Do Morkies shed? No… and yes. ALL creatures shed to some degree, but when it comes to low shedding dogs, Morkies are among the lowest of the low 🙂
When it comes to shedding, that is.
If we’re comparing dogs, then the Morkie is right up there, with dogs who are the MOST hypoallergenic, and the MOST allergy free.
They may not be perfectly so, but Morkies are every bit as hypoallergenic and allergy-free as any dog, be it Poodle, Schnauzer or Shih Tzu.
That’s because all those breeds have hair, not fur. So there’s no undercoat that’s light, fluffy and always shedding. Shed fur carries with it dander from the skin, along with dust and micro debris. This is a big problem if you have allergies.
Do Morkies shed?
Dogs with hair instead of fur, lose that hair just like we do, one strand at a time.
The American Kennel Club says this about hypoallergenic dogs:
While no dog is 100% hypoallergenic, there are a variety of breeds that do well with allergy sufferers. These dogs have a predictable, non-shedding coat which produces less dander. Dander, which is attached to pet hair, is what causes most pet allergies in humans.
They’re quoting from the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology.
Instead of a double layer of fur like most dogs, Morkies have a single layer or coat that is hair, like humans. Each hair grows from a follicle, which eventually dies and the hair drops off.
Most breeds have double coats, including the Collie, German Shepherd, Golden Retriever, Lab, and most terriers. Double coated dogs actually have three types of hair – whiskers, guard hair, and undercoat. The soft, fluffy undercoat sheds continually or at certain times of the year, in significant amounts.
Maltese, Yorkies and therefore Morkies have hair, not fur so don’t shed like most dogs.
Besides being hypoallergenic or not, there are some other differences between hair and fur on a dog.
FUR provides warmth and cooling insulation during hot weather. HAIR is simply decorative.
FUR protects dogs better from insect bites, sun and scrapes, and bumps. HAIR doesn’t offer that kind of protection.
What does it mean to be allergic to dogs?
Pet allergies typically appear as coughing and wheezing, red, itchy eyes and a runny, stuffed nose, or you could suffer from raised, red patches of skin (hives), Eczema, or Itchy skin.
When it comes to allergies, keep in mind:
- Two dogs of the same breed can each give off very different levels of allergen.
- Dander – flakes of skin – is a harmless substance, but it is the #1 cause of allergic reactions for people allergic to dogs
- Dogs’ coats carry lots of other allergens, including pollen and outside dust
Dealing with Allergies
People handle allergies to dogs in different ways:
- completely avoid them – pretty tough, since more than 50% of homes in Canada, the U.S.A, and Great Britain have one or more dogs
- clean fanatically, and use a HEPA filter on your vacuum to catch the extra small allergens
- use air filters throughout your living space
- keep the dog out of your bedroom
- speak to your doctor about using antihistamines and decongestants to relieve allergy symptoms. Some people find that allergy shots are a good option, but they take years for a full course of treatment
Regular brushing can be beneficial, but experts say bathing then dog more often doesn’t usually help.
Another irritant for allergy sufferers: dog saliva
Some people are allergic to the saliva or urine of a dog (or other animals) so the coat has no bearing at all on their suffering. Even the American Hairless Terrier wouldn’t work for them.
You can read more about these energetic, alert little dogs at the AKC site here.
The American Hairless Terrier
Dog hair and dander are the triggers for nearly all pet allergies…. or are they?
Pet allergy is an allergic reaction to proteins found in an animal’s skin cells, saliva or urine. But how much is caused by shedding fur?
Dueling experts: conflicting opinions about dog allergies
The renowned Mayo Clinic says that most often, pet allergy is triggered by exposure to the dead flakes of skin (dander) a pet sheds along with fur.
But the Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy (phew) says that the main source of dogs allergen is saliva. So-called hypoallergenic cats and dogs may shed less fur than shedding types, but no breed is truly hypoallergenic.
I’d agree with the Mayo Clinic, since pet dander, being airborne, can remain in the environment longer and be recirculated by the slightest movement of air. It’s so small it easily collects in furniture and can stick to your clothes.