Cavapoos, also known as Cavoodles, are one of the most sought after varieties of poodle mix breeds. This popularity isn’t only because of their adorable appearance, but also due to claims that they’re allergy-friendly or even hypoallergenic.
Of the two parents breeds of the Cavapoo, the Poodle is hypoallergenic while the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is not. What does that mean for the resulting Cavapoo puppies?
Are Cavapoos hypoallergenic? While not guaranteed to be hypoallergenic, Cavapoos are allergy-friendly and usually a good choice for allergy-sufferers. In a survey of 72 Cavapoo owners with allergies, 76% said they experienced no symptoms from their dog.
Here’s the data from our survey to see for yourself…
What can we learn from this data? While there’s a good likelihood that a Cavapoo will not trigger your allergies, it’s far from certain. So, how can we put the odds in your favor?
Keep reading as we’ll discuss what you can do to select a Cavapoo puppy with the greatest odds of being hypoallergenic. We’ll also show you some simple tricks Cavapoo owners can use to minimize potential symptoms they experience from their dog.
Can You Be Allergic to Cavapoos?
There are plenty of people who are allergic to some, or all, Cavapoos. Allergic reactions can vary significantly depending on the individual human as well as the individual dog. You may be allergic to one Cavapoo but not another.
While nobody can guarantee that Cavapoos will cooperate with your allergies, the best indicator we have to make an informed decision by is how frequently other allergy-suffers report symptoms.
Are Cavapoos Good for Allergies?
When we surveyed 72 Cavapoo owners with allergies, 76% experienced no symptoms to their dog, 22% experienced lessened symptoms, and 1% experienced significant symptoms.
Based on those results, Cavapoos are usually a fairly safe choice for those who experience mild dog allergies. If you only have mild allergies, a 98% chance of experiencing lessened or no symptoms is a great bet.
However, if you typically experience severe allergic reactions to dogs, only having lessened symptoms may not be acceptable. A 23% shot at not being able to physically tolerate living with your new Cavapoo is probably not worth the risk.
Getting a Cavapoo not only comes with a big price tag, but it’s also a huge emotional investment. You don’t want to put your family in the unfortunate situation of choosing between your health and your new dog. That’s not fair to anyone.
Luckily, there are alternative breeds to the Cavapoo which may be safer bets for severe allergy sufferers. Not only do you have purebred options like the Poodle, but there are hypoallergenic Poodle crosses as well.
Some Poodle mix breeds like the Schnoodle, Poochon, and Maltipoo are crosses between two hypoallergenic breeds. This makes them far less likely to trigger allergic reactions than when the Poodle is crossed with a non-hypoallergenic breed.
What Causes Cavapoo Allergies?
Contrary to popular belief, allergic reactions to pets aren’t directly caused by their coat type or length. Dog allergies are usually caused by flakes of dead skin, called dander.
The correlation between this dander and your dog’s coat is that increased shedding causes more dander to occur and spreads it around. This is why low-shedding breeds, like the Cavapoo, are more allergy-friendly.
While dander is the most common pet allergy, reactions may also be triggered by saliva or urine. If this is the case, your symptoms may occur with any breed of dog, “hypoallergenic” or not.
What Type of Cavapoo is Best for Allergies?
When purchasing or adopting a puppy, their generation plays a critical role in estimating the probability that you’ll have a hypoallergenic Cavapoo.
Put simply, a Cavapoo’s generation tells how close in DNA a dog is to a purebred Cavapoo or a purebred Poodle. The higher percentage of Poodle, the more likely a Cavapoo is to be allergy-friendly.
A first generation, F1 Cavapoo is theoretically 50% Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and 50% Poodle in DNA. While the F1 Cavapoo is considered allergy-friendly, the odds of it being completely hypoallergenic are comparatively low to other generations.
An F1B Cavapoo is more likely to be allergy-friendly or hypoallergenic. This generation is 75% Poodle and 25% Cavalier King Charles Spaniel because it backcrosses a F1 Cavapoo to a Poodle.
