Are Golden Retrievers Hypoallergenic? (It’s A Complicated Answer)

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Golden retrievers are not hypoallergenic dogs.

However, that doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t have a golden retriever if you’re allergic to dogs.

In this post, you’ll learn:

  • What a hypoallergenic dog is (and why most people misunderstand the true meaning)
  • Whether or not you can have a golden retriever if you have allergies
  • The biggest mistakes people make when it comes to getting a dog when they have allergies
  • How to prevent dog allergies in babies
  • And much more

Let’s dive in!

What Is A Hypoallergenic Dog

Most people have an incorrect understanding of the term “hypoallergenic.”

“Hypo” means low, so a hypoallergenic dog is one that releases a low amount of allergens.

Now when someone is allergic to dogs, they’re allergic to a protein found in dog’s dander, saliva, and urine.

Dog dander is flakes of skin, which are mostly released on the fur when a dog sheds.

So when we talk about hypoallergenic dogs, it essentially means dogs that don’t shed very much, so it doesn’t cause too bad of a reaction in people.

3 Hypoallergenic Dog Myths

Here are three popular myths that most people get wrong about hypoallergenic dogs:

Myth #1: Hypoallergenic dogs mean you won’t have any allergic reactions to them

“Hypo” means low, not zero.

So hypoallergenic dogs can still cause allergic reactions, but they’re known for being less severe or even unnoticeable.

Myth #2: People are allergic to dog fur

People are actually allergic to a protein found in dog dander, urine, and saliva, not the dog’s fur.

However, dander is often transmitted via shedded fur, so it’s an understandable mixup.

Myth #3: If you’re allergic to dogs, you’re allergic to all dogs

Just because you’re allergic to one dog, doesn’t mean you’re allergic to all dogs, which brings us to the next point…

Can I Have A Golden Retriever If I Have Allergies?

golden retriever hypoallergenic

If you have dog allergies, but you want a golden retriever, there is still hope.

For one, if you’re allergic to dogs, you may not be allergic to golden retrievers.

That might sound like a weird statement, but according to this article, it’s possible for people to be allergic to some breeds but not others.

This is the case with me.

I’m allergic to labs and some other dog breeds, but not golden retrievers.

But if you are allergic to golden retrievers, your allergies may be manageable, and there are some things you can do to reduce your reactions.

First, you’ll need to understand your allergies a little better.

How To Test If You’re Allergic To Golden Retrievers

If you’re allergic to dogs, but really want one, then talk to your doctor.

You may be able to get tests done to see how allergic you are, and whether or not it’ll be manageable.

You might also want to find someone with a golden retriever and spend some time with the dog and in their home to see how you react.

But even if you have an allergic reaction to dogs, it may be treatable.

Dog Allergy Treatments

Thanks to technology, there are some treatments available for dog allergies.

WebMD says your doctor may recommend treating dog allergies with:

  • Antihistamines
  • Decongestants
  • Nasal sprays

Your doctor may also give you allergy shots to help you better manage your allergies.

Again, talk to your doctor for more information about this.

5 Tips To Reduce Allergies With A Golden Retriever

golden retriever hypo allergenic

Treating your allergic reaction isn’t the only way to handle your dog allergies.

You can also try to manage the source of your allergies: your dog’s dander.

Here are five ways to reduce the dander around your house, which can help with your allergies:

Tip #1: Keep your golden retriever healthy

This should always be a top priority for the dog’s sake, but it can also help with your allergies.

By feeding your golden retriever a high-quality food, reducing their anxiety with proper socialization and exercise, keeping them tick and flea-free, and minimizing their own allergies, you’ll be able to keep the dander levels around the house relatively low.

This is because anxious and unhealthy dogs can shed more, and dogs with fleas, ticks, or allergies will scratch more (and give off more dander).

Tip #2: Keep your house clean

With regular vacuuming, sweeping, mopping and an air filter, you can keep the amount of dander in your house as low as possible.

Tip #3: Don’t have carpet

Unless you plan on changing floors soon, this may be more of a fact than an actionable tip.

But carpet is more likely to store dander and be harder to clean than hard floors like wood or vinyl.

Tip #4: Don’t let your golden in your bedroom

Sleeping in dog dander might not be the best for your allergies, so not letting them in the bedroom might help.

Of course, you can still have fun with them in the other rooms and outside.

Tip #5: Don’t let them lick you

Some golden retrievers love to give kisses, but dog saliva may trigger an allergic reaction, so try to avoid kisses from your golden if you can.

P.S. Getting a golden retriever puppy? Check out the Golden Retriever Puppy Handbook!

Are Mini Golden Retrievers Hypoallergenic?

are mini golden retrievers hypoallergenic

Mini golden retrievers are a combination of golden retriever, cocker spaniel, poodle, and or goldendoodle.

Because there is some poodle in there, they might shed less, and therefore could be more hypoallergenic than purebred golden retrievers.

Another factor that could add to them being hypoallergenic is the fact that they’re smaller.

They’ll have less skin than regular goldens, and therefore less dander.

Which Dog Breeds Are Hypoallergenic?

Since you know golden retrievers aren’t hypoallergenic, and mini golden retrievers may or may not be…

You might be wondering which breeds are hypoallergenic.

There are lots of them, but here are a few of the more popular hypoallergenic breeds, according to the AKC:

  • Poodle
  • Bichon
  • Schnauzer
  • Wheaten terrier
  • Yorkshire terrier

Can You Prevent Dog Allergies In Your Children?

prevent dog allergies in children

Can you imagine how bad it would feel if you had a child that was allergic to dogs and you had to give away the baby dog?

I’ll be honest, that’s one of my biggest fears, but here’s some great news:

According to this study, if the mother has a dog or cat in the house while she’s pregnant, the baby is less likely to have pet allergies than if the mother didn’t have a dog or cat in the house.

How crazy and awesome is that?!

2 Big No-No’s For People With Dog Allergies

If you have dog allergies but you want a dog, you might have heard this advice:

  • Bathe them often so they’ll have less dander
  • Keep them outside so there’ll be less dander in the house

If this is your strategy to deal with your dog allergies, don’t get a golden retriever.

For one, bathing them too often will reduce the natural oils in their coat, which could lead to skin infections or other skin problems.

And the second piece of advice is bad because golden retrievers love to be with their families.

They’re social dogs, so sticking them outside in the backyard alone is one of the worst things you can do to them.

Why You Shouldn’t Get A Golden Retriever If You Have Allergies

Most of this post has been about how to find a way to own a golden retriever if you have allergies.

But the truth is, if you have severe allergies, it just might not work.

And that’s ok.

They can be tough for people with allergies because they’re big, they shed a lot, and they’re big lickers.

Golden retrievers aren’t for everyone, and if you can’t get one because of your allergies, it’ll be ok.

There are plenty of other ways to find love and fulfillment, and it would be terrible if you got a golden retriever and stuck them outside or had to give them up because they weren’t a good fit for you.


golden retriever puppy hypoallergenic

Golden retrievers are not hypoallergenic.

They shed a lot, which spreads dander everywhere, and they love to lick their humans.

But if you really want a golden and you’re allergic to them, there are some ways to reduce the dander in your home or treat your allergies to make it work.

Have any questions about allergies and golden retrievers?

What have your allergy experiences been like with your golden?

Let me know down in the comments!

And if you want to learn more about whether or not a golden retriever is right for you, take this quiz!

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