The Cavapoo is the offspring of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and the Toy or Miniature Poodle. Gentle, loyal, playful, and highly intelligent, Cavapoos are the perfect family pet. But you still need to be sure that you and the pup are good fits for each other before making any decisions.
One of the most pressing questions prospective Cavapoo parents ask themselves before bringing their new furry friend home is: do Cavapoos shed? Shedding can be a deal-breaker, especially if you or your family members have allergic sensitivities.
This article will answer any questions you might have regarding Cavapoos’ shedding, including whether they do shed, what to do about it, and whether these pups are considered hypoallergenic. So, let’s get into it.
Do Cavapoos shed? Yes, they do. All canines do, to some extent. But compared to some other popular breeds, the Cavapoo’s shedding is minimal. Being a cross between the little to non-shedding Poodle and the moderately shedding Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, you should expect low to moderate shedding from your new Cavapoo puppy. The level of shedding will mostly depend on coat and fur type, which can be inherited from either parent.
Due to their adorable look and calm and loving nature, Cavapoos make excellent family dogs. But when it comes to bringing a new dog home, shedding is always a concern. Questions about how much a particular dog sheds become more complicated when dealing with mixed breeds, such as the Cavapoo. That’s because you never know what traits they will inherit from either side of the family.
In any case, you should expect shedding from your Cavapoo. But that shouldn’t keep you from bringing one of these little cuties into your home. If the shedding is a little more than you expected, don’t worry. There are ways to effectively manage and reduce the amount of hair your new Cavapoo drops. Read on to learn more.
How Much Do Cavapoos Shed?
Contrary to popular belief, no dog is entirely non-shedding. You should expect some low to moderate shedding from your Cavapoo, no matter what you might have heard. But keep in mind that not all Cavapoos shed the same. Due to genetics, coat type, and generation, the amount of shedding will vary from one Cavapoo to the next.
For instance, a Cavapoo with more Poodle qualities will likely shed less than one with the Cavalier as the dominant gene. The offspring of an F1 Cavapoo (50% Cavalier and 50% Poodle) and a purebred Poodle, which breeders call the F1B generation, exhibit the least shedding. This is because F1B generation Cavapoos are 75% Poodle and only 25% Cavalier.
Why Do Cavapoos Shed?
Shedding is a natural part of the fur growth cycle, and as I mentioned earlier in the article, all dogs go through it to varying degrees. Because of their Poodle genes, Cavapoos are somewhat less prone to shedding. However, your Cavapoo will still drop fur.
And now that we know they do shed, let’s explore why. Like human hair, dog fur goes through continuous growth cycles. In the last phase of the fur growth cycle (Exogen phase), the hair follicle shrinks, cutting blood supply to the shaft (visible part of fur above the skin).
Without blood, these old fur strands eventually fall out, and new ones replace them. The hair growth cycle is relatively slow in low-shedding dogs such as Cavapoos and Poodles. Additionally, changing seasons can influence your pup’s fur growth and shedding cycles due to changes in hours of light and temperature.
Shedding Seasons and Frequency
When do Cavapoos shed? Typically, these dogs shed lightly throughout the year. But you may notice that your Cavapoo sheds more at a particular time of the year, don’t be alarmed. Like many other double-coated dogs, some Cavapoos shed seasonally and may blow their coats once or twice a year.
During this period, the shedding will be heavier and more noticeable. Seasonal shedding is influenced by hormonal changes triggered by changes in temperature and hours of daylight. Your Cavapoo may shed his winter coat to make room for a lighter summer one. The shedding occurs because the days are longer, and there are more hours of light.
As the days get shorter, the cycle reverses, and your pup begins to shed the summer fur for a thicker winter undercoat, which usually happens in fall. Usually, seasonal shedding is normal in healthy, double-coated dogs, so don’t panic when you notice your Cavapoo shedding more than usual during the transition from colder to warmer weather and vice versa.
Again, the shedding will vary from one Cavapoo to the next. And before I wrap up this section, I want to reiterate that although all Cavapoos shed, not all blow coat.
Since shedding patterns can vary from one Cavapoo pup to another, it does not necessarily cause concern if your pup is losing more fur than your neighbor’s Cavapoo.
However, there are times when excessive shedding is a sign of something wrong, especially if the shedding is accompanied by other physical symptoms such as bald patches, inflamed skin, brittle fur, and lack of energy. Below are some common culprits of unhealthy shedding in Cavapoos.
- Stress and anxiety. Because Cavapoos are very loving and loyal, they get stressed and anxious when they are left alone for long, which may increase shedding.
