Caring and Training

The Bichon Frise and Human Allergies


The Bichon Frise is often recommended as a breed for families with allergies. It is important to discuss this with your allergist before making a decision to buy any pet. Experience shows that those with mild allergies MAY be able to share a home with a Bichon. The person with severe allergies may be at risk for a severe attack when exposed to these dogs. Others will fall between those parameters. It is important that you find out before making a purchase that your allergies will not be affected or how severely.

The best way to find out how you will react is to spend time in the presence of a Bichon. This should be done in a place where no other animals are present to avoid exposure to other allergens. The minimum amount of time would be 1-2 hours and repeated exposure is recommended. How can you arrange this? Find a friend with a Bichon or contact a breeder who will allow your family to visit for an extended time. Have each allergic person hold the animal and be in the room throughout the exposure time. Any allergic adults should be a part of this exposure even if you are buying the puppy as a childís pet.

If you do decide to buy the Bichon, realize that adult coats are different from puppy coats so allergic individual should be exposed to both. Also make sure that the puppy can be returned if this does not work out. Responsible breeders ask you to sign a contract that offers certain guarantees and you can expect to include your own agreed upon conditions before signing.

Another consideration before buying is that pets will spend some time outdoors and may bring outside allergens in on the feet and coat. He and you will be better off if he spends most of his time inside. You would be advised to find an area where he can relieve himself on concrete and then you should be a responsible dog owner by cleaning up after him. Realize that he may also bring in dander from other animals every time he goes to the groomer or to the vetís office so his coat care may be up to you. Grooming products may contain perfumes.

Now that you have looked at the allergy factor, be sure to read BEFORE YOU BUY YOUR PUPPY to find out about other considerations before you make up your mind that the Bichon (or any pet) is a part of your future. That article can be found at: