havanese dog

As members of the Bichon dog family, Havanese dogs have naturally thick double coats that don’t shed much. This minimal shedding helps reduce the amount of saliva-covered fur that ends up all over your house. The loose fur gets caught in their outer coat, and since it’s a dog’s saliva that most people are allergic to, fewer allergens become airborne.

While the Havanese are considered hypoallergenic due to their minimal drooling and shedding, they can still set off allergies in some people. If you’re highly sensitive to dog allergens, your Havanese puppy might make you have a runny nose and itchy eyes. They are, however, known to cause fewer allergic reactions than other breeds.

If you’re looking for a dog breed that is less likely to set off your allergies, here’s everything that you need to know about Havanese dogs.

What Are Havanese Dogs?

A companion and toy breed, the Havanese is the only breed native to Cuba. Their ancestors originated in Tenerife, but the Havanese wasn’t developed properly until the Spanish began traveling to Cuba in 1492.

By the 1800s, the Havanese became a favorite companion for the aristocracy, including Queen Victoria. At this point in their history, the Havanese began finding their way to Europe as more and more travelers fell in love with the breed. They were introduced to the U.S.A. by Cuban refugees in 1959.

The Havanese is naturally happy-go-lucky and adore being the center of attention in both small and large families. Along with their strong loyalty making them great watchdogs, they have strong noses and have been used to sniff out mold and termites. Their dedication to their families, trainability, and hypoallergenic nature have even found the breed a place among therapy and service dogs.

What Are Dog Allergies?

Many people believe that dog fur sets off allergies. While dogs that shed frequently can trigger more reactions, it’s not the fur that the immune system is reacting to, but rather the saliva left behind when your dog licks themselves.

Dog saliva and urine contain two proteins called Can f 1 and Can f 2. It’s these proteins that cause canine-related allergies, and it’s why dogs that drool frequently also set off allergies. Your dog spreads these proteins throughout their fur when they lick themselves and then shed dander and loose fur around the house.

Even if the saliva covering your dog’s skin is dry, dander and loose fur can still cause allergies. Once the dander and fur are airborne, you’ll be breathing them in along with any allergens coated on them. Having an air purifier designed to reduce pet allergens in the air, vacuuming frequently, and keeping your dog out of your bedroom can all help reduce your allergies.

Havanese outdoors
Photo courtesy of Shutterstock

Are Havanese Dogs Hypoallergenic?

All dogs can set off allergic reactions in people who are sensitive to the allergens in their saliva. What makes Havanese dogs less likely to set off allergies is the fact that they produce fewer of the allergens that cause the immune system to overreact.

The Havanese is a breed that doesn’t drool much, which minimizes the amount of saliva that can come into contact with you. Their thick, silky coats also don’t shed excessively. When the Havanese does shed, the loose fur often gets caught in their dense outer coat rather than ending up floating around your house.

Since their saliva-covered fur and dander are often trapped in their coat, the Havanese is considered a good choice for an allergy-friendly pet. With fewer airborne allergens for you to breathe in, there’s less risk of your immune system overreacting.

Final Thoughts

Havanese dogs might not be completely hypoallergenic, but they are considered less likely to set off allergies in people who suffer from dog allergies. This is due to their limited drooling and shedding. With less of their saliva — and fewer Can f 1 and Can f 2 proteins — becoming airborne due to dander and shed fur, there are fewer allergens for sensitive immune systems to react to.

They might still set off allergies in some people, though, as no dog breed is completely hypoallergenic. Overall, though, they are considered a good choice for pet-allergy sufferers.

Featured Image Credit: Pixabay