Do Spanish Water Dogs Shed? (Solved!)

Spanish Water Dogs are the true all-around working dogs.

Despite being initially bred to herd sheep, they developed into versatile farm dogs, capable of handling almost any task you put in front of them.

Spanish Water Dogs are also very playful, extremely active, and will happily join you for any outdoor activity, be it hiking, running, biking, or swimming.

All this made it increasingly popular as family dogs, especially with more outdoorsy people.

However, future owners should also be mindful of what happens when the dog comes back inside.

With breeds such as Spanish Water Dog, who have fairly long hair, potential shedding is a reason for concern for many people.

Heavy-shedding breeds can make a real mess behind them which results in a lot of cleaning work.

Below, you’ll learn do Spanish Water Dogs shed and what kind of grooming effort they require.


Do Spanish Water Dogs Shed?

Spanish Waterdogs by Perrodeaguas (CC BY-SA 2.5)

The most recognizable feature of the Spanish Water Dog is a curly, wooly, medium-long coat.

It’s what gives them an adorable, teddy bear-like appearance.

From just a look at it, Spanish Water Dog’s probably seems like a nightmare when it comes to shedding and cleaning.

However, the opposite is true.

Spanish Water Dog’s level of shedding is minimal.

This means that you won’t have to worry about your house floor, furniture, or car seats being covered with dog hair.

Your vacuuming and lint-rolling chores will be reduced to a minimum.

In addition, Spanish Water Dogs feature only a single coat, which further decreases the amount of potential shedding.

Since their hair has a wooly texture, most of it won’t be shed from their skin and spread around the house.

Are Spanish Water Dogs Hypoallergenic?

Spanish Water Dogs are a great choice for people who are rather prone to allergies.

Due to the very low level of shedding, Spanish Water Dog’s belong to the group of hypoallergenic dogs.

They’re one of the rare medium-sized dogs in this group.

Of course, you should still be aware that no dog is 100% percent hypoallergenic.

Even though your Spanish Water Dog’s shedding will be at a minimum, even a low amount of hair may have dander or saliva attached which are the main allergy triggers.

Still, they will produce a significantly lower amount of allergens, compared to the average dog, and thus, allergic people can tolerate them much better.

How To Care For a Spanish Water Dogs Coat?

Spanish Waterdogs by Perrodeaguas (CC BY-SA 2.5)

The good news for potential owners of Spanish Water Dogs is that they’re relatively low maintenance, at least when it comes to coat care.

As far as grooming is concerned, you should stick to the principle “less is more.”

Furthermore, this breed should never be aesthetically groomed as it would mess up the rustic appearance that’s the main appeal of Spanish Water Dog.

They should have the same hair length across the whole body.

The length of the hair depends on the dog’s purpose and the owner’s preference.

Dogs that are frequently outdoors should have shorter fur as it will help them keep clean and prevent dirt, mud, grass, or other debris from being stuck to their coat.

Spanish Water Dogs that are kept as show dogs usually have longer hair.

Commonly, the SWD’s coat is never brushed, combed, or blow-dried as it disrupts the coat’s natural structure and texture.


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Of course, the low maintenance doesn’t mean that you should completely forego all care for your dog’s coat.

The Spanish Water Dog should have regular baths, but no more than once a month. For bathing, you should use a mild shampoo without any heavy conditioners.

When you bathe the dog, use the shampoo as you would when washing a sweater, squeeze it through a coat.

Be careful not to rub too vigorously as that may cause matting. The hair should be thoroughly rinsed until the water is clear, with no foam.

Once done with bathing, squeeze the excess water using your hands. Do not rub the fur with the tower.

Rather, just gently use the towel to blot the fur and allow your dog to air-dry naturally, preferably in their crate.


After a few months of growth, the hair of a Spanish Water Dog will start to form characteristic cords.

Those dreadlock-like cords give your dog its cute looks but do need some maintenance.

At some areas of the body, mostly around the neck, ears, legs, and the rear, the cording coat may start to mat.

This can create knots that may cause some discomfort to the dog and you should attend to the matted areas.

You can have the professional do this for you, but it’s also something you can do by yourself.

When taking care of matted hair, look for the separation of two wispy ends and carefully pull them apart.

You can do this either from the skin up or from the hair top towards the skin.

Dematting corded dogs can be a rather tedious process, but it will help them feel more comfortable and keep them healthier.

How Do You Trim a Spanish Water Dog?

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Traditionally, Spanish Water Dog’s cords are never trimmed to prevent messing up their coat texture.

And, if trimmed, it should never be to provide decorative features but to maintain the same hair length all over the body.

Trimming the cords as they get longer may cause them to have blunt ends which disrupts the dog’s natural looks.

Plenty of owners choose to shear their Spanish Water Dogs completely as this is the most practical and keeps the dogs clean.

However, when sheared, their hair still shouldn’t be shorter than 1/3 of an inch (1 cm).

If you shear your dog, it’s best to do it in May or October.

Doing this once a year encourages healthy growth and helps the hair grow naturally and consistently.

It allows the coat to regenerate and develop new, healthy cords.


Spanish Water Dogs are perfect for more sensitive owners or those who don’t quite enjoy investing a lot of work in dog grooming.

They are very low shedders and the household with Spanish Water Dog will be relatively easy to clean.

In addition, this also means that this breed is rather safe for those prone to allergies.

A big part of SWD’s charm is their rustic and sort of scruffy appearance.

Luckily for the more lazy owners, maintaining this natural look doesn’t require much work.

Your dog won’t need regular brushing or combing like most other breeds.

However, this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t care for your dog at all. Some moderate maintenance is necessary to keep them happy and healthy.

Authored By

Madeline Wright

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