The Myth of a Hypoallergenic Dog
The story of a hypoallergenic dog is indeed a myth! No dog is completely hypoallergenic — but some bow-wows are less prone to aggravating allergy symptoms.
These dogs tend to have two things in common — they shed very little and don’t drool very much.
To learn more, check out this article — What Is a Hypoallergenic Dog?
The Jack Russell’s Coat
The breed’s coats can be broken up into three categories. The Jack Russell Terrier has either, a:
- Smooth coat.
- Broken coat.
- Rough/wire-haired coat
Their body has a double coat with a coarse texture. However, you will never see them with a wavy/curly coat.
How Much Do Jack Russells Shed?
Do Jack Russells shed a lot? Unfortunately, Jack Russells shed quite heavily all year round. And, this breed is known for shedding regardless of coat type — rough, smooth, or broken.
If you’re wondering whether the variation in coat makes a difference, the answer is no. They will shed just as much as any other coat variety.
How To Stop a Jack Russell from Shedding To Reduce Allergens
Regardless of the coat type, all Jack Russells will shed — due to their short hair — but you can manage it. Here’s how:
1. Establish a Grooming Routine, But Don’t Overdo It
In an attempt to reduce the spread of allergens, you may think that daily brushing and regular bathing can solve it, but often over-grooming can cause a Jack Russell to shed even more than before!
Ideally, a smooth-coated Jack Russell should be brushed around once a week, while rough-coated only really needs grooming around twice a year.
A good bristle brush or stripping comb is a fantastic way to remove any loose or broken hairs from their coat that would otherwise shed throughout your home. This can help reduce allergens massively.
2. Bath Using Dog-Friendly Shampoo
Depending on how dirty your JRT likes to get during outdoor activities, you should only need to bathe them every four to six weeks.
A quick bath using a doggy shampoo — don’t be tempted to use your own — from the neck down is all it takes to get them looking and smelling clean and fresh! What’s more, bathing will coax any loose hairs away in a controlled manner.
Introducing the routine of bathing from a young age can help to reduce the number of issues they may have in the future and make the whole experience easier for you and your tail-wagger.
3. Diet Is Key To Keeping On Top of Shedding
The other key element to help make your Jack Russell Terrier as hypoallergenic as possible is to watch their diet — a healthy dog equals a healthy coat, and less shedding.
Due to their high energy levels, they need a rich, highly nutritious diet full of animal protein, fat, and nutrients. Their small size makes it very easy to overfeed and cause issues such as obesity without the right timing and portion control.
Typically for a Jack Russell, you want to give them two meals a day and offer a couple of treats. Too much dry food could lower their energy levels causing bloating and overfullness, so a blend of wet and dry food proportionate to their body weight is best to keep them healthy and reduce excess shedding.
4. Top Up Their Food With Supplements
If you feel that your Jack Russell may be missing out on some key elements in their diet, you could always top it up with supplements such as omega 3 or omega 6. And, probiotics for dogs restore balance in the digestive system, which in turn, helps their body process nutrients to their fullest — keeping your Jack Russell’s coat in prime condition and lowering shedding.
If you’re looking for a long haired Jack Russell hypoallergenic alternative, the Schnauzer is a perfect companion. Like the JRT, the Schnauzer is very adaptable to new situations and a hunting dog, which means they also have a high prey drive.
The Schnauzer is also an excellent guard dog and has very similar traits to the Russell Terrier — such as alertness, intelligence, and fearlessness. But most importantly, one significant difference is that this pooch sheds very little, thus minimal dander to aggravate any allergies.
Another option may be the Scottish Terrier. Again, this breed is a natural hunter, so you will have to consider their high prey drive. The Scottish Terrier is a bit bigger than a Jack Russell in weight, but height-wise, it’s about the same.
A few personality traits in the Scottish Terrier mirror the JRT’s — being alert, independent, yet playful. But when it comes to intelligence, the Jack Russell is streets ahead of the Scottie, yet easy to train is level pegging.
The Scottish Terrier has a short, wiry coat that requires an average amount of grooming, but they are super low shedders — making them an ideal alternative if you’re an allergy sufferer.
Yorkshire Terriers are also a fantastic non-shedding breed. They’re incredibly cute and have stacks of energy and intelligence — similar to the Jack Russell. They’re also easy to train and super affectionate.
Slightly smaller in build — reaching eight to 9 inches in height and weighing four to 7 pounds — the Yorkie is a toy-sized breed that doesn’t demand as much exercise as the Jack Russell.
While the Yorkie has a fine coat with minimal shedding, be aware that this breed requires an awful lot of grooming to keep them looking good.
Alternatively, you may find your furry best friend in a Cockapoo! This Cocker Spaniel Poodle mix has inherited all the best features from both breeds — keeping the hypoallergenic, tightly-curled coat of a Poodle that many allergy sufferers love. They have a low shedding and drool level, which pairs perfectly with their affectionate nature.
They’re known as one of the most intelligent breeds and possess a huge desire to please. In short, training will be a much easier task than in comparison to a Jack Russell Terrier.
Suffering from pet allergies can feel like the end of any dog-related dreams. But just because the Jack Russell is a highly allergenic breed with its heavy levels of shedding, it doesn’t mean you have to say goodbye to the possibility of welcoming a pooch into your home.
The Russell’s traits are fairly universal characteristics. Hence, other bow-wows that are less prone to shedding can be just as rewarding to own — like the Scottie or the Yorkie.
So to answer the burning question, is the Jack Russell hypoallergenic? Unfortunately no, but there are several other breeds around that fit the same loyal, loveable, and intelligent traits, without the need to irritate your allergies!
Are Jack Russells Non Shedding?
No. This breed is known for shedding regardless of which coat type it has. But if you have your heart set on a Terrier, there are several with similar characteristics that are hypoallergenic. For example, a breed such as the Yorkshire Terrier may be more suited to your specific needs.
Is a Jack Russell a Good Family Dog?
Their active nature makes them an ideal family dog for households with children over the age of four. They’re adventurous, hunting dogs by nature with amazing intelligence and high energy levels.
Do Hairless Dogs Exist?
Yes! Dogs, such as the Chinese Crested, the Xoloitzcuintli, Peruvian Inca Orchid, and American Hairless Terrier are recognized as truly hairless dogs. However, there are other breeds seen as “hairless,” but have patches of hair on their heads or tails.
Is the Wire Hair Jack Russell Hypoallergenic?
No, unfortunately, all Jack Russells shed regardless of the type of coat they have. This means that they aren’t considered a hypoallergenic dog breed.
Which Dog Is the Most Hypoallergenic?
The original hypoallergenic dog is the Poodle due to its low dander, easy-to-care-for coat, and extremely low shedding. They’re easy to train and make amazing family pets. This is why they’ve been bred with a range of other breeds to produce mixes, such as the Labradoodle, Goldendoodle, and Aussiedoodle.
Is the Rough Coat Jack Russell Hypoallergenic?
The rough-coated Jack Russell sheds in much the same way as any other Jack Russell, meaning they are not hypoallergenic dogs.