Are you considering getting a Labradoodle as your next furry friend? These adorable dogs are a popular choice due to their friendly nature and hypoallergenic coat. However, one question that often comes up for potential owners is about shedding. Labradoodles are known for having low-shedding coats, but what does that really mean? In this post, we’re going to take a deep dive into the world of Labradoodle shedding and help you understand what you can expect as a pet owner.
What Exactly Is a Labradoodle?
A Labradoodle is actually a crossbreed between a Labrador Retriever and a Poodle. Fun fact: This dog breed was first developed in Australia in the 1980s as a guide dog for people with pet allergies. Labradoodles are known for their friendly and playful nature and intelligence.
Labradoodles come in a variety of sizes, ranging from miniature to standard, and can weigh 15–90 pounds depending on breed variation. These dogs make great family pets, they’re loveable, and very easy to train. They’re also low shedding, which is a big plus for people with allergies or those who don’t want to deal with excessive shedding.
Understanding Labradoodle Shedding
One of the main reasons why Labradoodles are so popular is because they’re low shedding. However, it’s important to understand that low shedding doesn’t mean “no shedding”. All dogs shed to some degree, but Labs just shed less than other breeds. Labradoodles are considered to be hypoallergenic because they produce fewer allergens than other breeds due to their low shedding coat. However, no dog breed is 100% hypoallergenic because they produce dander and shed some hair.
Labradoodles have a single-layered coat that is either curly, wavy, or straight. This coat doesn’t shed as much as a double-layered coat found in other breeds like the Golden Retriever. However, Labradoodles still shed some hair and dander, which can trigger allergies in some people. And the amount of shedding can vary depending on the type of coat, grooming habits, and other factors.
Types of Labradoodle Coats
Labradoodles come in three different types of coats: curly, wavy, and straight. The type of coat your Labradoodle has can affect how much they shed.
Curly-coated Labradoodles have a tight, curly coat that is the most hypoallergenic of the three types. These dogs shed the least amount of hair and dander, making them a great choice for people with allergies.
These Labradoodles have a looser curl that is less hypoallergenic than the curly coat. They tend to shed more hair and dander than their curly-coated counterparts, but still shed less than a straight-coated Labradoodle.
And lastly, the straight-coated Labradoodles have a flat, straight coat that sheds the most of the three types. Straight-coated Labradoodles aren’t recommended for people with allergies or those who don’t want to deal with excessive shedding (or grooming for that matter).
Factors That Affect Labradoodle Shedding
While Labradoodles are generally low-shedding, there are several factors that can affect how much they shed. These include:
As mentioned earlier, the type of coat your Labradoodle has can affect how much they shed. Curly-coated Labradoodles shed the least amount of hair and dander, while straight-coated Labradoodles shed the most.
Labradoodles are a crossbreed, which means their shedding tendencies can be influenced by their parents’ breeds. So for example, if your Labradoodle has more Labrador Retriever in their genes, they may shed more than a Labradoodle with more Poodle genes.
A healthy diet can help reduce shedding in dogs. Feeding your Labradoodle a high-quality dog food, be it kibble or wet food, that is rich in essential fatty acids (like fish oil) can help keep their coat healthy and reduce shedding. And of course, you can always supplement their diet as well.
Regular grooming can help reduce shedding in Labradoodles. Brushing your dog’s coat regularly (at least once a week) can help remove loose hair and prevent matting (which is common with these pups). Bathing your dog every 6 to 8 weeks can also help keep their coat clean and healthy, and it helps to keep the potential for pest infestation (i.e., ticks and fleas) down.
Certain health conditions can cause excessive shedding in dogs. If you notice your Labradoodle shedding more than usual, it’s important to take them to the vet to rule out any underlying health issues. The vet may run some blood tests and will almost always ask about your dog’s diet. They may even recommend certain dog food brands or supplements to help with this issue.
How to Groom a Labradoodle
Grooming is an important part of owning a Labradoodle, because not grooming them can lead to serious issues with their coat and skin. Regular grooming can help keep your dog’s coat healthy and reduce shedding. Here are some tips for grooming your Labradoodle.
Labradoodles should be brushed regularly to prevent matting and reduce shedding. A slicker brush or comb can be used to remove loose hair and tangles. Brushing your dog’s coat at least once a week can help keep their coat healthy and reduce shedding. It’ll also make it easier for future brushing – the less you do it, the more matted it’ll become.
Labradoodles should be bathed every 6 to 8 weeks to keep their coat clean and healthy. You can bathe your dog more if needed. Use a mild dog shampoo that is specifically formulated for dogs with sensitive skin. Avoid using human shampoos, as they can dry out your dog’s skin. Be sure to brush your dog’s coat after bathing and dry it thoroughly to reduce matting.
Labradoodles should be clipped every 6 to 8 weeks to keep their coat from getting too long and matted. For example, if the fur in their paw pads gets too thick, it’ll make it difficult for them to keep their balance on smooth flooring. You can either do this yourself with special dog coat clippers or simply take your dog to a professional groomer. Note that you can also watch videos on YouTube to learn how to do this correctly without hurting your pup.
Labradoodles have floppy ears that can trap moisture and dirt, which can lead to ear infections. Clean your dog’s ears regularly with a cotton ball or soft cloth and a gentle ear cleaning solution. Also, check them regularly for infection and fleas and ticks.
Labradoodles should have their nails trimmed every 4 to 6 weeks to prevent them from getting too long and causing discomfort. Use a sharp pair of dog nail clippers and be careful not to cut the quick, which is the pink part of the nail that contains blood vessels. This is also something that you can do yourself with help of a few videos, or by simply sitting in on your next grooming session (if allowed).
Tips for Managing Labradoodle Shedding
While Labradoodles are low shedding, there’re still some things you can do to manage shedding in your home. Here are some tips:
Vacuuming your home regularly can help remove loose hair and dander from your carpets and furniture. Use a vacuum with a HEPA filter to trap allergens and prevent them from being released back into the air, which can make allergy sufferers worse.
Wash Bedding and Blankets
Washing your Labradoodle’s bedding and blankets regularly can help remove hair and dander from your home. Use a mild detergent and hot water to kill any allergens. It helps to keep your dog’s blankets, toys, bedding, and other linen separate from your bedding, as they can transmit infections and parasites.
Use Air Purifiers
Air purifiers can help remove allergens from the air and improve indoor air quality. Place one in the room where your Labradoodle spends the most time. Today you can buy a decent air purifier for about $40 online on sites like Amazon, Walmart, or Target.
Can Labradoodle Shedding Cause Any Allergy Issues?
While Labradoodles are considered hypoallergenic, they can still produce allergens that can trigger allergic reactions in some people. These allergens are found in the dog’s skin, saliva, and urine.
If you have allergies, it’s helpful to spend time with a Labradoodle before bringing one into your home. This can help you determine if you’re allergic to the dog.
So, if you’re allergic to dogs but still want to own a Labradoodle, consider getting one with a curly coat, as they shed the least amount of hair and dander.
Wrapping Things Up
Labradoodles are a great choice for people who want a friendly, playful, and hypoallergenic dog. While they do shed less than other breeds, it’s important to understand that they still shed some.
If you’re considering getting a Labradoodle, make sure you’re prepared to groom them regularly and manage shedding in your home. Spend time with a Labradoodle before bringing one into your home if you have allergies. Overall, Labradoodles make great family pets and are a wonderful addition to any home.
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