No, a Rottweiler is not a hypoallergenic dog. No dog is truly hypoallergenic, although some dogs may be a better choice for those with allergies than others. A Rottweiler may sadly aggravate those with severe dog allergies.
Are You Allergic to Dogs?
If you’ve ever suffered from hay fever or animal allergies, then you’ll know how frustrating it can be. A blocked nose, scratchy throat, and watery eyes are all signs that you have an allergy to something.
For those whose symptoms are triggered by dogs, it can be heart-breaking. Owning a dog is one of life’s great joys. Some dogs are better for those with allergies than others, and these are the dogs that are sold as being hypoallergenic.
Popular hypoallergenic dogs include:
- Afghan Hound
- American Hairless Terrier
- Bedlington Terrier
- Portuguese Water Dog
If you’re interested in an exhaustive list of all dogs considered to be hypoallergenic, the American Kennel Club has what you need.
It’s important to reiterate that no dog is ever truly hypoallergenic. The phrase is used to describe dogs who are less likely to trigger allergy symptoms in a person.
What Makes a Dog ‘Hypoallergenic’?
People with allergies find that their symptoms are usually triggered by dogs because of one (or all) of the following:
Dog hair is an obvious cause of allergies. Some hair is very thick, and others are very fine, but those dogs who shed can leave their hair all over the place. But you may be surprised to hear that it’s not the strands of hair themselves that are causing the issue.
It’s the proteins within the hair and in the dander of the dog that cause a person to react. Dander is essentially made up of microscopic skin cells and flakes of skin.
It’s like dandruff (hence the word connection), and all animals with hair or fur, including humans, produce it. Dogs produce a lot of dander, and this is what you’re most likely to be allergic to.
Dogs who are sold as being hypoallergenic are those who produce very low amounts of dander. Often these are dogs who have little or no hair, as the hairier a dog is, the more dander they produce.
However, some people are allergic to a dog’s saliva, and as you’ll never find a dog that doesn’t produce saliva, then no dog can ever be considered truly hypoallergenic.
Why Can’t a Rottweiler be Hypoallergenic?
You might think that because a Rottweiler has very short hair, then there’s a chance they could be good for those with allergies or considered hypoallergenic.
But you may be surprised to know that despite having short hair, a Rottweiler has an incredibly thick coat, made up of lots of hair.
Rottweilers have a double coat, which is essentially two layers of fur. One layer is usually thinner, the other much thicker. It’s what keeps your pet warm.
A Rottweiler usually sheds twice a year, a process that is also known as ‘blowing out.’ They shed in the spring as their get rid of their thick winter coat, and then they shed again in the fall as they drop any dead hair to make way for the warm coat once again.
Double coats with plenty of hair mean plenty of dander, too, so if you’re highly sensitive to pet dander there’s a good chance the Rottweiler won’t be the dog for you.
However, all is not lost! There are ways to help reduce the issues that aggravate your allergies.
When You Really Want a Rottweiler!
We can’t blame you for being disappointed to hear that a Rottweiler might not be a possible choice for you. It can be especially gutting when you really had your heart set on one. However, it might not be a lost cause.
There are ways for you to combat the dander, which is most likely the cause of your allergies. And you’ll be pleased to hear that a Rottweiler does shed less than other dogs, and their hair is shorter, so they harvest less dander. This means that if your dog allergies are mild, then a Rottweiler could absolutely be a good choice for you.
Now, if you’re highly sensitive to a dog’s saliva, then this won’t apply, and it’s always best to ask your doctor before deciding to take on a dog when you’re known to be allergic.
But some do have dog allergies who have gone on to love and own many dogs, including the majestic Rottweiler.
Much of it involves some hard work on your part, but the rewards are great when you have your faithful, chunky Rottweiler by your side.
Stay on Top of Hair and Dander
It’s simple science, really: if dander is making you sneeze, try to rid the house of as much of it as possible. Vacuum regularly, maybe even a couple of times a day during Rottie blowout seasons.
If possible, switch out your carpets for hardwood floors, which are much easier to clean, and don’t harvest the dander. Sweep regularly, and vacuum too, and you’ll be staying on top of the allergens.
Encourage your Rottweiler to stay away from certain areas of the house, especially the areas you spend a lot of time. Train them not to jump on the furniture and keep your bedroom doors shut so that they never go on your bed.
Keep your Rottweiler away from your clean laundry, too, so that they don’t encounter your clothes and leave their dander on such items as underwear or towels.
Brushing, Brushing, and More Brushing!
Dander collects in your dog’s fur and hair and the longer you leave it, the more will accumulate. The only way to tackle this is to brush regularly, especially in shedding season.
Get a good quality brush, one with find teeth to remove dead hair and dander, such as this one from Amazon, which comes highly recommended.
Be sure to do all the brushing outside! Otherwise, you’ll simply make the problem worse as the microscopic hairs and dander fly all over your house so that you’re back to square one.
You can vacuum your Rottweiler, too. If they’re not afraid or antagonized by the vacuum cleaner, it’s a great way to quickly run over their fur and remove excess dander. A lot of Rottie’s also love it being done to them.
Bathing your Rottweiler is also of huge importance, and once again cuts down on dander and shed hair. If you’re not too keen on all that hair in your bathroom, though, then book them in for regular appointments at their groomer’s.
In the good weather, allow your Rottweiler to be outside as much as possible. As long as they seem happy, are still getting good exercise, and are getting lots of love and attention, it’s another way to stop the shedding in your house.
Consider a Hybrid Breed
If after all this effort your allergies still wouldn’t cease, then consider a hybrid dog, a Rottweiler crossed with another dog considered hypoallergenic.
A Rottie-Poo, or a Rottweiler crossed with a Poodle, for example, could be a way to get all of your favorite Rottweiler goodness in the form of a dog who won’t aggravate your allergies.
Not Hypoallergenic, by Hyper-Adorable!
By taking the time to look after your Rottweiler’s coat and your house, you might find that even with dog allergies, your non-hypoallergenic Rottweiler can still be a welcome and loved member of the family.