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Do Bernedoodles Shed? Are These Dogs Hypoallergenic At All?

Do Bernedoodles Shed? Are These Dogs Hypoallergenic At All?

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When it comes to getting a new puppy, there are multiple things to consider. From something less important like what name will you give it, to something more serious like how much time you can spend on its training.

Somewhere in the latter category comes the question of shedding. Shedding in some dogs can be a big problem for owners. No matter if you live in a house with a big backyard or in a flat, shedding is a thing to consider when deciding what dog breed you want to get.

So, what about Bernedoodles? Can these dogs be the perfect choice for people who want nothing to do with loose hair flying around their homes?

To answer this question, first, you have to know a little bit more about this mixed dog breed and its coat.

What we can tell you for sure from the start is that a Bernedoodle will certainly shed a lot less hair than the Bernese Mountain Dog it’s related to.

Most people want a Bernedoodle because they think that they are completely non-shedding dogs, but that is rarely the case. Some people believe that they are hypoallergenic, but, as it turns out, this also may not be the case with each and every representative of this breed.

But, enough with the questions and vague answers. Let’s dive into this article, which will cover all you need to know about Bernedoodle shedding and how it may affect your lifestyle.

What is a Bernedoodle?

bernedoodle dog lying on grass

Bernedoodles are an awesome mix of a Poodle and a Bernese Mountain Dog. They have quickly grown in popularity for their lovable characteristics, even though they haven’t been around for a long time.

They are cherished for their sweet personalities, energy, friendliness, and most of all, their beautiful and quite unique coats.

Before we start tackling the main issue at hand, you should know that there are different types of Bernedoodles and all of them can have different traits and characteristics.

Breeding two purebred dogs can have unpredictable results in some generations, and more predictable results in others.

For now, just remember that there are multiple generations of these pups, and this can be the main factor in determining how much your Bernedoodle will shed.

In addition, the size can also vary. A Bernese Mountain Dog can be bred with a toy, a mini, or a standard Poodle and each one will be a different size.

Do Bernedoodles shed?

adorable bernedoodle resting on grass

Bernedoodles are generally known for being a low- to a non-shedding breed. This means that they definitely don’t shed in the traditional sense, but they will shed hair as you brush them out.

However, as we stated above, the amount of hair they shed is closely related to their genetic makeup. Their genetic makeup is determined by how many genes they inherit from each parent.

Their genes dictate what type of coat they will have. For instance, if their genetic mix leans more on their Poodle parent, then their coat will be more curly and shed less. On the other hand, if they inherit more genes from the Bernese Mountain Dog side of the mix, you can expect a little more shedding, but not more than a regular Bernese Mountain Dog will shed.

That being said, most Bernedoodles shed a small amount of hair compared to many other dog breeds, which makes them good companions for people suffering from dog-related allergies.

Do F1 Bernedoodles shed?

This is the first generation of Bernedoodles, meaning that they are a cross between a Poodle and a Bernese Mountain dog.

They have 50% Poodle and 50% Bernese Mountain Dog in their genetic makeup. While Poodles are typically low- to non-shedding dogs, most Bernese Mountain Dogs do shed.

The determining factor in whether an F1 Bernedoodle will shed is the number of coat traits it inherits from the Poodle side of the mix.

So, it is possible to have F1 Bernedoodles that don’t shed at all, but it is also pretty common for them to shed frequently in great volume.

The type of their coat also has an influence on the amount of hair they shed. Curly, Poodle-like coats will have the greatest chance of no shedding.

Do F1B Bernedoodles shed?

bernedoodle dog lying on the floor

The “B” in their name stands for backcross, and it means that these pups are the result of crossing a Bernedoodle with a Poodle. Their offspring is a dog that is 75% Poodle and 25% Bernese Mountain Dog.

As you might deduce, these dogs are more likely to inherit the genetics of the Poodle side of their parent breeds. This, in turn, means that they are less likely to shed and more likely to have hypoallergenic qualities.

Do Mini Bernedoodles shed?

This type of Bernedoodle can be created in a few different ways. For instance, a mix of a Bernese Mountain Dog and a Miniature Poodle will produce a Mini Bernedoodle. Likewise, mixing a Bernese with a Toy Poodle will give an offspring fittingly named Tiny Bernedoodle.

However, they are still considered to be the first generation of the mix, and they give pretty much the same results as the F1 generation mentioned above. They can be shedding or non-shedding, and they can have different types of coats.

It is worth mentioning that these Bernedoodles are the most likely to have the adorable Teddy Bear look. But, it depends on their size and coat type. The more curly their coat is, the more of a chance that they will turn out to be living, breathing “teddy bears”.

A Bernedoodle’s coat

adorable Bernedoodle Puppy lying at home

Bernedoodle coats can vary in consistency, thickness, and color. Since they come from both the Poodle and the Bernese Mountain Dog, the F1 (first generation) Bernedoodles are like rolling a dice.

Sometimes, you might get a pup that has a coat similar to a Poodle, and another that inherits the coat of a Bernese Mountain Dog in the same litter.

As breeders begin to breed this first generation of Bernedoodles with other Bernedoodles or Poodles, they are able to achieve more consistency and more predictable traits (color, size, shed level).

The coats found on Bernedoodles can have a diverse range of colors. Some might turn out black and white while others may be black and brown or pure black.

The most popular and sought-after color combination of Bernedoodles is the tricolor coat, which has the white, black, and brown colors usually found on a Bernese Mountain Dog. Some pups might even have one or two other colors thrown in the mix in some spots on their coat.

In general, when you look to buy a Bernedoodle, the type of coat should take precedence over the coat color.

A coat with thicker hair will help your pup survive cold winters better while providing protection from the sun during the hot summer days. As an aspiring Bernedoodle owner, this is something you should also consider when choosing a puppy.

These cross-breed doggies usually come in one of three coat types: curly, wavy, or straight.

• Straight “hair coat”

Bernedoodles with this type of coat usually shed the most and are the least hypoallergenic of the three common coat types. Although it is called flat or straight, this type of coat may actually have a slight wave to it. The length of the pup’s hair mostly depends on the length of its parent’s hair. Bernedoodles with a straight coat are not very common, and you will most likely find them with wavy or curly coats.

• Wavy “fleece” coat

This type of coat is low- to non-shedding and is probably the coat most often seen on Bernedoodles. A wavy coat is quite free-flowing, and usually has a kinked or wavy appearance.

• Curly “wool” coat

Bernedoodles with a curly coat will shed the least and are the most hypoallergenic of all three types. The curls of a “wool” coat are usually very tight with a soft texture, and closely resemble the ones found on a Poodle.

Pooches with this type of coat may still shed, but the loose hair gets tangled up in the curls rather than falling on the floor. This is good news, right? Well, like with everything in life, there is a good side and a little less good side, so to speak.

On one hand, you don’t have to worry about balls of fur rolling around your house, but on the other hand, it is necessary to brush your Bernedoodle daily and trim its coat frequently.

The curly-coated Bernedoodles are usually the most suitable for people who have an allergic reaction to dog dander. Remember that if you don’t want to deal with shedding, then the curlier the coat, the less likely it is to shed.

Whatever type you end up with, it is important to understand that you will most likely get the benefits of a low shedding dog, but you will also have the responsibility of keeping its coat well maintained and tangle-free.

Regular brushing is a must, and it usually means that you will have to do it two to three times every week. Furthermore, they need to be taken to a professional groomer every six to eight weeks to keep their eyes, paws, and private areas maintained.

What about allergies? Are Bernedoodles hypoallergenic?

bernedoodle puppy laying on the grass

Poodle mixes like Bernedoodles are generally considered to be hypoallergenic. However, they are not non-allergenic as no dog is truly non-allergenic.

When it comes to these adorable pups, they are considered allergy-friendly because of their single coat. All three coat types tend to be allergy-friendly, but the curly coat is regarded as being ideal for severe allergy sufferers.

Hypoallergenic and non-allergenic

cute little bernedoodle dog sitting on the floor

Photo from: @nessiethebernedoodle

The majority of people think that these two terms have the same meaning, but that is not the case. While hypoallergenic means there is less of a chance of it causing an allergic reaction, non-allergenic means that it will not cause an allergic reaction.

Now, you might be wondering that if Bernedoodles are hypoallergenic and are a great choice for allergy sufferers, then how come they are not non-allergenic?

Well, the reason is that, as we mentioned above, no dog breed is non-allergenic. This means that there is no dog that does not produce some kind of allergic response in people prone to dog-related allergies.

You might be thinking that a dog that doesn’t have much hair or doesn’t shed won’t cause an allergic response. But, most allergic reactions do not come from the dog’s coat as we have been taught to believe for many years.

The truth is that the protein found in a dog’s saliva is the real culprit for allergic reactions in humans. This protein makes its way into the dog’s dander, which attaches itself to the hair and the skin. So, the hair and the skin are just tools that help spread the allergens, which is contrary to what we thought for a long time.

However, the amount of these allergy-provoking proteins is different in every dog breed. The determining factor for how many of these proteins a certain breed carries is its seborrheic level. The seborrheic level is the level of oil a dog produces.

Some oily-haired dogs, such as Labrador Retrievers, carry a vast amount of these proteins. So, the less amount of oil a dog’s skin produces, the less dander it will have.

Since Poodles are one of the least oily dog breeds, Doodles and other mixed breeds created by using a Poodle parent are going to be more hypoallergenic and should have fewer body odors. Hence, Bernedoodles are more allergy-friendly than some other dog breeds around.

Do Bernedoodles lose or blow out their puppy coat?

 brown and white bernedoodle dog laying on the grass

Yes, they do. If you don’t know what that looks like, here is an explanation.

Most dog breeds have two coats: an undercoat and an overcoat. The undercoat is a softer coat and acts as insulation to regulate the dog’s body temperature. This means keeping the dog warm in the winter and cool in the summer.

The overcoat or the topcoat is more coarse and has stiff hairs that shield the dog’s skin from dirt or debris. Also, its purpose is to repel water and moisture from the dog’s skin.

When these two-coated dogs begin to shed, they are, in fact, shedding their undercoat. This is why dog owners are advised to brush their dogs regularly and get right down to the skin so the undercoat hair doesn’t get matted, tangled, or fall out everywhere in clusters.

Bernedoodles, on the other hand, do not have two coats. They possess only the undercoat, which is often referred to as simply a “hair coat”. They do begin losing some of this hair in their puppy years.

Bernedoodle puppies should be brushed regularly regardless of their coat type. But, keep in mind that curly coats will require brushing on a more frequent basis.

When your Bernedoodle pup gets to about nine months of age, it will start losing its coat little by little. This is the time when you need to brush it daily to get all the dead hair out of its fur before it has a chance to matt or tangle.

If you allow this to happen, expect to have quite a mess on your hands. Usually around this age, between nine months and one year, Bernedoodles lose their baby coats and grow into their permanent hair.

If all of this seems like quite a hassle, don’t worry. Some Bernedoodle owners who don’t want to deal with the everyday brushing opt to shave their dog regularly. So, if that’s your preference, go for it. It is all a matter of personal choice.

Why is my Bernedoodle shedding?

dog lying by the lake

Your Bernedoodle might be shedding because it inherited Bernese Mountain Dog genetics rather than the non-shedding genetics of a Poodle. As briefly mentioned above, a Bernedoodle’s shedding highly relies on the Bernedoodle generation you have.

Generally speaking, if your Bernedoodle is shedding, it is likely that you have an F1, F2, or F3 Bernedoodle generation, which is a fifty-fifty split between a Bernese Mountain Dog and a Poodle.

These generations of Bernedoodles are more likely to shed hair because they inherit 50% of the Bernese Mountain Dog traits. This basically means that it is like a coin flip or a fifty percent chance of whether or not a dog will shed.

Even if you acquire an F1B Bernedoodle that has 75% Poodle in its genes, in some cases, the shedding gene might still prevail. Besides that, there are also different genetic anomalies that can result in the excessive shedding of a Bernedoodle.

Can you stop a Bernedoodle from shedding?

bernedoodle puppy sitting on the grass

Before you get all excited thinking that there is an ultimate solution to the shedding problem, take a deep breath and read on. We hate being the bearers of bad news, but there really is no way to stop a dog’s shedding completely.

That said, if your Bernedoodle is shedding its coat, don’t panic. Shedding is a normal process for every dog breed, and the level of shedding can increase and decrease throughout the year.

Luckily, there are certain steps you can take to reduce the amount of shedding on your dog.

• Regular grooming

Make sure you routinely brush your Bernedoodle at least every couple of days. Ideally, you should brush your pup every day, and it doesn’t take up a lot of time.

There are some pretty good Bernedoodle brushes designed specifically for their coats, but in general, you can get the job done with a slicker brush and a comb. Slicker brushes have lots of thick steel pins that do a wonderful job of removing excess hair from a dog’s fur.

These tools are usually low-cost, and you will be using them very frequently. Even if your Bernedoodle doesn’t shed, you still need to brush its coat regularly to avoid matting and tangling.

• Maintain appropriate nutrition

Oftentimes, nutrition can be the main cause of excessive shedding in Bernedoodles and other dog breeds. Your pup’s coat is a reflection of the nutrients they are given every day.

The general opinion of veterinarians is that Omega 3 fatty acids are necessary for a healthy coat, which will lead to less shedding. Try to find dog foods that are rich in Omega 3 fatty acids and other nutrients your dog needs daily.

Human foods such as tuna, scallops, or even fish sticks can help your pup battle Omega 3 fatty acid deficiencies.

• Bathe your Bernedoodle on a regular basis

This can be an excellent method of reducing the amount of hair your pup sheds. Regular showering or bathing with deshedding shampoos will ensure that excess hair ends up in your bathtub rather than on your carpet.

