to train. They make fantastic family dogs, though due to their small size, should only be in homes with children old/mature enough to respect their space. Goofy and eager to please, life with a Pomeranian will have you laughing constantly, but be prepared to keep up with their energy!
What Causes Dog Allergies?
Humans are allergic to several key proteins found in canine dander (dead skin), saliva, and urine. These proteins are found in every dog breed, and truly 100% hypoallergenic dog breeds are a myth. In fact, many so-called hypoallergenic dog breeds actually have more allergic reaction-triggering proteins than non-hypoallergenic or control breeds.
The word “hypoallergenic” has become a marketing term in the dog world, but what people really mean when they label dogs as hypoallergenic is that they are low-shedding. Low-shedding dogs may drop less dander than moderate and high-shedding breeds, but they also might not.
“Somewhere along the line, the fact that a dog didn’t shed became synonymous with the word hypoallergenic,” said allergist Dr. Tania Elliot in an interview with the American Kennel Club. “Many people who report “tolerance” [to their dog] have mainly learned a new normal of everyday congestion.”
Claiming that entire breed groups won’t trigger allergies and are hypoallergenic is simply untrue. On the other hand, there are examples of individual dogs being less likely to trigger allergies than others. Because of this, the only reliable way to tell if you will be allergic to a dog is to spend time with it. Get up close, rub your face in their fur, and really breathe it in! If nothing happens or your reaction is minimal, you’re good to go!
Unfortunately, for those of us with extreme or severe dog allergies, there is no 100% hypoallergenic dog breed.
5 Ways To Manage Allergies If You Own a Dog
If pet dander can trigger allergies for you or someone in your household, a Pomeranian might not be the right breed for you. That said, there are plenty of dog owners with allergies who have learned to live with their symptoms or have sought treatment to reduce their potential for allergic reactions.
While you can’t do anything about the amount of dander, saliva, or urine your dog produces, there are a few ways you can try to reduce the amount of canine allergen collected in your home.
1. Brush Your Pomeranian Outside
Pomeranians need to be brushed regularly to prevent matting and to remove debris from their fur. Brushing can also help reduce the amount of fur and dander that ends up clinging to you, your clothes, and your furniture.
Try doing your regular brushing sessions outside to allow the dander to blow away in the wind! This is especially helpful to do during spring and fall when your Pomeranian’s shedding is at its worst and they are blowing their coats, dropping a lot of dander.
2. Ditch the Rugs
Your dog’s shedding coat will inevitably get stuck in rugs and carpeting, gathering dander and allergens that can evade even deep cleanings. The best way to prevent canine allergens from accumulating in your home is to remove as many soft surfaces as possible like rugs and carpets. Choose hardwood, instead!
If you have senior pups or dogs that need more traction to walk comfortably, try purchasing lightweight rugs that can be put in the washer to regularly purge the dander. Not only can you easily clean washable rugs, they are also low-pile, and simply won’t collect as much dander as a traditional rug or carpet.
3. Invest In a Good Air Filter
There is no way to prevent your dog from dropping dander—after all, even the lowest-shedding dogs still have skin! A high-quality air filter for your home—or at least your bedroom—can remove small particles of dander and allergen from the air, and make breathing a little easier if you have a dog allergy.
4. Feed Your Pomeranian a Balanced Diet
All dogs will drop some amount of dander—that’s normal and natural! In some cases, dogs can begin to drop an abnormally large amount of dander. Diet is one factor that can impact this since your dog’s skin is affected by their nutrition. Healthy dog food can keep your pup’s skin feeling and looking its best, and prevent excessive shedding by nourishing your Pom from the inside out.
5. Keep Your Pom’s Life Low-Stress
Stress can cause your Pomeranian to shed more than usual, which can also contribute to worsening allergies. Separation anxiety, general anxiety, and factors in or outside your home can make your Pom nervous, so it’s important to pay close attention to how they react to different circumstances.
Beyond making changes to your home to make it quieter and more comforting for your Pom, it’s also a good idea to chat with your vet about treating their anxiety.
Low-Shedding Dog Breeds for Allergy Sufferers
Remember, no dog is 100% hypoallergenic, but some allergy sufferers may be able to live with low-shedding dogs more successfully than moderate and heavy-shedding dogs. If you’re a dog lover looking for a little canine companion that sheds as little as possible, check out one of these low-shedding breeds:
- Bichon Frise
- Brussels Griffon
- Chinese Crested Dog
- Portuguese Water Dog
- Yorkshire Terrier
Are Pomeranians Hypoallergenic? The FAQ
Did we miss any details about the adorable Pomeranians, hypoallergenic dogs, or managing allergies? Well, let’s try to fix that! Here are some of the most common questions on these topics.
Do Pomeranians shed a lot?
Yes. Pomeranians shed all year round and blow their coats twice a year. This popular breed is a moderate shedder, but some may shed more than others. To manage shedding, we recommend brushing your Pomeranian a few times a week and bringing them to the groomer.
Can regular grooming reduce the allergy potential of Pomeranians?
Sort of. While grooming can reduce the amount of shedding and dander in your home, it won’t actually reduce your Pom’s potential to trigger an allergic reaction. In any case, Pomeranians need regular grooming, so you’ll need to find one you trust if you own this popular breed.
Is a Pomeranian a good dog for someone with a pet allergy?
Maybe! If you have a severe pet allergy, a Pomeranian isn’t a good choice. If your allergy is milder and you feel comfortable managing it day to day, then having a Pomeranian could be no problem for you. It all depends on how much congestion you are willing to put up with.
Spend some time with the dog you plan to buy/adopt before you make the commitment. A little bit of interaction will give you an idea of whether you will have an allergic reaction around them or not. It’s much better to know before you bring the dog home than after.
Are teacup Pomeranians hypoallergenic?
No! Teacup Pomeranians are no different from “standard” Pomeranians. The term “teacup” is used to describe a dog under 5 lbs, but teacup dogs still have the same qualities as their larger counterparts.
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- Finding the Perfect Hypoallergenic Dog for Your Family: Tips for Adopting a Dog That Won’t Trigger Allergies
- 55 Hypoallergenic Dog Breeds You Might Be Able To Live With If You Have Allergies