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Is An Airedale Terrier Hypoallergenic? Vet-Reviewed Facts

Kristin Hitchcock

By Kristin Hitchcock

Airedale terrier dog on a beige background

Vet approved

Dr. Marta Vidal-Abarca Photo

Reviewed & Fact-Checked By

Dr. Marta Vidal-Abarca

BVSc GPCert (Ophthal) MRCVS (Veterinarian)

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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Airedale Terriers are not hypoallergenic. However, there is no such thing as a truly hypoallergenic dog1, as all dogs produce allergens—the substances that cause dog allergies. It’s a common misconception that dog hair causes allergies, but this is not the case. Therefore, how much a dog sheds isn’t an indication of how likely the dog is to cause allergies. 

Read on below to find out more.

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What Does Hypoallergenic Mean?

A 2011 study found that there was no difference in the amount of allergens found in homes with so-called “hypoallergenic” and “non-hypoallergenic” dog breeds. Therefore, the claim that one dog breed causes fewer allergy signs than another isn’t rooted in fact. Instead, it seems to be more of a marketing strategy. All dogs produce allergens, and the difference between the amount of allergens produced by one or the other lies more in differences between individuals rather than between breeds. 

That said, Airedale Terriers do have a wiry coat that sheds lightly. Therefore, they won’t leave quite as much dog fur around your home. They still produce dander, though, which is one of the main vehicles for allergens causing pet allergies.

These dogs will likely still cause allergy symptoms. However, some dogs do produce slightly different proteins than others. For instance, only intact males produce the protein Can f 5. If you’re only allergic to this protein, you can be around neutered males and females perfectly fine. You can ask your doctor for an allergen test that checks for each canine protein individual to find out exactly what you’re allergic to.

airedale terrier dog standing outdoors in the forest
Image Credit: otsphoto, Shutterstock

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Are Airedales Good for Allergy Sufferers?

As explained, Airedales are not particularly good for allergy sufferers compared to other dog breeds. They shed less, however, since dog allergens are also carried on dander. This fact is not really relevant for allergy-sufferers. Therefore, how much they shed does very little to indicate how likely they are to trigger allergies.

Airedales don’t drool, which is an added plus. Drool also contains many allergens that can cause dog-related allergies, so dogs that drool may cause more allergy symptoms than dogs that do not. The only way to know for sure if a dog will cause allergy symptoms for you is to hang out with them. However, even this isn’t completely foolproof, as some allergy symptoms may not show up until months later.

Sometimes, those with other allergies may do fine with their canine as long as their other allergens are controlled, and this is linked to the allergy symptom threshold.

Do Airedales Shed?

Airedale Terriers do shed moderately. However, they shed less than most other large dogs, like Labrador Retrievers and Siberian Huskies. Therefore, they are often billed as a lower-shedding option for those who want a bigger dog.

These dogs shed particularly badly twice a year, usually during fall and spring. This shedding is partially initiated by the day/night cycle, so even if you live in a mild climate, your canine will still shed more during this period.

You’ll need to strip your dog’s coat during these heavy shedding seasons. Not only does this prevent shedding, but it also helps your dog’s coat remain well-kept. Otherwise, it can get long, thick, and unruly. Stripping is a bit different from brushing. You can do it yourself. However, it can be challenging to do correctly at first without injuring your dog or messing up their coat. Plus, purchasing the necessary equipment can be expensive.

Therefore, it’s often recommended that you seek out a professional to take care of this for you. Remember, this takes time and isn’t an easy skill to learn. It isn’t odd for groomers to charge more for stripping than they may for other services. It’s also important to find a groomer who has experience with stripping, as this isn’t a skill you can learn on the job.

Airedale Terrier on grass
Image Credit: Lumia Studio, Shutterstock

Are Airedale Terriers 100% Hypoallergenic?

No. As explained above, Airedale Terriers are not hypoallergenic, even if they shed less than other dogs. Unfortunately, all dogs create allergens that can cause a reaction in sensitive people.

You may hear some people claim that certain dogs are hypoallergenic. However, this isn’t backed by any science. As we’ve discussed, scientific studies have failed to prove this. Therefore, you shouldn’t believe any claims out there about hypoallergenic dog breeds. Instead, we recommend visiting your doctor to understand and try to manage your allergies. Once you have done this, you can see if one individual dog causes fewer allergy signs for you.

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Final Thoughts

Because they don’t shed much, Airedale terriers are sometimes called hypoallergenic. However, this isn’t necessarily the case. These dogs may not shed as much, but they do produce allergens that are carried out by dander

Therefore, if you have dog allergies, we don’t recommend choosing an Airedale Terrier just because they don’t shed very much. Instead, it works best to visit your doctor, try to know what triggers your allergy signs, and possibly get an allergen test to learn exactly what dog allergen you’re allergic to. Based on this information and the compatibility with a specific dog, you may decide to try to share your life with a doggy companion.

Featured Image Credit: dezy, Shutterstock

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