Kids and dogs are a natural combination. For children with sensitivity to dog hair, dog ownership can be a problem. Although there are no dogs that are 100 per cent shed-free, there are some excellent choices of dogs considered non-shedding and good with kids. Careful consideration can help you make the right choice and allow your child to enjoy his dog without suffering the effects of shedding dog hair.
The Havanese, a native Cuban dog, has a long, wavy, silky coat. He is considered a non-shedding dog. The Havanese loves kids and delights in play. Health problems in the Havanese include luxating patellas, cataracts, heart problems and cancer. The lifespan of a Havanese is 14 to 15 years.
Poodles come in three sizes--toy, miniature and standard. Due to size, the miniature and standard varieties would be best with children. Poodles come in white, black, chocolate, apricot and silver. Their curly, dense coats are considered non-shedding. Poodles require regular, professional grooming to prevent mats. Both standard and miniature poodles live approximately 12 to 15 years. Poodles suffer from ear infections, eye problems, heart disease, diabetes, epilepsy and skin allergies.
Portuguese Water Dog
The Portuguese water dog was the presidential choice when Barack Obama selected a dog for his allergic daughter. This breed needs lots of exercise and loves water. The dog is a delightful companion for children. His loosely or tightly curled coat comes in white, brown, black and combination colours. It requires daily combing and clipping several times a year. Some Portuguese water dogs are susceptible to hip dysplasia and a fatal nerve disease. This breed lives 10 to 14 years.
The schnauzer is intelligent and makes a great watchdog. The miniature is the most popular of the three sizes available. An active, playful dog, the schnauzer gets along well with children. His wiry coat does not shed. He requires daily combing and twice yearly professional grooming. The miniature has a lifespan of about 15 years and is prone to diabetes, liver problems, kidney stones, eye problems and skin disorders. This breed comes in white, black, salt and pepper and black and silver.
Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier
The Wheaten is a friendly, playful, hypoallergenic dog. He is a larger dog that loves playing with kids. This breed's non-shedding coat requires regular grooming. His lifespan is 12 to 15 years. He is known to suffer from protein wasting disease and flea allergies.
The Bichon is a lively, intelligent dog that adores children. His long, silky, non-shedding hair comes in white and cream. Regular grooming is necessary to prevent tangles. The Bichon Frise lives 15 or more years and is prone to skin and ear problems, cataracts and epilepsy.