Hairlessness is a rare trait in animals. However, sometimes it can develop due to environmental and other factors. You probably saw some hairless cat breeds, and might have wondered, are there any hairless dog breeds too?
Yes, there are! Although they are pretty rare, there are several hairless dog breeds that are born without hair. Today, we’re exploring these adorable, no-hair dogs and learning more on how should a hairless dog be taken care of!
This unusual trait for, these “not-so-furry” friends, is usually the result of dominant hairless genes. This is the case with the majority of hairless breeds that we will mention in this article. The only hairless breed that has recessive hairless genes is the American Hairless Terrier.
On the other hand, other dog breeds can become hairless due to a skin condition called alopecia. In this case, their hairlessness isn’t an attribute these dogs should have in natural, healthy conditions.
These types of dogs are often chosen by people that have allergies to dogs. Thanks to their no-shedding traits, (they don’t have fur to shed), they are less likely to cause an allergy reaction in persons sensitive to dog hair or dander.
1. Chinese Crested Dog
The most famous of all hairless breeds is definitely the Chinese Crested Dog. Just like most other hairless dog breeds, these dogs can come in two varieties, with fur and with no fur, which are respectively named the Powderpuff and the Hairless. In the case of the Chinese Crested, the hairless variant isn’t completely without fur. In fact, it has tufts of fur on the paws, tail, and head, and its amount of body hair can vary.
Some Chinese Crested dogs can also have some fur on the muzzle and have an almost near-full coat of hair. If you’re getting a Crested, be aware that sometimes they can come without premolar teeth, which in their case, is not considered a fault.
2. Xoloitzcuintli – Mexican Hairless Dog
Xoloitzcuintli which is pronounced “show-low-eats-queen-tlee” is the ancient Aztec dog of the gods. They are loving companions and make amazing guard dogs. They come in three sizes (toy, miniature, and standard) and can also be hairless or coated.
This 3,000-year-old breed was actually found to be a result of a mixture of the aboriginal pre-Columbian Xoloitzcuintle with southern European herding dog breeds. These dogs can also come in different colors and can be black, gray, slate, red, liver.
3. Peruvian Inca Orchid
Just like its name says Peruvian Hairless Dog is a dog of Peruvian pre-Incan origins. This breed is among rare hairless dog breeds that are recognized by the AKC. However, in this case, the coated variety of this dog is disqualified from conformation showing.
Similarly to Xoloitzcuintle dog, a Peruvian Inca Orchid can also vary in size and can be small, medium or large. These smooth, elegant dogs are smart and agile and are known to be great hunters. Hairlessness varies from puppy to puppy, but so does the color – these puppies can be born with pink, black, brown, gray, tan or white skin. Their eye color is also linked to the skin color, so a darker Orchid will have darker eyes than a lighter-skinned Orchid.
4. Ecuadorian Hairless Dog
The Ecuadorian Hairless Dog is a hairless dog whose origins come from Santa Elena Peninsula in Ecuador. They are considered to be the rarest breed of the hairless dogs. Ecuadorian Hairless Dogs are actually descendants of the Peruvian Hairless dogs, which come from Ecuador’s neighboring country.
They are distinguished from other breeds for being almost completely hairless on their bodies and heads. It was found that Ecuadorian Hairless Dogs also lack premolar teeth. It is still a mystery how this occurs, and why hairlessness is linked with the absence of premolar teeth.
5. Argentine Pila Dog
Another rare hairless breed you probably haven’t heard of is the Argentine Pila Dog! It looks like South America is definitely the richest continent when it comes to hairless breeds. However, this companion dog of a small to medium size is also believed to be an ancestor of the ancient Peruvian Hairless Dog.
These dogs are great runners and climbers, and they can jump quite long distances. Argentine Pila dog has a loving personality and are great companions for families living in apartments since they don’t shed at all! They can also be good watchdogs because they are quite wary of strangers. Pila dogs don’t have premolar teeth either, and can often have other teeth missing as well.
6. American Hairless Terrier
American Hairless Terrier is the only breed that has the recessive hairless gene. This breed was recognized as a separate terrier breed in January 2004 by the United Kennel Club.
This dog coming from Louisiana, has a smooth skin, wedge-shaped head, and erect, V-shaped ears. American Hairless Terriers can come in both hairless and coated varieties, and as you probably can guess, the hairless variety is considered to be the hypoallergenic type.
7. Hairless Chihuahua
Although this isn’t a hairless breed that we can completely compare to other hairless breeds, there are some breeders that breed Chihuahuas without fur. However, it is believed that hairless Chihuahuas are the result of the over breeding in the attempt to produce a Chihuahua of a specific colored coat.
These Chihuahuas are so adorable and are also a great option for allergic people. However, this hairless variety of the world’s smallest dog will need some additional care than their coated cousins.
8. Abyssinian Sand Terrier
The Abyssinian Sand Terrier or otherwise African Hairless Dog is one of the oldest hairless breeds in the world. This breed had no hair on its entire body, except for a few tufts on the head and tail. Their skin tone varies between different shades of grey, often with dull pinkish blotches scattered randomly.
With this breed you can expect minimum grooming sessions, keep regular bathing to avoid skin drynes. Due to their skin, they are sensitive to skin cancer and overall skin diseases. During the winter they will need additional care. Don’t forget – they don’t have coat to keep themselves warm.
9. Hairless Khala
There are two types of Hairless Khalas: the Hairless Khala Medio (short-legged) and the Hairless Khala Grande (long-legged). Khala Medio is medium size dog, graceful and powerful. Khala Grande gives the impression of a sight-hound, with fast moves and great agility.
In both types, color is immaterial, but most Khalas are a dark gray at maturity. These dogs are aloof, reserved, and they can be unfriendly with strangers, so it’s imperative to socialize them well. They are more suitable for an experienced dog owner.
How Do You Take Care Of A Hairless Dog?
Taking care of a hairless dog is slightly different than taking care of a regular, furry dog. The fact that they have no coat to protect them from heat, cold, or even rough playtime with other canine friends, may result in all kinds of different consequences for these dogs. Therefore it is important for all future dog owners of the above-mentioned breeds to know exactly how a hairless dog should be treated in order to avoid unnecessary health issues.
If you’re thinking of getting yourself one of these hairless dogs, you probably thought, at least for a second, that since they have no fur, they need no grooming, right? Well if this thought passed through your mind, then you’re wrong.
In fact, sometimes it is harder to take care of hairless dogs than dogs that have a long, curly coat. How is this possible? Well, first of all, a hairless dog’s skin is exposed to all kinds of irritants on a daily basis. It has no protection with the coat which makes their skin more prone to problems than with other dogs.
However, not all hairless dogs necessarily develop skin problems. What matters is that dog owners of hairless dogs should understand that taking care of a Xolo’s skin is quite different than grooming a Husky.
What is crucial in order to maintain a dog’s skin healthy is to protect it from sun rays. This means that if you have a hairless dog, you will have to invest in a good sunscreen that will protect your dog from sunburn and too much sun exposure. Sometimes sunscreen designed for children can be a great choice because they are alcohol-free and non-toxic.
Regular bathing is absolutely essential when having a hairless dog. The dog shampoo, in this case, should also be different. You would have to find one that is mild and that will maintain your dog’s pH skin level balanced. However, since these dogs need more frequent bathing than others, this means that their skin might also dry out more quickly, which is why additional moisturizers after a bath might be necessary.
However, don’t buy just any moisturizer you find. Instead, look for moisturizers that are labeled as “comedogenic” – or in plain English, as non-blocking the pores. This is highly important because otherwise, your dog might have problems with blackheads or spots.
In The Cold
The lack of coat definitely makes hairless dogs feel cooler during the summer days, but in the winter the cold is perceived much worse than in other dogs. Therefore, all dog owners of hairless dogs should provide their dogs with jumpers, coats, and rugs in order to keep them warm. However, this is not only valid for outdoors time. These dogs need winter clothes indoors as well.
Since almost all of these breeds come from South or Central America, they are quite used to hot weather and a lot of suns. If you’re living in a location of a different climate, make sure to never leave your hairless pup without a proper source of heat.