If you suffer from an allergy, you will need to give careful consideration to the dog breed that you introduce to your home.
A dog’s saliva or the dander in its hair can cause an allergic reaction leaving you feeling short of breath, itchy, or sniffly. The symptoms and severity of the allergy can differ between individuals and because of this, it is important to choose the best dog breed for you.
The calm nature of Golden Retrievers makes them great family pets, but they are not hypoallergenic.
Below we have covered the reasons as to why this breed is not considered hypoallergenic and whether it is possible to have a Golden Retriever, even if you suffer from allergies.
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What is a hypoallergenic dog?
There isn’t a single dog breed that is deemed to be 100% hypoallergenic, but you will find that some are better suited to those that suffer from allergies in comparison to others.
The dander or protein that is found in a dog’s urine or saliva is released into the air and triggers a reaction in those with allergies. Some dogs produce less of this than others which makes them more allergy-friendly.
Why aren’t Golden Retrievers hypoallergenic?
Golden Retrievers have a double coat, their inner coat is soft and fuzzy whilst the outer coat is long and smooth.
Aside from this, the breed is also renowned for excessive shedding at certain times of the year. As the summer and winter approach, they shed their current coat to prepare for their new coat to grow.
More dander is going to begin to accumulate in the air as your Golden Retriever sheds.
Should I get a Golden Retriever if I have an allergy?
Although Golden Retrievers aren’t recognized as a hypoallergenic breed due to their heavy shedding habits, they may still be considered by those who have milder allergies.
For some individuals, spending time in the company of a heavy shedding dog is a complete no-go due to the severity of their allergies.
After spending a very short amount of time in the same room as a Golden Retriever, they will likely start to show immediate signs of a reaction.
Other people may have less severe allergies meaning that they can spend some time interacting with a non-hypoallergenic dog without having a reaction.
Generally, it is recommended that those with allergies stick to dog breeds that are identified as hypoallergenic. It is worth noting that as no breed is hypoallergenic, there isn’t a guarantee that the type you choose isn’t going to result in an allergic reaction.
If you love Golden Retrievers and have decided to introduce one into your home despite your allergies, there are some steps that you can take to minimize the amount of dander in your home.
First and foremost, you will need to groom your retriever regularly. As they have longer coats they will benefit from a regular bath using a dog-friendly shampoo. Regular bathing will also help to reduce the levels of dander.
After bathing your dog, you can then brush them to get rid of any excess fur. Occasionally, you may wish to take your retriever to a professional groomer. A combination of each of these steps will ensure that the amount your dog sheds is kept to a minimum.
It is also important to keep the environment surrounding you clean. Make sure that you frequently clean any furniture that your dog has come into contact with to get rid of the dander.
You may also choose to have a room in your house that is completely off bounds to your dog. This will provide you with somewhere that you can go to relax without having to be wary about whether or not you will react to your dog.
Moreover, allowing your dog to sleep in the same bed as you is not advised. This is because the dander is going to accumulate on or between the sheets and this is going to heighten the risk to you.
Adopt a cleaning regime that you will be able to follow on a weekly basis. This will ensure that there aren’t high levels of dander in your home and the air is also clean. You may choose to invest in a HEPA filter or purifier.
Carpets can worsen allergies and this is because the fibers are prone to collecting the dander and other allergenic particles that may trigger a response. However, if your home is already fitted with carpets, you should hoover them regularly to keep the levels to a minimum.
You will likely find that following these steps makes having a golden retriever and a mild allergy manageable. However, if you have a severe allergy, you may not find that these steps have any impact on the severity of your reaction.
What dog breeds are hypoallergenic?
There are many dog breeds available that are considered to be hypoallergenic. Poodles, Bichon Frise, Shih Tzu’s, Bedlington terriers, and Afghan hounds are just a few examples.
It is important to conduct thorough research into different breeds as this will help you to assess which one is right for your situation.
Unfortunately, Golden Retrievers are not a hypoallergenic dog breed because they have a double coat that sheds a moderate amount throughout the year. During certain months, they shed rather excessively.
As we have mentioned, there are steps that you can take to keep the levels of dander inside your home to a minimum.
If you are an allergy sufferer but your allergy is mild, you may find owning a golden retriever bearable so long as they are washed and groomed regularly and kept out of certain rooms in your home.
Remember to research your desired dog breed thoroughly before arriving at a decision as to whether it is right for you.
If a golden retriever is not right for you, you are bound to find another breed that sheds less and produces less dander making them a more suitable companion.