There is no question that the coat of the Bichon Frise is dense, fluffy, and undeniably adorable, but how much does it shed? You will be happy to learn that the Bichon Frise doesn’t shed hardly at all throughout most of it’s life.
Do Bichons Shed a Lot? Bichon Frise’s shed very little throughout most of their life. In fact, this is one of the lowest-shed breeds, alongside poodles, thanks to the dense, curly coat. There is a period when the coat is changing between the time a Bichon Frise is 9 months and about a year during which the coat may shed quite a lot and needs to be brushed daily.
If you want a low shed dog, the Bichon Frise Is a superb choice, but you must be prepared for some significant coat maintenance. Here’s what you need to know about how much Bichon Frise’s shed throughout their lives and what you should do to maintain the coat.
Bichons and Shedding
Bichons shed very little, especially when compared to other breeds. Throughout most of their lives, they shed less than practically any other breed. They are one of the most hypoallergenic choices available.
How Much do Bichon Frises Shed?
Bichon Frises shed hardly at all for most of their life. Bichon Frise puppies have a silky coat that tends to shed very little and adult Bichons have a dense, cottony coat that is even less prone to shedding.
There is a period of time from 9 months to a year during which they may shed quite a lot. During this time your Bichon Frise gets rid of their puppy coat and replaces it with an adult coat.
However, with the exception of this period, your Bichon Frise will shed hardly at all.
Are Bichon Frises Hypoallergenic?
People are allergic to dander that is produced in a dog skin when they lick their coats. This dander is spread when the coat sheds. Therefore, the less a dog’s coat sheds, the less dander will be spread.
All dogs shed to some degree, even dogs with hair instead of fur like the Bichon Frise. However, dogs with hair shed much less. When a dog with curly, dense hair, (like the Bichon Frise), sheds any shed hair is caught within the dense coat, preventing it from falling and causing an allergic reaction. Therefore, dogs with dense, curly hair, such as Poodles and Bichon Frises, are even more hypoallergenic than other dogs with hair instead of fur.
Is it Difficult to Maintain the Coat of a Bichon Frise?
The Bichon Frise puppy coat Is soft, silky, and very easy to maintain. All it will take is brushing every few days to keep the coat free of tangles and occasional trimming as it gets long.
When the coat changes, when your Bichon is from 9 months to a year old, it will take considerably more maintenance. During this time, you’ll need to brush your dog every day and sometimes multiple times a day to keep the coat from becoming matted. Many people find it easier to clip the coat short during this period.
Once the puppy coat is gone, the Bichon Frise will have a coat that is moderately difficult to maintain. The dense double coat can be prone to matting, thanks to its cottony texture. It must be brushed regularly. It is generally best to blow dry when the dog is bathed to help prevent matting.
How to Keep Shedding as Low as Possible for Allergy Sufferers
If you are trying to maintain your Bichon Frise in a way that will reduce shedding as much as you can, you will want to strike a balance between coat maintenance and gaining enough hair to keep any shed hair from dropping. If the coat is kept too short, any shed hair will be more likely to drop and cause problems in your home.
If the coat is kept too long, it will be difficult to maintain it easily and avoid mats which can quickly be painful to your dog. Most people find that keeping the coat a few inches long is about right, but the coat length that works best for you will depend on your grooming tolerance and how little hair you want to drop.
Regular brushing is essential to keep mats from forming and to keep getting rid of spent hair. Brushing should always be done outside so that dander is shed somewhere it won’t contaminate the house. If you are extremely allergic to dogs, it may be best that somebody else in the household performs brushing.
To reduce allergens as much as possible, it is best to brush your dog every day. A slicker brush is ideal to work out any developing mats from the skin as well as thoroughly remove shed hair. It is often helpful to use a gentle, natural oil-based grooming spray, such as shea butter, to help you work out mats and keep them from forming between brushings.
As hard as it can be, it’s best that your Bichon Frise not be on the furniture unless there’s something between them and the fabric. Any dander that drops directly from your dog’s skin onto the couch is sure to intensify allergic reactions.
It is difficult to sufficiently clean upholstery. Therefore, it’s best to train your Bichon Frise to use a blanket or their own bed on your couch. Most Bichons enjoy snuggling up in a fluffy bed, so it will probably not be difficult to teach them to stay on their own part of the couch.
It may be even harder to keep your Bichon Frise out of your bedroom than it is to keep them off of most of the couch, but it is very important that you train your Bichon Frise to sleep in another room and stay out of your bedroom from an early age. It will be harder to train your Bichon Frise to stay out of your bedroom once they’ve already become accustomed to it, so it’s best to begin this training from the beginning.
It’s essential to keep your Bichon Frise out of the bedroom because you need time for your body to recover from allergens in between exposure periods. You can use this time to run your air purifier and let your system re-calibrate.
An essential component of life with any Bichon Frise is training them to accept grooming. Your dog will need to be groomed from the time they are a young puppy throughout their life, so it’s important to make sure that they enjoy this experience and do not find it traumatizing.
Acclimate your Bichon to grooming by making sessions short and pleasant and providing your dog with plenty of tasty treats whenever they are being groomed.
Do Some Bichon Frise Shed More Than Others?
Bichon Frises typically have a very dense, curly coat. This is the type of coat that is described by the breed standard. However, every dog is an individual, and not every Bichon Frise has as dense or curly a coat as every other dog.
Some individuals have silkier coats that may allow more shed hair to drop, giving the impression that these dogs shed more overall. For most people, the difference will be negligible, but for individuals who suffer from severe allergies, it may be noticeable.
You may not know exactly how curly your Bichon Frise will be until they are as old as 3 years. To increase your chance of having a curly haired Bichon Frise, choose a reputable breeder that is breeding dogs that have won at dog shows and have always been noted for a curly coat. However, even if you take these precautions, it is possible that your dog may not be as curly as expected.
Unfortunately, the curliness of the puppy isn’t a good predictor of the curliness of the adult. Puppies with very silky coats often grow into adults with very lush, cottony coats.
Purpose of the Bichon Frise coat
Many people are surprised to learn that the coat of the Bichon Frise is functional, not just adorably fluffy. The dense, plush undercoat provides insulation even in cold temperatures. The somewhat harsher layer of guard hairs protects the undercoat and the skin from weather.
As these little dogs became popular as luxury lap dogs and circus performers, the white coat helped them to stand out in the crowd and show themselves to be clean for the laps of royalty.
Today, the Bichon Frise’s coat acts as an extremely hypoallergenic coat that may allow some people who otherwise couldn’t have a dog to enjoy the company of the Bichon Frise.
The Bichon is a Wonderfully Low-Shed Breed
If you are looking for a dog that is a good choice for allergy sufferers or those who want to maintain a clean home, the Bichon Frise is a great choice. These adorably fluffy dogs shed very little throughout most of their life. While they may require some grooming, they reward you with a lush, low-shed coat.