Short answer: no. No dogs are absolutely, 100% hypoallergenic. However, cavapoo (cavoodles) are bread from poodle, which is one of the most hypoallergenic breeds of dogs out there. While nothing is guaranteed, a Cavapoo may cause far fewer or even no allergy symptoms in allergy sufferers.
Allergies are a widespread condition in the 21 century, and pet allergies are definitely something that thousands of people all over the world can relate to. Almost as much as 11 percent of all humans are allergic to their pets! That is no small number. For a lot of people, even a strong allergy isn’t a hindrance if they really want to have a pet. But it is always good to be well-informed about your allergy, whether getting a pet is a good idea for you or not and how to mitigate your allergy symptoms if you have them.
When it comes to pet allergy, there isn’t actually just one type of allergy. You can be allergic to many things about your pet (like their habit of waking you up at 5 am asking for food! 🙂 . Allergies to pet hair, pet dander, pet urine and other substances are just to name a few. Before getting any pet, it is very important to know if you have an allergy to them and if so, how you are going to manage it. Having said that, what about cavapoo? Are cavapoo hypoallergenic?
Cavapoo (cavoodles) are often touted as hypoallergenic breed of dogs. Many websites (even breeder websites) promise no allergy symptoms whatsoever if you get their cavapoo puppy. But is that really so? Here is what we will talk about in this article:
To be honest, the question should be: Are cavapoo hypoallergenic for you? The answer to this question will actually depend on what exactly you are allergic to. You aren’t just allergic to a dog. You can be allergic to a dog’s hair, saliva, dander, urine, faecal matter (gross, I know). If you are allergic to saliva, dander or urine, you will likely be allergic to any type of dog, including hypoallergenic ones like poodles and cavapoos.
If you are allergic to dog hair, cavapoo might be hypoallergenic enough for you to not experience any symptoms. F1 cavapoo are bred from poodle and King Cavalier spaniel, and often inherit the curly, smooth poodle hair. This dog will not shed much and be close to hypoallergenic just like a poodle would be. F1B cavapoo (when a cavapoo is bred to a Poodle) are even more hypoallergenic for people allergic to dog hair.
The same may be true to various degrees if you are allergic to dog dander. A lot of people allergic to dander can tolerate poodles without much trouble. If your cavapoo has inherited a lot of poodle genes, you might be able to tolerate them just fine as well.
Saliva of a cavapoo, just like poodle saliva, may also contain less allergenic proteins than other breeds of dogs. A lot of allergy sufferers notice that they don’t display as many (if any) symptoms when they are around cavapoo, even around a whole litter! 🙂 If you have always been sneezing and coughing around dogs, you may find that that is not the case at all with the cavapoos.
However, you may still experience symptoms to some degree, depending on the severity of your allergy. Remember, no dog breed is truly hypoallergenic (even though it’s a great marketing ploy used by so many breeders! In fact, you can weed out bad breeders by looking at their stance on allergy. If they promote their cavapoo as completely hypoallergenic, they are not a breeder you want to deal with. A good breeder will always warn you that no dog, including theirs, is really hypoallergenic.)
Even if you have a slight allergy to cavapoo, don’t despair. This doesn’t mean you can never have a pet, especially if you really want one. Dog allergies can be managed if they are not severe. If you have a severe allergy, you really need to think hard about owning a pet, as long term allergen exposure may end up harming your health (did you know that living with a pet that you are severely allergic to may cause asthma over the long term?). If your allergies are light, they can usually be successfully managed.
The other good thing is that a lot of slight allergy sufferers notice a significant improvement in their symptoms over the years of living with their cavapoo. Your body adapts and your immune system stops treating your pet proteins as foreign invaders! (how foreign can it be if your cavapoo sleeps under your blanket with you!) A lot of people notice their allergy completely disappears over time, even though they may still be allergic to other dogs!
Puppies produce fewer allergens than adult cavapoo. If you are trying to estimate how allergic you will be to a cavapoo, try to spend time around an adult dog, not just puppies. While you may not display any symptoms to puppies whatsoever, your reaction to an adult cavapoo will be a much stronger indicator!
Unless you are rescuing your cavapoo from cavapoo rescue, always adopt a cavapoo from a good breeder. We have an article on how to find a good cavapoo breeder here and lists of breeders here. A good breeder will always discuss your allergy issues with you and suggest the most hypoallergenic puppy they have (F1B cavapoo are often the most hypoallergenic type.)
A good breeder will let you visit their kennel to meet the puppies and their parents (or parent) and see whether your allergy flairs up or not. A good breeder will also likely be able to accept your puppy back after adoption if you display allergy symptoms that you can’t live with.
However, keep in mind that taking the puppy for a few weeks is not a good idea. For one, it will be very stressful for both you and the puppy if you have to return them. Also, you will likely not get refunded for a puppy even if you return it to a breeder. You need to really put a lot of thought into whether you are able to keep this little cavapoo or not if you suffer from allergy.
If you are only slightly allergic to your cavapoo, there are things you can do to make it easier in you.
Wash your hands!
Always wash your hands after you touch or pet your puppy. Don’t touch your face or mouth after touching your dog.
Keep your distance
Try not to sleep in the same room as your cavapoo (definitely, don’t take them in bed with you.)
Brush your cavapoo
Brush your cavapoo often outside to get rid of extra hair (cavapoo do shed minimally!) and the dander that collects on that hair.
Wash your cavapoo
Washing your cavapoo regularly will also help get rid of the extra dander on its skin and hair. If you get your cavapoo used to washing and bathing from early puppy-hood, they will most likely love this activity and be enthusiastic about the bath time!
Wash your cavapoo’s toys and bedding
Keeping your dog’s bedding and toys clean will help keeping extra dander and other allergens from spreading all over your house which will result in fewer allergens ending up in your airways and fewer allergy symptoms for you!
Keep your house clean
Ideally, you’d be doing it whether you own a cavapoo or not 🙂 Washing the floors of your house and vacuuming are two good ways of keeping extra allergens at bay. You can even get a HEPA vacuum to be able to more thoroughly clean the surfaces from hair and dander. Bonus point – you get a cleaner house!
While there are no truly hypoallergenic dog breeds, a few breeds are reported to cause fewer allergy symptoms to allergy sufferers than other breeds. Poodles are definitely famous for being hypoallergenic as well as minimally shedding dogs. Tibetan and Maltese terriers are two other breeds. Maltese terriers have smooth silky coats that shed minimally and also reportedly cause fewer allergies to people. Shih Tzu is another small breed that is considered hypoallergenic, as is Bichon Freeze. Labradoodles are a larger cross breed. It’s a mix of Labrador retriever and a poodle (standard or miniature). These dogs normally have longer, bushier hair but they often inherit poodle’s hypoallergenic genes.
Don’t lose hope of having a wonderful, loyal pet and companion because you might be allergic to them. If you have allergy to other types of dogs, definitely consider a cavapoo, and see if you can find a breeder who would let you visit their dogs and puppies. You may find that you don’t have any allergy at all to cavapoo dogs, or that your allergy symptoms are only minor. Cavapoos are a great pet and I really hope you can own one!