Discovering Large Non-shedding Dog Breeds

Alpine Dog Co. ™

I love cuddling large dogs because they feel like a human. But I’m allergic, and dander and fur in my home is a big no-no. When I was adopting my first dog, I did lots of research to make sure it was hypoallergenic. Well, the truth is that there's no 100% hypoallergenic breed.

However, I have discovered some dogs shed minimally and are considered hypoallergenic. Here are the top 6 large non-shedding dog breeds perfect for allergy sufferers and those seeking a cleaner home.

Discovering Large Non-shedding Dog Breeds


Dogs shed dead skin cells just like humans. The hairs also get old, break, and come loose. The shedding happens throughout the year but is heavy during spring and fall. The loose hair usually clutters the house, and the dander causes allergies to sensitive people.

Imagine the trouble you would get if you're allergic or you want a clean home, but you have a heavy-shedding giant like the Newfoundland? The good news is that not all giant dogs are heavy shedders. Let’s dive into the top 6 large non-shedding dog breeds.

1.    Irish Water Spaniel

The Irish Water Spaniel was bred in Emerald Isle. The dog has strong hunting instincts, and can literally freeze the nose pointing towards the prey’s location. The dog has an adorable appearance of loose curls that tumble down from the head.

I love it when the curls grow long and cover the eyes, giving the dog a slightly goofy expression. What makes this dog more unique is the almond-shaped eyes, the liver-colored nose, the long muzzle, and how the head looks large for its size.

As you can guess from their name, these dogs love water. In fact, these dogs have webbed feet that act like natural paddles. So, don’t be amazed when you see it playing in puddles or jumping right into the river. 


This dog has a dense layer of tight curls that covers the entire body, except for the face and the tail. This coat works like a natural barrier, repelling water and keeping their skin dry underneath. The curly coat sheds minimally, and the loose hairs get trapped.

That means you can remove the loose hair with 2 to 3 times of brushing per week, and you won’t have allergy-causing fur and dander around the home. In fact, the Irish Water Spaniel is categorized as a hypoallergenic breed by the American Kennel Club.      

2.    Black Russian Terrier

The Black Russian Terrier was developed by the Soviet military during the Cold War. The aim was to create a strong and loyal working dog for military guard duty. Indeed, the Black Russian Terrier turned out to be a great working dog that would find wounded soldiers, pull sleds, detect explosives and mines, and guard the borders.

As you can tell from their duties, the Black Russian Terriers are stable, confident, and energetic. The protective instincts are strong, and if you are not a good home leader, well, the BRT takes over. However, the dog is loyal and eager to please the family members.


As the name suggests, the BRT is black, but sometimes you find scattered gray hairs. The dog has two layers of fur: the thick and soft undercoat, and the coarse and weatherproof overcoat. The undercoat insulates the dog, while the overcoat protects it from snow and wind.

In fact, the BRT breeding program was all about getting a dog that can withstand cold temperatures. The outer coat is textured and looks slightly unkempt. So, brush the dog at least once a week to prevent matting.           

3.    Giant Schnauzer

The Giant Schnauzer was developed in Germany to guard property and drive livestock to market. The dog is courageous, composed, and watchful. But note that it has a commanding figure. You must be a strong leader, otherwise, it’ll be stubborn and do things its own way.

The dog has a great deal of stamina and strength. If you don’t exercise enough, it invents its own plays, some of which are not so good. For example, without exercise, Giant Schnauzers chase kids and toys through the house. Considering their sheer size and territorial instincts, these are not the games you want!

So, this breed is preferable for someone who spends time outdoors rather than in apartment life. Let it accompany you for long walks and jogs, swimming and hiking. The dog forms strong bonds with the owner and does virtually anything to protect its family. 


Giant Schnauzers have double coats. The undercoat is soft and dense. The top coat is harsh and wiry, with coarse and stiff hairs that don’t lie flat. This coat doesn’t shed unless you fail to groom the dog for 6+ months. Even if some groomers clip the coat, I prefer just stripping to keep the coat weatherproof.

I also trim the head, so the face doesn’t disappear in the beard and eyebrows. If you don’t trim the head, you’ll need extra attention as the beards will always drip food and water around the house. For brushing, you can do it 2 to 3 times a week.

