Living With a Tibetan Terrier: How Much Do They Really Shed?

Tibetian Terrier sleeping on the bed with his toy

I took my Tibetan Terrier on a play date recently. The date was with another Tibetan Terrier that was a little under one year old, and the owner (a friend of mine) was still learning about her dog. She had a lot of questions, and one was a particular concern for her.

She was concerned about how much Tibetan Terriers shed because of how their coat looked and felt. The answer I gave her was one she was not expecting as looks are a bit deceptive.

So how much do Tibetan Terriers shed? Tibetan Terriers are very low shedders, and you’ll barely notice their hair flying around the house. However, you will notice a bit more shedding during seasonal changes which occur twice a year. But this too can be minimized when you prioritize your dog’s grooming.

The Tibetan Terrier comes really close to being classified as a non-shedding dog breed. This is because even when they do shed, it will hardly be noticeable. I know a few people (myself included) who opted for the TT because of how suited they are for people suffering from allergies.

So, with this breed, you can go without worrying about cleaning up clumps of hair on your couch and floor on a day to day basis.

How Bad the Tibetan Terrier Shedding Really Is and What’s It Like?

Tibetan Terriers are double-coated dogs, which simply means that they have a top coat and an undercoat. They are protected in warmer and colder weather by their undercoat, which is resistant to moisture. This makes the Tibetan Terrier a very versatile breed as they can withstand just about any weather condition.

A lot of people assume that dog breeds with longer coat shed the most. I, too, used to think that way until I began to do my research. Tibetan Terriers, with their long woolly coat, are very low shedders. Compared to a lot of other dog breeds, you can live with a TT and hardly worry about having dog hair all over the house.

I have gone a few days without finding fur on my floors on so many occasions. Tibetan Terriers are simply one of the best dogs to have if you’re not a fan of vacuuming daily or can’t stand the sight of fur in your home and car.

I’m not saying you will never find hair in your home because you will. TTs are ‘low shedders’ not ‘no shedders,’ so you will find some strays here and there, but I can bet you will not find huge clumps of hair on your couch.

Below are some of the best ways to describe what a Tibetan Terrier shedding is like from my six years old Mayor.

  • On the floor: Finding clumps of dog hair on your floor means that you have gone days, probably weeks without using a vacuum cleaner on your floor. With Tibetan Terriers, you can live without carpets and vacuums (for a few days), and your floor wouldn’t be packed with fur. Sometimes, I have to squint before sighting a strand of dog hair on my floor. However, this changes during shedding season where my dog sheds a bit more but not so much that it becomes uncomfortable.
  • On the couch, curtain, and other upholstery: I never have problems with this. Usually, when I do a general cleanup around the house, I go in there and try to dust everything out. Dog hair is hardly ever among the things that fall of my curtain and couch. The hair of the Tibetan Terrier is not pointy, so it never sticks into the fabric of my couch and other upholstery.
  • Clinging to clothes: If you’re the type that hates to find dog hair on your clothes after freshening up, then maybe you should go for the Tibetan Terrier. Because they do not shed so much, the chances are that you won’t find hair clinging to your clothes. But if you do come into contact with your dog, you might leave with a few strands clinging to the fabric of your cloth. And seeing as they have fine hair, you will have to do more than dusting your clothes to get the hair off.
  • On the hand after petting your dog: You can pet your Tibetan Terrier as much as you want without having this problem. Their coat doesn’t shed much, nor shed all the time, so there’s little chance of finding hair on your hand after touching your pet. This, however, can happen if you pet your dog with wet hands.
  • Allergies: Many people opt for Tibetan Terriers because they are one of the dog breeds that are close to being hypoallergenic. When they shed, their coat is easy on the sinuses as they hardly ever cause any reactions. Although there are no dog breeds that are a hundred percent hypoallergenic, TTs are a great breed to adopt if you are suffering from allergies.

Tibetan Terriers are not regular shedders like German Shorthaired Pointers. They shed very lightly all year round except during the shedding season (Spring and Fall). This is generally when they shed their winter coat in preparation for warmer seasons.

TTs need regular grooming as their coats are long. Though they do not shed so much, their coats must be adequately maintained to remain clean and healthy, hence preventing excessive shedding. If your TT is the outdoor type, it means he will get dirt on his coat, often resulting in the need for regular grooming.

How to Reduce the Shedding?

The fact of the matter is that with Tibetan Terriers, you can comfortably live without needing to find ways to reduce their shedding. That’s one of the beauties of owning a Tibetan Terrier.

However, if there is a way to minimize the shedding even more, it won’t hurt you to try. I have put together a list of tips for minimizing shedding in Tibetan Terriers.

