Bichon Frise dogs are a cheerful breed that is as playful as they are gentle. This breed originated in France and Spain, however, it has become popular among dog owners all over the world.
The Bichon Frise is hypoallergenic dog breed which makes it an ideal choice for families or owners who may suffer from dander sensitivities.
Are you interested in adopting a Bichon Frise?
If so, let’s take a close look at this specific breed below, its grooming needs and how you can further reduce pet allergens in your home.
What Makes a Dog Hypoallergenic?
Being labeled as hypoallergenic is a bit confusing when it comes to dogs. There is no animal, including dogs that is completely allergen-free. However, some breeds are called hypoallergenic due to a few important factors.
- Dogs that either doesn’t shed or have a low-shed coat are considered hypoallergenic.
- Dogs that are hairless are also among those that carry the label.
- Dogs that produce little to no dander are hypoallergenic. The dander is what triggers an allergic reaction in humans.
Is a Bichon Frise Hypoallergenic?
The Bichon Frise breed is considered hypoallergenic.
The protein that causes pet allergies is found in the urine, dander, and saliva of dogs.
The Bichon has a very low shed range and they generally do not drool. When properly trained, they will always urinate outdoors in approved areas which will also help prevent exposure to allergy-inducing proteins.
Many owners have been known to keep their Bichons short shaved to further reduce the already minimal amount of shedding that occurs.
Do Bichon Frises Have Hair or Fur?
Bichon Frises dogs do have fur. It is generally short and has a slightly curly or fluffy appearance.
They are a low shedding breed which makes them a good choice for homes where pet allergies are a concern. Their corkscrew coat is almost always white in color and is one of their most striking and noticeable features.
The Bichon features a double-layered coat which helps prevent high volumes of dander production. Their double-layered coat also puts them among the low-shed, non-shedding breeds. It is important that you groom your Bichon and brush them on a regular basis to keep their coat healthy and clean.
For those who suffer from pet allergies, taking your dog to a professional groomer may be a good alternative to home grooming.
Does the Bichon Frise Shed?
The Bichons are considered hypoallergenic, but they do experience some shedding. Unlike non-hypoallergenic dogs, Bichon Frise dogs have a very low level of shedding thanks to their double-layered coat.
The undercoat will molt, however, the corkscrew curls of the breed catches the molting and traps it on the dog itself.
As a breed, this makes it easier for people with pet allergies to live and care for their dogs. For proper maintenance, regular brushing and bathing can help remove excess molting and keep your home dander free.
The most shedding or molting will occur during shedding seasons which is usually just before the start of summer and winter.
Do Bichon Frise Have Odor?
Most dogs have a scent that is specific to their breed while others will just have a general canine odor.
Bichon Frise dogs however are one of the few odorless dogs that exist. Thanks to their minimal shedding, lack of drool, and general breed advantages, they don’t generate a scent. It is worth noting that if your dog gets dirty or wet, it will smell like whatever soiled their fur.
Also, Bichons that have an odor typically have an underlying health problem that should be addressed as soon as possible.
How To Groom a Bichon Frise
Grooming your Bichon is the best way to keep allergens to a minimum.
DIY Grooming vs Professional: Cost
You can groom your pet at home or can take them to a professional. Bichon Frise dogs have a double coat, they have minimal to no shedding, but need regular grooming. Professional grooming sessions will start around $30 and can go up to as much as $70 per session.
Dog Grooming to Prevent Matting
Considering that you need to brush a Bichon's hair daily to prevent matting, it may be worth doing so on your own if you are able.
Too much matting can cause rashes to develop as well as lead to even worse health problems. If you are planning to do this at home on your own, consider picking up an effective dog brush, like the GoPets Dematting Comb Rake (found on Amazon) will enable you to prevent matting before it starts.
How Often To Groom?
Bathing: Bathe your Bichon using a detangling shampoo formulated for hypoallergenic dogs (find it on Amazon). In the event that your pooch has matted fur, make a point of brushing out the mats before giving them a bath. Wetting their coat will further curl any existing matting in their hair.
It is important to brush them every day and wash them at least once per week to prevent matting and excess shedding. Once they are in the bath, wet their whole body and then lather their entire coat with the dog shampoo. Pay close attention to their paws, tear stains, and around their muzzle.
Brushing: Make sure to clean their ears and teeth, especially if you have a dog that suffers from allergies. Depending on the shampoo you choose, you may need to condition their coat to help keep their hair soft and skin protected. Towel drying your Bichon is the best course of action as it will keep their skin from getting dried out. Once their fur is dry to the point of being slightly damp, take a slicker brush, like the Safari Soft Slicker Brush (available on Chewy) and groom them using down strokes. This will rid their coat of excess fur and dander while also giving their coat a nice bouncy shine.
Trimming: Trimming your Bichon's hair is not as complicated as it sounds, but if you are not confident, a professional groomer is just a call away. For home clipping, start from the paws and work your way up. You can find specialized grooming clippers for dogs at just about any pet store. Make sure to avoid cutting too close or in between the paw pads. Allow yourself time to cut with care because grooming requires patience and dedication regardless of how well behaved your pet may be.
Caring for Bichon Frise With Hypoallergenic Conditions
As a pet owner who may have pet allergies, caring for a dog that suffers from allergies themselves can seem complex. Bichon Frise dogs happen to be more apt to develop allergies than other dogs. This is due to a variety of reasons referred to as atopy.
Bichons have very sensitive stomachs that often prevent them from consuming a wide assortment of foods. Often, they will develop an allergy similar to a human pet allergy. They have smaller nasal passages that can trigger an attack. They also may develop an allergy to their own dander from their own skin.
Understanding when your dog may have an allergy is the first step in learning the proper way to care for them. If you notice bald patches on their coat, raw skin that is irritated from scratches, or excessive coughing, chances are they have an allergy. Licking and chewing excessively are also signs of allergies as well as constant vomiting or loose motions.
Thankfully, there are ways to help reduce your Bichon's distress if they suffer from allergies.
A balanced diet is the best way to help manage their condition. You should avoid giving them human food aside from the occasional piece of fruit. Using specialized dog food free of additives and fillings such as Ollie Fresh Dog Food will help them maintain a balanced diet.
Their recipes are designed by veterinarians and offer a range of options such as their freshly made dog meals made in USDA kitchens that include a rich mix of healthy proteins (beef, chicken, turkey and lamb) and vegetables. They also have baked meals that are just as delicious but easier to store. Their new range includes a mixed meal plan than combines baked and fresh dog food perfectly formulated for optimal health.
Taking care of your Bichon's coat and extremities is essential, especially if they have allergies. Their ears should be cleaned on a weekly basis to prevent wax buildup and reduce irritation. Their double coat needs to be trimmed on a regular basis with daily brushing. Use a flea collar like Seresto and use a shampoo specifically formulated for allergy control.
Proper Home Maintenance
Keeping your home clean is the best way to manage your own allergies and reduce the effects of your pet’s allergies. Vacuum or mop on a daily basis to remove excess hair or dander.
Some pet vacuums are specially designed to pull up pet hair and trap dander. Brands like Shark, iRobot and Bissell for great for cleaning floors, steps, carpets, window blinds and large rugs.
Their beds should be washed in pet-safe detergent at least once a week.
Make a point of cleaning their food bowls with soap and water at least twice weekly to reduce the trigger of allergies due to dog saliva.