How Much Do Bichons Frises Shed?

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How Much Do Bichons Frises Shed?The bichon frise is known for being hypoallergenic, but does that mean they never shed? With their powder puff coats, it seems unthinkable that shedding is never a problem with the bichon frise.

So does this breed shed, and if so, how much?

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How Much Do Bichons Frises Shed?

Bichon frise’s shed just as many similar breeds, but they have a trick up the sleeve to make it seem otherwise. The bichon frise is often said to have a non-shedding coat. While they do seem to shed less than other dogs, all dogs shed to some extent.

Moreover, it is not that bichon’s shed less in general, but rather about their coat, particularly its density and texture. You won’t notice much fur lying around because of the hair-like texture of the breed’s coat. When fur falls out, it is so meshed in the rest of the coat that it just remains there.

If a bichon frise is not properly groomed, the process, as mentioned above, leads to matting. While it is possible to detangle a bichon frise to a certain extent, typically it means a trip to the doggy parlor for a full shave. Unfortunately, many dog breeders don’t explain this process properly, perpetuating the misconception that bichons frises don’t shed. The bichon frise is not a hypoallergenic dog breed per se; the coat just gives the impression that it is.

When Do Bichons Frises Shed the Most?

Bichon’s shed all year round, although their coat makes it seem as though they barely shed at all. This means that there is no specific season that your adult bichon frise will leave more fur lying around than usual.

That said, there is one occasion in a bichon frise’s life when they shed noticeably. That is because they need to shed their entire puppy coat while replacing it with their adult coat. During this time, your pup will shed a lot. It all starts when a bichon pup is around six months old. The process can take a while. Some bichons frises only have their fully grown adult coat at around three years old. Fortunately, the amount of shedding drops off a lot long before then.

3 Reasons Your Bichon Frise Might Shed Excessively


Underlying Illness

To find the cause of excessive shedding, you need to look for potential symptoms that could indicate a health problem. Spotting these kinds of symptoms when they arise is key to getting your dog on the right treatment plan as soon as possible. These symptoms can include:

  • Skin irritation
  • Balding
  • Sores
  • Excessive scratching or licking

If there is an underlying health concern, your vet should be able to determine the probable cause. Several conditions can contribute to excessive shedding. These include:

  • Bacterial and fungal infections
  • Allergic reactions
  • Kidney problems
  • Liver disease
  • Thyroid and adrenal diseases
  • Reactions to medication
  • Various forms of cancer
  • Immune diseases

Many of these conditions are treatable but can worsen rapidly if left unattended. Consider your vet’s advice and start the recommended treatment plan immediately if possible. There may be lifestyle changes in cases where there is no remedy that can improve your bichon’s quality of life.

Nutritional Imbalances

A dog’s coat is generally a pretty good reflection of their overall health. Over the years, there have been many trends and ideas about what nutrients give a dog a healthy coat. The truth is that a healthy coat is the result of many important foods and nutrients.

Some of the more popular suggestions are omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, but even these alone can’t guarantee your dog healthy skin and coat. Trendy supplements make bold promises of providing all your dog needs for a healthy coat. However, the only way to ensure that your bichon frise is getting all the nutrition they need is via a healthy, balanced diet.

What constitutes a healthy, balanced diet varies from breed to breed and dog to dog. Characteristics such as size, energy levels, and unique deficiencies play an important role in formulating your Bichon Frise’s perfect diet. Furthermore, nutritional requirements change throughout a dog’s life.

If you suspect that your Bichon’s diet is not fulfilling their nutritional requirements, consult your vet about making the necessary changes.


Our pets are susceptible to stress, but we aren’t always great at figuring out the cause. That is because our pets, dogs included, don’t experience the world in the same way we humans do.

A new dog in the neighborhood or a trespassing cat might not even catch your attention. However, both can be a source of stress for your bichon frise. There is any number of reasons that your bichon may be stressed. The most likely reasons are:

Canine Separation Anxiety

Bichon frises are incredibly susceptible to separation anxiety. So much so that without training, it is likely that a bichon will develop the disorder to some degree. Bichons are companion dogs but turned up to 11. Many years of selective breeding have ingrained a character that becomes incredibly attached to its owner.

The extreme attachment may seem adorable at first, with your bichon frise on the verge of hysterics at the possibility of being left without you. It is extremely stressful for the dog, though, which can lead to many behavioral issues, alongside the stress that can lead to excessive shedding.

Treating canine separation anxiety involves gradually desensitizing your bichon to the idea of being left without you. The process can take time and will require endless amounts of patience. Therefore, it is better to try to avoid it by consulting a professional dog trainer early on.


Aging is one of the most overlooked reasons that a dog may be suffering from chronic stress. Of course, humans experience this as well, but it is also better managed because it is better understood.

