Best small dogs that don’t shed – popular hypoallergenic breeds

Dogs are wonderful, loving animals that make great companions. One of the very few drawbacks of having a dog as a pet though is that they can shed a lot. That said, there are quite a few small dogs that don’t shed much at all (the so-called hyopallergenic breeds) and there are obvious advantages to choosing one of these breeds, especially if you suffer from allergies.

Here are some small dogs that don't shed.

Advantages of non-shedding small dogs

Dogs shed fur and also something called dander. Dander is a bit like dandruff, in that it is tiny bits of dead skin that come off the dog when it sheds its fur. The dander floats in the air and so it gets into our lungs as we breathe and this can cause allergic reactions in people who have allergies and asthma. These reactions can range from mild, such as sneezes and watery eyes, to severe reactions such as skin rashes and even asthma attacks.

So if you’re sensitive to allergens and/or have asthma, and you’re looking to get a dog, then it may be best to consider one of the small dog breeds that don’t shed much. The reason for this is that these non shedding small dogs are much less likely to be allergenic.

Another plus point to small dogs that don’t shed is that you have to spend a lot less time cleaning up after them, for example vacuuming the carpet or rug and removing dog hair from the sofa.

On the flip side, minimal shedding doesn’t necessarily mean easy to groom. You should be aware that you will have to spend more time maintaining the coats of non shedding small dogs to prevent them from becoming tatty and matted.

Small dog breeds that don’t shed

Below is a list of non shedding dogs. As this website is all about small fluffy dogs, the list does not include large or hairless dogs. It only contains fluffy small dogs that don’t shed.

For a complete list of non shedding dogs check out this page.

Most, but not all, of the small dog breeds that don’t shed are single-coated dogs – there is the odd example of low shedding double-coated breeds.

List of non shedding dogs

Bichon Frise

The beautiful Bichon Frise dog doesn't shed a lot

The Bichon Frise has a curly coat that doesn’t shed, but does require a lot of clipping and maintenance.

It will need the hair cutting every month as well as regular brushing to prevent tangles and matting.

Brussels Griffon

A cute example of the Brussels Griffon dog breed

The Brussels Griffon is a little dog with a huge personality that comes in two varieties: smooth coated and rough coated.

Rough coated Griffs don’t shed and just need a weekly brush and comb, along with a clipping every few months.

Smooth coated Griffs shed seasonally. This is typically for a couple of weeks in the spring and again in the fall. During this time, they will need brushing daily.

Cairn Terrier

A great example of the Cairn Terrier dog breed

Cairn Terriers shed very little and they require very little maintenance to keep the shedding under control.

The Cairn Terrier’s coat really just needs to be brushed several times a week to stop matting.


Picture of a beautiful Havanese dog against a blue background.

Despite their long hair, these small dogs don’t shed very much at all and are one of the best small dog breeds for allergy sufferers.

Regular brushing will reduce the amount that the Havanese sheds even further.

Lhasa Apso

Picture of a beautiful Lhasa Apso dog.

The Lhasa Apso is a single-coated breed with long hair. Because of the long growth cycle of the hair, the Lhasa Apso sheds very little.

The long coat of the Lhasa Apso will, however, need to be brushed and combed daily.


The Maltese is a non-shedding small dog

The Maltese is another of the small dogs that don’t shed very much at all.

If you have your Maltese’s hair cut short, the coat will just need a good brush about once a week. If the hair is long, it will need a daily brush to stop matting.

Norwich Terrier

A gorgeous Norwich Terrier dog, one of the non-shedding small dog breeds

The Norwich terrier is one of the most popular non shedding small dog breeds.

The Norwich Terrier is a very light shedder despite being double-coated. The coat does need a daily comb and brush.

Scottish Terrier

A picture of a black Scottish Terrier dog

The Scottie is a double-coated dog that sheds virtually no hair at all; much less than most other breeds.

The coat does requires regular brushing.

Shih Tzu

The Shih Tzu is a small dog that doesn't shed a lot

Shih Tzu shedding is very minimal. You’ll sometimes find a bit of long hair but apart from that you can think of Shih Tzus as non shedding small dogs.

You’ll need to brush and comb the coat daily to prevent tangles and matting.

Silky Terrier

A beautiful picture of a Silky Terrier dog

The Silky Terrier is another small dog that doesn’t shed.

You will need to brush and comb the Silky Terrier’s coat daily because it’s very prone to matting and tangling if it isn’t looked after carefully.

Tibetan Terrier

A gorgeous Tibetan Terrier dog

The Tibetan Terrier is considered to be a low shedding dog as it doesn’t shed daily.

Tibetan Terriers do however shed on a yearly basis. The coat requires a lot of grooming and brushing every two or three days.

Toy Poodle

A gorgeous picture of a cute toy poodle puppy

The Toy Poodle sheds little to no hair.

Like most of the other non shedding small dogs, their coat requires a lot of grooming and brushing. They will need grooming every four to six weeks.

West Highland Terrier

A cute little West Highland Terrier dog

The West Highland Terrier is a very low maintenance small dog breed that doesn’t shed very much at all, making it a good choice for those with allergies.

They do, however, require regular brushing and grooming every six weeks or so.

Yorkshire Terrier

The Yorkshire Terrier doesn't shed much at all

The Yorkie is yet another of the small dogs that don’t shed very much at all.

If the coat is clipped then it’ll need at least a weekly brush and comb but more likely it’ll need daily care. If the coat is long then it’ll need a lot of care.


While there’s no breed of dog that does not shed at all, the above list of popular low shedding small dogs is worth looking at if you are sensitive to allergens or suffer from asthma. Not only are you less likely to suffer adverse reactions to these dogs, but you’ll spend less time cleaning up after them.

Even if you don’t suffer from allergies, one of these small dog breeds that don’t shed is still a great option as a pet as they are all friendly and loving, and most of all, irresistibly cute!

Small Dog Breeds That Don't Shed Infographic

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3 thoughts on “Best small dogs that don’t shed – popular hypoallergenic breeds”

  1. I love big dogs too (all dogs are great!), but I find the small dogs so cute. Of course, that can lead to problems if you’re not careful – it’s so easy to spoil them and let them get away with things you wouldn’t necessarily let a bigger dog!

  2. Not to worry about the sturdiness of these little guys. A number of small (terrier) breeds have been used to kill vermin, Jack Russells among them. They will catch and kill barn rats at an amazing pace-dozens in an hour. They are fast, eager and alert. Affectionate but not a lap dog (mostly because they are almost always on “alert” for small, brown furry things!)


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