An F1BB Cavapoo is the most likely generation to be hypoallergenic, and usually the safest bet for allergy sufferers. The theoretical DNA split is 87.5% Poodle and 12.5% Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.
There are other generations of Cavapoos as well, each with their own estimated DNA splits. Use this handy table as a reference. The important thing is that the more Poodle DNA, the better the odds are of your Cavapoo being hypoallergenic.
Keep in mind, genetics are incredibly hard to predict and nothing is guaranteed. Avoid breeders who claim their Cavapoos will be 100% hypoallergenic, as this is a huge red flag of an unethical or uneducated breeder.
Signs You May Be Allergic to Your Cavapoo
The most common signs of an allergic reaction to Cavapoos are…
- Itchy, red, or watery eyes
- Facial pain or pressure
- Runny nose
- Itchy skin
While those may seem mild and tolerable, symptoms can be more severe. Those with asthma may even experience difficulty breathing. As always, talk to your doctor if you think you may be experiencing an allergic reaction to your dog.
How to Minimize Potential Cavapoo Allergies
If you’re one of the unlucky percentage of Cavapoo owners who experience allergic symptoms it can be extremely disheartening. However, this doesn’t mean you have to suffer for the entirety of your Cavapoo’s lifespan.
Your doctor will be able to advise you on medical options of symptom management for dog allergies. In addition, there are also some simple tricks Cavapoo owners can use to reduce their symptoms.
Keep Your Dog Out of the Bedroom & Off Furniture
I know, it’s incredibly hard to resist having a fluffy snuggle buddy at night! However, having your bedroom be a “dog-free zone” allows your body to recuperate in a low-allergen environment.
Sofas and couches can also collect dander easily and are difficult to keep clean. While keeping your Cavapoo off the furniture may make you feel bad, you don’t have to. There are so many super comfy pet beds that your dog will love and are easily washable!
Invest in a Quality Vacuum & Use it Regularly
All vacuums are not created equal, and investing in one specifically designed for pet hair can be a real difference-maker. They suck up little bits of dander that other vacuums may miss.
Make sure to choose one like this BISSELL model available on Amazon that uses a HEPA filter to trap allergens. Of course, no vacuum will help if you don’t use it regularly—we recommend around once a week!
Use a HEPA Air Purifier
Particles of dander aren’t just on your carpets, it can be in the air as well! Having a HEPA air purifier in your house can help reduce the allergens in your air. Start by placing one in the room where your Cavapoo spends most of their time.
Bathe & Brush Your Cavapoo Frequently
When it comes to managing dander, it’s important to start at the source—your Cavapoo! Frequent brushing and bathing can help reduce shedding and dander before they become a problem.
Brushing your Cavapoo every day or every other day is a good idea to stay on top of shedding and keep their coat well-maintained. Bathing should happen monthly, but you can increase that to as often as every other week if necessary.
To best manage Cavapoo allergies and shedding, I recommend the following products that will make grooming a breeze:
- Chris Christensen Big G Slicker Brush – Expensive, but by far the best slicker brush I’ve ever used and it’s highly recommended by members of our community.
- FURminator De-Shedding Tool – Only necessary if your Cavapoo is a big shedder. The small size should be good for most Cavapoo sizes.
- Burt’s Bees Shed Control Shampoo – One of the few shampoos designed to reduce shedding that is natural and safe for puppies
Is a Cavapoo Puppy Right for Your Family?
There are pros and cons to every breed, including the Cavapoo. When searching for a puppy, take your time to compare it to breeds like the Goldendoodle or the Cockapoo for example.
As far as Cavapoo allergies are concerned, it’s important to remember that not all Cavapoos are hypoallergenic. If you have mild dog allergies, you’ll likely be okay with a Cavapoo. However, if you have more severe allergies or are fairly risk-averse, you may be better off looking into Poodle mixes with two hypoallergenic parent breeds that will be safer options.