A little About Cavapoos and Shedding
You may also have heard of this breed being called a Cavoodle. They are an extremely popular breed and when looking at the little fluff balls, it is easy to understand why. They are absolutely delightful dogs!
The trait of being a loyal and devoted companion comes from the Poodle side of the family while the mischievous and affectionate side comes from the Spaniel.
The king Charles Spaniel is the other half of the parentage for the Cavapoo, the first being the Poodle.
Because of the family-oriented character these dogs make excellent pets for families with children of all ages.
Unfortunately, the breed is not recognised by the AKC although they have been officially approved by the IDCR (International Designer Canine Registry).
The average Cavapoo will stand anywhere between 9 – 11 inches in height which places them in the category of small dogs.
The male will grow slightly bigger than the female and weigh a little more. Your average Cavapoo will weigh in at about 18 pounds.
Because they are bred from Poodles, they are very intelligent dogs, with sharp minds. They need a certain amount of mental stimulation otherwise they can become destructive and bored.
The trait from the Spaniel side makes them very ‘people friendly’. They simply love being with their families. They detest being at home alone.
Do Cavapoos Shed?
Do Cavapoos Shed? Yes Cavapoos do shed. All dogs shed. The myth that some dogs don’t shed is simply that – a myth. Even hairless dogs shed skin cells Unlike some breeds where the hair simply stops growing, you will find that Poodle hair keeps on growing. This makes it prone to tangles and matting.
As puppies the Cavapoo will shed and as an adult he will carry on shedding.
The amount of hair which is shed depends on how much of the Spaniel and how much of the Poodles the pup has inherited.
A pup who has inherited more Spaniel genes will shed more, while the pup who had more Poodle genes will shed less.
If you decide to grow the coat a little longer you can expect more fur around your house. A shorter coat will mean less vacuuming for you.
In order to prevent tangles and matting the coat needs to be brushed every day. Cavapoos will love the personal attention they receive during a brushing session!
Short History of the Cavapoo
The first time we hear of the Cavapoo breed is back in the 1950’s. Breeders wanted to introduce a dog which was low-shedding so that people with allergies could still have a pet.
This is the reason why the Poodle came into the picture. Poodles are a very low-shedding dog.
The next time we hear about the breed is after WW11 when breeders in Australia also bred a hypoallergenic pooch.
They bred the Cavapoo which had parents of miniature Poodle and the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.
The Cavapoo inherited the traits of both parents although as with any crossbreed there is no guarantee that the individual puppy will inherit the true characteristics of either parent.
What is a Cavapoo Coat Like?
The Cavapoo dog is a company little pooch with a high-set tail which can be curled or straight.
They have long floppy ears from the Spaniel side as well as silky coats. The coats can be curly in places and is like the curls you will find on a Poodle.
You may find that your Cavapoo develops Poodle tight curls on the head and paws while the tail and back are predominantly Spaniel.
There is really no way of telling where the Poodle tight curls will appear.
The Cavapoo coat is medium to long. It is classed as curly and wavy in texture. You will notice when you brush your hand against the fur that it is dense.
Cavapoos have inherited the winter-type coat from the Poodle side.
The coats can come in several different shades:
Bi coloured such as chestnut and white
Tri-coloured such as black, white and tan combinations
The Cavapoo coat will grow long unless it is regularly clipped. Many owners keep the coat short to prevent tangles. Grooming every 4-6 weeks will keep the coat in tip-top condition.
When do Cavapoos Shed the Most
Cavapoos shed the most in the Spring/Summer season. This is because they are trying to get rid of the old hair which has kept them warm through the winter.
Additionally, the amount of shedding increases when there are more daylight hours.
In the case of the Cavapoo it does not make any difference whether it is an indoor or outdoor dog. The Cavapoo sheds the same inside or outside. He will shed less during the Autumn (Fall) and Winter.
How to Combat Cavapoo Shedding/ Can I Reduce the Amount They Shed?
There are some ways that you can reduce shedding, but you should be aware that you will never stop your Cavapoo shedding completely.
If you or a family member suffers from allergies to dog dander, then this breed may not be the right one for you.
One of the best ways to reduce shedding is to watch the diet of the Cavapoo. This will affect the health of the coat.
An unbalanced diet will show itself in a coat which loses its shine and drops off. The hair follicles in the coat depend on the amount of good-quality protein which you feed your pooch.
Often dry kibble is to blame for excess shedding as there may be more carbohydrates in this than protein. It is important that you read the label and stick to a higher protein kibble.
When choosing kibble, you should make sure that it contains a minimum of between 20-25% protein. Anything less will leave you will a dog who sheds a greater deal than normal.
Equipment Help to Combat Cavapoos Shedding
Your grooming basket should contain a selection of brushes to include a clicker brush and a bristle brush.
