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Are Great Danes Hypoallergenic? Tips for People with Allergies

Unpack the myth versus reality surrounding Great Danes and their hypoallergenic potential. This article explores the breed’s compatibility with allergy sufferers, providing clarity for those considering a Great Dane as their next pet.

Great Danes are not hypoallergenic. However, their short coats may trigger fewer allergies compared to breeds with longer hair like Golden Retrievers or German Shepherds.

Funny enough – there is no dog that is truly 100% hypoallergenic. The breeds that do receive this distinction are noted as such because they tend to shed very little or not at all, and as a result, cause fewer allergy issues with people.

Do Great Danes cause allergies?

Most people who are allergic to a dog are allergic to the dander that they shed or their saliva. Since Great Danes do shed a lot, they will leave their dander around your house, causing your allergic reactions. 

These dogs do not have a double coat that they shed all the time but a shorter coat that they tend to shed only a few times a year. 

During the spring and fall, you will notice that your Great Dane sheds a little more. This is when your Great Dane will cause you to have more allergic reactions.

When this does occur, you can try brushing them daily to help speed up the process. Something like the Kong ZoomGroom is perfect for helping to pull out these loose hairs without causing damage to their skin.

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Do Great Danes shed a lot?

Great Danes do tend to shed. They tend not to shed as other popular large breeds dogs such as German Shepherds, Labs, and Golden Retrievers.

Great Danes have a short, thin, single-layer coat, whereas many of the worst shedders have thick double coats.

This causes them to leave even more hair around your house.  When your dog sheds their hair, they are leaving the dander that they have all over your house.

Shedding is a needed cycle that your dog’s hair has to go through. Your dog’s hair will grow to a certain length and stop. These hairs will eventually die and fall out. The hair follicles will be replaced with a new strain of hair, repeating the hair growth cycle.

Younger dogs do tend to shed more since they are also more active. Between rubbing up against people or objects, and scratching or licking themselves, this can result in increased shedding.

What Factors Contribute to My dog Shedding

If your dog is shedding more than normal, here are some of the most common sources for increased shedding:

  • Poor Diet:  The food that your Great Dane is eating plays a large role in their coat.

  • Seasons of the year: Your dog will shed more in the spring and fall of the year.  This is when your dog is losing their winter coat or their spring coat and developing their new coat. 

  • Health issue: There are some health-related issues that will cause your Great Dane to shed more. Diseases like hypothyroidism or Cushing’s disease will cause your dog to lose their hair and shed more.

  • Parasites: If your Great Dane has fleas and ticks, it can cause them to itch more, causing your Great Dane’s hair to fall out.

What big dog breeds are hypoallergenic?

If you are looking for a large dog that is also hypoallergenic, consider a Standard poodle or one of the Poodle mixes. 

Many breeders are crossing a poodle with almost any dog to make a “doodle” breed. There are even Great Dane-doodles that would be more hypoallergenic than a Great Dane.

What is the best dog for a person with allergies?

If you have allergies, it would be best for you to have a dog that does not shed a lot. These dogs tend to need to be groomed often because their hair continues to grow. 

Common hypoallergenic dog breeds include:

  • Poodles
  • Schnauzers
  • “Doodle” dog breeds such as Labradoodle or Goldendoodle

How to help decrease my Great Dane’s Dander

There are many things that you can do to help decrease the amount of dander that your Great Dane gives off, thus making them more hypoallergenic. 

  • Baths: Giving your Great Dane frequent baths will help remove the excess hair and dander that is on their skin.  You can bathe your Great Dane every few weeks or sometimes more often to help. Make sure to use a gentle shampoo to avoid drying out their skin.
  • Omega Fatty Acid Supplements: Omega 3 fatty acids are a supplement for helping repair the skin barrier.  These supplements are given daily to help your Great Dane skin be healthier.  Omega Fatty Acid supplements are great at helping keep your Great Danes skin and fur healthy and shiny.
  • CBD oil: CBD or cannabidiol is a great supplement to give to your Great Dane with skin problems and help with Shedding. CBD has been shown to help repair the natural skin barrier. If your Great Dane is itching, this can cause damage to the skin; CBD oil can also help with any pain or inflammation from your pet’s itching.
  • Changing their Diet: Great Danes can be allergic to their food, making them itch and lose hair.  Your Great Dane may need a special diet to help with their itching. They will need to switch to a protein that they have never eaten before, such as rabbit, venison, or duck. Many limited-food diets are a great choice for a Great Dane with food allergies.
  • Oatmeal Shampoo: If your Great Dane has dry, flaky skin, it will cause them to lose hair more often. Your dog may even need a special shampoo to help.  The oatmeal shampoo will help keep your Great Dane’s skin from becoming dry and keep its fur healthy and happy.

What Can I Do to Help my Allergic Response?

While there are a few things that you can do at home to help prevent you from coming into contact with your Great Dane’s dander.

  • Take Allergy medications: If you suffer from allergies to your Great Dane, you can take allergy medications such as Benadryl or Zyrtec. These medications will decrease your allergic response to your Great Dane.

  • Wash Your Hands Often: Washing your hands after playing with your Great Dane will help remove the dander from your hands. It is best to wash your hands before touching your eyes, too, as this causes a stronger allergic reaction.

  • Vacuum your house:  If your Great Dane is shedding a lot, make sure to keep up with vacuuming! Preventing the loose hairs and dandruff from accumulating will greatly help with your allergies.

  • Preventing them from getting on the furniture:  While it may not be easy, you could also consider training your Great Dane to stay off the furniture as this will help to limit your contact exposure. Using leather furniture can help remediate this issue as well and hair does not stick to its surface as easily.

  • Brush your dog more often: Brushing your Great Dane more frequently will help remove any loose hair. Using a brush like the Kong ZoomGroom will help any loose or dead hair from your Great Dane.

  • Remove any Carpet in your house: Some people will go so far as to remove any carpet in their house. These are common places for dog hair to get stuck.  This will help decrease the amount of dog hair that is loose in your house without having to constantly clean the carpets.

Final Thoughts on Hypoallergenic Dogs

While Great Dane’s are not hypoallergenic, there are many things that you can do to help prevent your Great Dane from shedding and their dander in your house. 

By following these few tips and tricks you and live with your Great Dane even if you have severe pet allergies!

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