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indoor pets – a hairy consideration

As dogs move out of the backyard and into the house, hair shedding and cleanliness become increasingly important. Our research showed hair shedding was the number one problem for people who own a dog or cat in smaller spaces. Cat owners had more of a problem with hair shedding than dog owners. When our dogs and cats lived primarily outdoors they could shed hair like crazy and it rarely mattered. These days, with pets spending more time indoors, and particularly those living in the city and/or apartments, it clearly has the potential to be a major concern.

It’s no coincidence that many of the dog breeds considered suitable for small spaces are non or low shedding. Some dog breeds are said to have no shedding at all – but be aware that these dogs all need regular grooming and/or clipping to maintain their long, fi  ne coats: Bedlington Terriers, Bichon Frise, Lhasa Apso, Maltese, Poodles, Schnauzers, Shih Tzus and Yorkshire Terriers. Low-shedding dog breeds include Australian Silky Terriers, Australian Terriers, Basenji, Cairn Terriers, Chinese Crested Dogs, Scottish Terriers and West Highland White Terriers. Chihuahuas, Whippets, Greyhounds and Italian Greyhounds all shed hair but their fine coats mean less hair and little grooming. Some of the designer “Oodle” crossbreeds are non or low-shedding, but not all. If you want a non or low-sheddding crossbred you should discuss this with the breeder.

Devon and Cornish Rex cats have very sparse coats and as a consequence shed far less hair than other cat breeds. The coat length of cat breeds can range from short through to long, and they will typically shed hair and require grooming relative to their coat length – the longer the coat, the more regular grooming will be required. In the common problems and tips to help you solve them section we provide you with tips to help manage hair shedding.