Note that nowadays there exists another version of the Giant Schnauzer, which has thick and soft leg hairs, and a longer and soft coat. This coat is not as weather resistant compared to the original wiry coat.  

4.    Airedale Terrier

Airedale Terrier is the largest of all terriers, no wonder it’s called the King of Terriers. This beast was bred in Aire Valley, England, that’s why we have the prefix, Aire. These dogs were developed to help in vermin control and have strong hunting instincts.

However, the introduction of Hounds in the breeding bloodline makes the Airedale Terriers less territorial compared to other terriers. As a result, the Airedale gets along better with children and other pets. Note that the dog still has terrier blood, so don’t leave it alone with small children without supervision.

The hunting instincts make the dog adventurous, and a perfect fit for an active family. One thing I have noted about Airedale Terriers is their strong appetite. Feed the dog 1.5 to 2.5 cups in two meals, and keep a check on the dog's weight, and reduce the portions to avoid obesity.


Just like the Giant Schnauzer, the Airedale Terrier has two coats. The undercoat is short and soft, and the topcoat is dense and wiry. But what I love most is their colors. Unlike most terriers solid colors, Airedale Terriers have saddle patterns of darker fur on the back and upper body with tan markings on the head, legs, chest, and underside.

Note that puppies are born black, and then the tan marking develops and spreads over time. So, don’t refuse to adopt an Airedale Terrier puppy simply because it’s black. Another thing: these dogs don’t shed much. Just brush regularly to remove loose hairs.  

5.    Saluki

The Saluki comes packed with attributes that I love. One: it’s hypoallergenic and perfect for allergy sufferers like me. Two: it’s the fastest dog in the world. Not that I hunt, but it’s something that makes me feel an inch taller than my friends.

This dog was bred for hunting in the Fertile Crescent, Arabian Peninsula. It comes from sighthounds, no wonder it’s so fast to not lose sight of the prey. Saluki’s speed clocks up to 42 miles per hour.  

A Saluki can chase and catch you on an E-scooter. As you can tell, this is a sprinter dog and needs lots of space to exercise. On average, give this dog 300 to 400 lateral feet of fenced playground. Note that Salukis jump fences up to 4 feet. So, when I say a fenced area, I mean a high fence.  

However, don’t confuse Saluki’s agility with aggression. He is a gentle dog devoted to his family. In fact, the Saluki gets stressed when there are tensions at home. Note that this dog tends to develop a stronger bond with a single person. So, when you leave it alone, expect separation anxiety.


Unlike the other dogs I have featured so far, Salukis have a short, smooth, and silky coat. But it’s not uncommon to see a Saluki with slight feathering in the tail’s underside, shoulders, legs, and back of the thighs. One thing I love about Saluki is its cleanliness, just like a cat.

The dog is low-shedding, and you won’t find him playing with mud puddles or having doggy odors. You’ll find him licking and cleaning his fur. All you need is to brush it once per week to distribute skin oils and rid of dead hair. Bathing is once in several months. It’s a perfect dog for those seeking a cleaner home. 

6.    Komondor

The list isn’t complete without the Komondor, a flock-guarding dog developed in Hungary. It’s literally a giant dog, weighing 80 to 100+ pounds. The intimidating size and appearance go hand-in-hand with the guarding instincts.

These dogs have strong protective instincts with powerful, thunderous barks that can have any stranger running for the hills. They can detect threats very fast, and respond. But for their families, these dogs are loyal, devoted, and affectionate. I consider their love unconditional. This dog puts itself in danger for one reason: to protect you.


Komondor has a fascinating mop-like appearance. Komondor’s coat undergoes drastic transformation, from the creamy soft curls during puppyhood to long white cords that look like Rastafarian dreadlocks. Grooming this dog is about separating these cords to prevent matting, not brushing.        

Final Thoughts

According to the American Kennel Club, no dog is 100% hypoallergenic. It's about high or low shedding. The above dogs are low shedders and have minimal grooming requirements. Just brush them regularly to remove loose hair, and your home will be free from dander and hair.

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