Aging bichons frises do not have the luxury of fully understanding what is happening to their bodies and minds. As a result, some of the more notable changes can lead to chronic stress. Such changes include confusion, loss of hearing and sight, memory loss, and degrading mobility.

There is no exact science to addressing age-related chronic stress in dogs. However, keeping them comfortable, in routine, and not exposing them to unfamiliar situations can ease their stress.

Loud Noises

We all know that fireworks terrify dogs, sending them into a state of debilitating fear. Of course, not all of your bichon frise’s reactions to other loud sounds will be quite as dramatic. However, that does not mean that other loud sounds don’t cause dogs to become stressed.

Humans are almost unique in our ability to adapt our sensory perception to our environment in a very short timeframe. As a result, we don’t become stressed by sounds that we are constantly exposed to. That means that while you are sitting pretty, not noticing the sound of your neighbor’s lawnmower, your dog could experience severe anxiety because of the noise.

It is a challenge only amplified by the fact that dogs have much better hearing than humans. That means that even when you suspect that a sound may be the cause of your bichon’s anxiety, you may not be able to distinguish the exact source. Unfortunately, it is rarely possible to isolate your bichon frise from a distressing noise. The best option is to offer the dog refuge and put on some white noise or an appliance to drown out the offending sound.

If the problem becomes too severe, it may become necessary to rehome your dog for their own wellbeing.

New People, Pets, Places

While any dog might become stressed out by huge changes, Bichon frises can be sensitive to even the smallest changes. Therefore, anything new can trigger a stress response in your Bichon. The most common cause is new pets. It can be a new dog, a cat, or even a bird. A bichon can experience the new pet as competition for your attention and an immediate threat to the status quo.

New people can have a similar effect, although the people in question would have to be around consistently for the stress to become chronic and severe enough to cause excessive shedding.

Moving is hard on any dog, except when it’s not. Most dogs will have some level of anxiety when first moving to a new home, while others will get on with it as though nothing is awry. Bichons frises tend to lean towards the former. It can take time for them to settle in, during which they may suffer from stress. In serious cases, that stress could lead to health problems and excessive shedding.

The best medicine is routine. Stick to feeding times, walking schedules, and any other routines that your dog is used to. You can also try to keep things as familiar as possible. For example, keep some of your old furniture, don’t replace your dog’s bed, their food and water bowls, or their toys.

Keep as much of ‘the new’ at bay for as long as possible. If possible, don’t change your personal routine. But, most importantly, remain patient.


As strange as it may seem, extended periods of boredom can stress your dog out. Staying at home, avoiding walks, and not engaging your Bichon can all lead to boredom. Fortunately, this is the easiest cause of canine stress to address.

Offer your bichon more stimulation and exercise.

How to Recognize Canine Anxiety

Dogs don’t express their feelings or thoughts the way that we do. They mostly rely on body language and subtle cues. Even the most experienced pet parents struggle to pick up on every signal. Here are a few things to look out for:

1. Growling and Whining

Dogs growl for many reasons. It could mean that they feel threatened, that they are being challenged, that they need to defend a resource etc. If there is no obvious reason for your dog to growl, it may be a sign of stress.

Whining is a somewhat automatic response in dogs. Just like growling, it may be an indicator that your bichon feels stressed and is at risk of excessive shedding. Look for environmental cues that could be the cause of your dog’s dismay.

2. Body Language

As one of the primary ways dogs communicate, their body language can tell you a lot about their level of stress. For example, tucked ears, a tucked tail, and lip licking are all potential stress indicators.

The most compelling indication that your dog is stressed is if they show the whites of their eyes. While each individual sign can convey stress, a combination of them is more likely to confirm it. Context is key when trying to interpret a dog’s body language. Try to gauge everything in the environment that your dog might be responding to.

3. Pacing

Pacing is one of the clearest and easiest to read signs that your bichon frise is stressed. It means that something is keeping them from settling down.

Therefore, it can be a huge help in figuring out what is causing the stress. For example, if your dog starts pacing in response to something happening, that thing is likely the root of the stress.

In older dogs, pacing could also be an early indication of dementia.

Limit Your Bichon Frise’s Shedding

Aside from addressing any and all of the reasons mentioned above that your bichon frise may be shedding excessively, the most important thing is frequent and thorough grooming. Yes, bichons frises are relatively high-maintenance. Unfortunately, there is no recommendable way to limit your dog from shedding the appropriate amount for their breed.

It is not a problem you are likely to encounter with a bichon frise in any case. An adult bichon will only leave excessive fur lying around if something is wrong.


The bichon frise is considered one of the lowest-shedding dog breeds, although this is largely due to the texture and density of their fur. Bichons shed the same amount as many similar breeds, but the hair-like fur is so dense and fuzzy that it traps the shedding fur.

If your bichon is shedding excessively and visibly, there is likely a reason, be it an underlying health condition, a problem with nutrition, or stress.

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