You may also add a wide-tooth metal comb and a detangle comb. A double-sided pin and bristle brush will also come in handy.
Naturally you should have doggie shampoo and conditioner at hand. Please do not use your own products as they will dry your pooch’s hair out even more.
You will frequently use the wide-tooth comb to loosen the tangles and de-mat the hair.
It is a good idea to start grooming your Cavapoo pup at an early age.
Work up to 20 minutes a day and you will have a coat which is tangle-free and smooth, not to mention a dog who loves being handled and treated to a brush!
Are Cavapoos Considered to be Hypoallergenic?
If you are looking for a true hypoallergenic dog, then you will never find it as it does not exist. No dog is a true hypoallergenic animal.
Because one of the parents is a Poodle Cavapoos are often called hypoallergenic breeds when in fact they are simply low shedders.
If your Cavapoo has more of the Cavalier King Charles traits in him then he will not even be ‘allergy friendly.’
Allergies are caused by the dander or dead cells which all dog breeds shed. No matter what the type of coat, the dog will shed dander and hair.
Do Some Cavapoos Shed More Than Others?
On average Cavapoos shed about the same as most other dog breeds.
Their shedding is seasonal. Because of the Poodle influence the breed will shed slightly less than others such as Labradors and Retrievers.
The Cavapoo is classed as a moderate shedder although this depends on whether the traits err to the Poodle or the Spaniel side of the family.
Even in the same littler there may be one or two who shed like mad while the rest shed a whole lot less.
Unfortunately, as puppies it may be quite difficult to predict which pup will shed more or less than his siblings. Even in the same litter there will be some that shed more while others shed a lot less.
If you need to find out whether you can have a Cavapoo or not, you may want to spend some time with them.
Try to spend at least two nights with the pooch and see your own reaction before deciding to bring them into your house.
Health Reasons for Increased Shedding in Cavapoos
There are several health reasons why the Cavapoo will shed, the main one being the nutrients in the food.
Often if there is a zinc or vitamin B deficiency the dog may shed heavier.
It is better for you to start with a good quality food at an early age as this will reduce some of the shedding through puppyhood as well as into adulthood.
Cavapoos do not like loud music, lots of noise, being abused (which dog does?) and boredom, they will react by shedding more than normal.
Even though they are excitable little dogs, they don’t like rambunctious behaviour and sudden noises.
Your Cavapoo is likely to need to be close to you when there are fireworks around. In fact, you can expect to have a furry bundle nestled close to you when it gets noisy.
Female Cavapoos shed more after being in heat. She may also shed more if she is feeding pups or has recently delivered her litter.
An unbalanced thyroid will cause excess shedding so you may want to have your pooch checked out for hypothyroidism.
Sometimes older Cavapoos tend to shed more. There may be no explanation for this other than your pooch is now middle-aged or old.
You may want to start using a softer brush, which will still get the dead hair out but is also gentle when it comes into contact with the skin.
Incorrect shampoo and bath products
You may find that if you constantly use your own bath and shampoo products on your pooch, they start to shed more than normal.
Your own shampoo is formulated for humans and not for dogs and will leave their skin irritated and sensitive.
Dogs have a different pH level to humans and your shampoo may dry out your dog’s skin and cause it to flake.
Final Thoughts: Do Cavapoos Shed?
If you are planning on getting a Cavapoo because you have heard that they are a 100% non-shedding dog, then stop and think about it.
There is no such thing as a non-shedding dog. Cavapoos are only just hypoallergenic but this depends on how many of the Poodle traits they carry.
Never accept a dog from a breeder who swears that they will not shed. Even Poodles shed – not that much, but they do shed.
Expect a moderate amount of shed hair from your new puppy and a constant moderate amount from your Cavapoo through adulthood.
Compared to other breeds such as Labradors, this breed sheds significantly less. The shedding will be more in the Spring and Summer and you should see a reduction in the cooler months.
If you are determined to have your Cavapoo then you need to be prepared to get the hoover out several times a week.
Even as puppies they will leave furballs in the house and hairs on your furniture, although the hair does not have barbs on it and can easily be cleaned up.
The coat of the pup who has more Poodle genes than Spaniel tends to be sleek and curly sometimes with tight curls, rather than the Spaniel side, which tends to be wavier and smoother.
As a puppy you can expect the coat to be dense, soft and fluffy. This is to protect the little pups from injury as they roll around.
Even as pups the Cavapoo is lively and excitable. As your pup gets older the coat will change to a less fluffy coat.
So, considering that the average Cavapoo sheds moderately, more than some dogs, and less than others, you may decide that this breed is for you simply because they are so adorable, so people friendly and certain to lighten and brighten your day – every day!