In the warmer months, when Bernedoodles and other dogs tend to shed more often, you can consider giving it a bath twice a month. However, don’t shower your dog too often because that can lead to more harm than good.

Dog’s bodies produce natural oils that help keep their coats in healthy condition. If you bathe your dog too often, you risk disrupting the production of these oils, which can lead to itchy and dry skin.

• Reduce the stress levels of your Bernedoodle

Dogs can get stressed just like humans can, and increased stress can be a powerful emotional as well as physical strain on your pet’s body.

Insufficient exercise, a change of environment, or the death of a close friend can cause your pup’s stress levels to skyrocket, leaving you to battle with an increased amount of shedding.

If you and your Bernedoodle have just moved to a new house, it might have a stressful time trying to adjust to its new home. These doodles can be extremely sensitive to any change in the environment.

If you notice that your dog is experiencing stress, the best thing you can do is provide a daily routine for it to eat, walk, and rest. This ensures that your Bernedoodle can anticipate what will happen next; thus, decreasing its stress levels.

What else causes excessive shedding in Bernedoodles?

Frequent shedding, bald areas, or extreme hair loss are all indicators of excessive shedding. When you notice any of these symptoms, it is important to get in touch with a vet since there are numerous medical conditions that could be hiding underneath.

Some of the health problems that might lead to excessive shedding are the following:

• Infections (fungal or bacterial)

• Fleas, mites, or lice

Allergic reactions

• Current medications

• Crushing’s condition or other thyroid, kidney, or liver problems

• Cancer

Non-shedding Bernedoodle generations

Bernedoodle puppy sitting in the grass

There are numerous generations of this dog breed that can shed less hair. For instance, we mentioned that F1B Bernedoodles have a higher chance of being low- to non-shedding dogs.

The more Poodle a dog has in its genetic makeup, the less likely it is to shed. By this rule, the F1BB Bernedoodle, which is 87.5% Poodle and only 12.5% Bernese Mountain Dog, has even more of a chance of being a non-shedding and hypoallergenic dog.

There is also the F2B Bernedoodle (62.5% Poodle and 37.5% Bernese Mountain Dog, as well as the F2BB Bernedoodle (81.25% Poodle and 18.75% Bernese) that are also likely to shed less or not shed at all.

But, at the end of the day, it really boils down to luck. Even though there is more of a chance of non-shedding in these generations, there are no guarantees.

Bernedoodle health and lifespan

Bernedoodle Puppy lying on the ground (1)

Because it is a relatively young breed, there is limited information about the longevity and health concerns of Bernedoodles.

But, Bernedoodles tend to be healthier than both of their parent breeds. While inbreeding has left many purebred dogs vulnerable to genetically inherited diseases and conditions, cross-breeding reduces that risk.

However, since they inherit traits from their parents, there are some conditions that Bernedoodles may be predisposed to, such as:

• hip dysplasia

• elbow dysplasia

• eye problems

• skin issues

• allergies and hot spots

The instance of cancer in Bernedoodles seems to be lower than those found in Bernese Mountain Dogs.

Caring for your Bernedoodle

Bernedoodle puppy playing with her chew toy

Miniature and Tiny Bernedoodles are more suited for apartment and condo life while Standard Bernedoodles thrive when they have a yard to run around in.

Typically, this breed doesn’t require much personal space. As long as their moderate needs for mental and physical stimulation are met, they shouldn’t exhibit destructive behavior.

Like their Poodle parents, these pups are highly intelligent, which means they can learn good habits just as easily as bad ones. It is important to stick to regular training and socialization from an early age.

Exposing your pup to other dogs and humans while they are young is recommended because it will help them become well-mannered dogs when they grow up.

Just keep in mind that these dogs are very social and thrive on plenty of human affection and interaction. If you have limited time for a dog, then you might want to skip out on owning a Bernedoodle.

Let’s review what you need to know about Bernedoodles

Bernedoodle Puppy lying on the ground

If you are still in a dilemma of whether or not to own one of these pups, you should consider the following.

Bernedoodles can be great family dogs and an excellent choice for people with severe allergies, These designer dogs can cost quite a hefty amount, but some of the Bernedoodle generations shed very little or don’t shed at all, so keeping your house clean should not be a problem.

However, this, in turn, requires a bit of effort on your side by providing a regular grooming routine for your pup.

You should also think about the size of the Bernedoodle you want to get. If you live in an apartment, the tiny or mini Bernedoodle may be the better choice for you. On the other hand, if you live in a house with a back yard, then the standard Bernedoodle will fit pretty well.

Don’t forget that these dogs need to spend a lot of time with their humans in order to remain healthy and happy. If you think you cannot provide them with the attention they need, consider getting another dog breed instead.

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