- Poor diet. Low-quality foods lacking in nutrients such as protein and Omega 3 fatty acids may also contribute to shedding.
- Fleas, mites, ticks, and other parasitic infestations lead to itchiness, causing your pup to scratch more. Excessive scratching leads to fur loss.
- Your Cavapoo may be allergic to certain foods and environmental allergens such as mold, pollen, and certain plants. Coming into contact with these allergens may irritate their skin, causing hair loss.
- Underlying conditions. Ailments such as thyroid disease, inflammatory bowel disease, adrenal issues, and cancer can lead to skin issues and fur loss.
Book an appointment with your veterinary office if you notice significant changes in your Cavapoo’s shedding patterns. Your vet will perform tests and offer treatments and remedies to curb your Cavapoo’s unhealthy shedding.
Depending on the diagnosis, the vet may recommend diet changes, allergy medications, topical treatments, or provide stress reduction tips.
What Type of Coat Does the Cavapoo Have?
In addition to genes and generation, another critical factor to consider in Cavapoo shedding is coat type. Their coats can be flat (straight) or curly. The former is inherited from the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, which is more prone to shedding.
The latter comes from the Poodle parent, and as you know, Poodles are generally non-shedding. Pick one with the curly fur type if you want the least shedding Cavapoo pup. However, you will not be able to tell the type of fur a Cavapoo puppy will have until they are about six to nine months old.
Cavapoos are double coated, meaning that they have two layers of fur. They spot a short, thick undercoat and a layer of longer, harsh ‘guard hairs’ on top of it. The undercoat helps them stay warm in the winter and cool in the summer, while the topcoat is more of a protective layer.
In terms of colors, Cavapoo coats come in white, gold, cream, chocolate, fawn, and chestnut. These pups can also be white and chestnut or even tricolored.
How to Manage and Reduce Cavapoo Shedding
As I’ve stated throughout the article, more shedding from your Cavapoo pup is not necessarily a cause for concern. However, dealing with excessive shedding all at once can be a little overwhelming. Lucky for you, I have a few useful tips to help you manage and reduce your Cavapoo shedding.
The best way to keep this breed’s shedding to a minimum is by grooming them regularly. Brushing, for instance, is a very effective grooming technique. Regular brushing removes loose hairs to limit shedding and prevents your pup’s fur from matting. The longer your puppy goes without brushing, the more painful the brushing will be for them.
For this reason, I recommend brushing your Cavapoo at least every two days or perhaps even daily if you can afford the time. It would help if you also take your pup to a professional groomer for more thorough brushing and grooming once in a while.
Diet plays a critical role in the health of your canine’s skin and fur. As we saw earlier in the article, a poor diet lacking certain nutrients can contribute to unhealthy shedding. If you want your Cavapoo’s fur to be shiny and elegant, ensure that their diet contains sufficient protein and healthy fats, including Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids.
Protein deficiency weakens hair follicles, which impedes fur growth and exacerbates shedding. Ensure that your Cavapoo’s food contains 20-25% protein to avoid protein deficiency.
Bathing your dog is a great habit to ensure proper hygiene. Like brushing, washing also helps remove loose, falling hairs before being deposited all over. Don’t bathe your pup too often as it can dry out their skin and cause irritation and more shedding.
A professional groomer or even a vet can help you create a detailed plan for brushing and bathing your Cavapoo puppy. To further improve coat health, consider increasing your pup’s intake of Omega 3 fatty acids, zinc, chrome, and B vitamins via supplementation.
Is Cavapoos Hypoallergenic?
The short answer is no. And according to the American Kennel Club (AKC), no dog truly is. That’s because shedding is responsible for releasing allergens into the air. The irritants that trigger allergic reactions in allergy sufferers can be found in the canine’s saliva and urine.
They are mainly transferred to the skin and fur when dogs lick themselves and are released into the air as dander (tiny particles of dead skin cells). Coming into contact with these irritants may trigger allergic reactions in people with allergic sensitivities. Since all dogs shed to some degree, no dog can be considered 100% hypoallergenic.
That being said, it’s important to note that the Cavapoo doesn’t shed much, meaning that you’ll have much less fur to deal with compared to other breeds. Less shedding also means less fur and dander in your home.
The point is that while the Cavapoo may not be a hypoallergenic breed per se, it’s more allergy-friendly than most breeds. That’s why most allergy sufferers love this breed.
You can further reduce allergens through regular grooming, providing a proper diet, regularly vacuuming your home, and installing a HEPA air filter.