Best tips for reducing Tibetan Terrier shedding:

  • Using quality shampoo: Using good quality shampoos to bathe your dog is one of the best actions you can take for your TT’s fur. A good shampoo will ensure the natural oil contained in your dog’s skin doesn’t get washed away. It will also make sure the health of their skin is much improved. I recommend any of these two shampoos for your Tibetan Terrier: herbal shampoo, which is suitable for long-haired dog breeds and oatmeal shampoo, which is perfect for every dog breed.
  • Regular baths: Bathing your dog every one to two weeks is required to keep their coats shiny and healthy. These baths should be done with quality shampoos to get the best results. However, over-bathing your TT can cause their skin to get irritated, which will invariably lead to excessive shedding.
  • Regular brushing: Your TT needs to be brushed regularly to avoid tangles and matting. This should also be done to keep his coat in the very best of shapes. A slicker brush of excellent quality will suffice for removing tangles and mats. A pin brush is also great for grooming his outer coat. Regular brushing of your Tibetan Terrier helps to remove tangles and debris and circulate the oils on his coat. It also removes dead and loose hair on your dog’s coat, which makes an effective method of curbing excess shedding.
  • Add olive oil or flaxseed oil to your dog’s meals: This is a simple yet effective way of caring for your dog’s coat. As unbelievable as it sounds, just a teaspoon of olive or flaxseed oil to their meals will go a long way to improve their coat. This is because these oils are rich in Omega-6 and Omega-3 acids.

The methods I’ve mentioned are great to try out, and they won’t cost you much. However, you can choose to forgo practicing them (but bathing and brushing should be done nonetheless) because these breeds do not shed much anyway.

But seeing as these tips will improve your dog’s well-being and reduce their shedding, I think you should develop a habit of doing them.

Dealing with Shedding in the House

With Tibetan Terriers, you don’t have to worry about having to deal with so much hair flying around the house. Vacuum cleaning every once in a while is enough to clear off the shedding. However, in cases where the hair finds its way into areas where your vacuum cleaner cannot reach, other techniques will be needed to get the hair out.

Getting rid of hair on your couch, bed, and other upholstery is never too much work for me. The nature of the TT hair doesn’t allow them to stick into fabrics, so you won’t have problems getting them off.

A simple vacuum cleaner on your couch will take care of every stray hair. And even if it doesn’t, I use a quick technique to clean off dog hair from my couch.

This technique is effortless. Put on a pair of tight-fitting rubber gloves and simply wipe the fur off the couch. Rubber gloves create friction on the couch, making it easy to grab all the hair on the couch. I’ve found that this technique works a lot more than vacuum cleaners when it comes to getting TT hair off the couch.

Getting the hair off my floor is usually the easiest. A quick sweep of the floor takes care of all the hair (even though they are never much). This shouldn’t take too much time to get done, especially if your apartment isn’t too big.

There are corners of the house that a broom or vacuum cleaner may not be able to reach, like the front of the stairwell. If you find hair in such areas, you can easily clean them out with wet wipes or paper towels. The hair will stick to the wet material, and you can just easily discard it.

But if you would rather not deal with some of these cleaning and dusting, you can buy couch covers which are easier to clean.

Spotting Abnormal Shedding

Tibetan Terriers will only shed above the average amount due to a few natural factors. However, if your TT begins to shed in ways that are abnormal to you, he probably needs help.

Sometimes you might notice that your Tibetan Terrier has uneven hair loss (losing more hair in some places more than others). And sometimes, this hair loss is accompanied by skin irritation, redness, fever, or itchiness. You have to understand that this occurrence is abnormal and is an indication that there is a problem.

A lot of things can cause abnormal hair loss in your Tibetan Terrier. Some of them you can easily remedy by yourself, and others you would need to visit a vet to fix.

For instance, an unhealthy diet can cause your dog to shed abnormally. The same thing will happen if you feed your dog food that they are allergic to (yes, dogs get allergies too). You can control this by changing your TT’s diet.

However, certain abnormal hair losses are symptoms of other severe health problems you might not be able to diagnose accurately. This is when you need to see a vet for professional help and counseling.

When you notice abnormal shedding in your dog, I will advise you to seek medical attention immediately. Detecting it early could be the key to saving your dog a lot of suffering, so try to be vigilant.

My Final Thoughts

The Tibetan Terrier is an intelligent, loveable, and affectionate dog breed, and they make excellent house pets. They make great companions for just about everyone (kids included).

One of their many perks is their low shedding, which makes them desirable, especially to people suffering from allergies. However, with this perk comes responsibility.

This breed requires regular grooming to keep it looking neat and maintained. This should not be a turn off for you, however. If the chore seems like a lot, you can outsource and pay a groomer to get the job done.

The Tibetan Terrier is one of the best dog companions out there, and if you’re considering adopting one, I think you are making a superb choice.

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