16 Low-Shedding Dogs That Don’t Need Lots of Exercise

Finding a low-shedding dog is great but coming across a breed that also doesn’t require an hour of daily exercise is like hitting the jackpot. You two can spend lazy weekend mornings in bed or weeknight evenings binging Netflix together.

What kind of dogs are both low-shedding and low-exercise? Here’s the list:

  1. Shih Tzu
  2. Chihuahua
  3. Havanese
  4. Affenpinscher
  5. Bulldog
  6. Japanese Chin
  7. Maltese
  8. Yorkshire Terrier
  9. Bichon Frise
  10. French Bulldog
  11. Chinese Crested
  12. Irish Wolfhound
  13. Bolognese Dog
  14. Boston Terrier
  15. Tibetan Terrier
  16. Glen of Imaal Terrier

Keep in mind, however, that all dogs need exercise.

We've done our best to bring you the lowest shedding breeds that typically don't require lots of daily exercise, but all dogs need some form of daily activity to be healthy.

Also worth mentioning is that, even if a breed is generally considered to be a couch potato, it does depend on the individual dog, because each dog is unique. So if you're unsure about how much exercise your dog needs, it may be best to speak with a qualified veterinarian.

With that being said, let's get started!

Ahead, we'll examine each of the above breeds and their propensity for shedding as well as how much exercise they need, from very little to more moderate exercise.

1. Shih Tzu

Portait of a Shih Tzu laying outside.

Some Shih Tzu owners like to keep this dog’s coat neat and trimmed while others leave its fur free-flowing, usually adding a bow to the dog’s head to contain the hair there. Shih Tzus shed a bit regardless of their coat length, but it’s nothing serious.

The longer the coat, the more time you have to spend brushing it. Make sure you leave at least a little bit of time for exercise, although that’s really about as much as this breed needs, a little bit. A short play session or a walk will tire the Shih Tzu out.

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2. Chihuahua

Chihuahua walking outside.

Although most people are familiar with short-haired Chihuahuas, this breed can have longer hair as well. Regardless of the fur length, the small, spunky dog from Mexico is a low-shedding breed. The long-haired Chi will shed slightly more seasonally because it’s double-coated.

Due to their diminutive size, it doesn’t take much exertion to tire out a Chihuahua. Even if you have a small apartment, playing indoors when combined with walks outside will surely spend this dog’s energy.

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3. Havanese

White Havanese dog standing on a tree trunk.

The bold personality of a Havanese makes the small dog a popular one, as does its boundless love for its family. This Cuban dog has long fur that takes longer to grow out and shed, which means you won’t have to worry about him shedding too often.

Moderate exercise is perfect for this dog, such as an indoor or outdoor play session or a short but fast-paced walk around the neighborhood.

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4. Affenpinscher

Affenpinscher standing on grass.

One look at the fuzzball that is the Affenpinscher and you might assume this small breed sheds lots, but it doesn’t. The canine nicknamed the Monkey Terrier has a rough, single-layered coat. Grooming that coat isn’t challenging in the slightest, which makes the Affenpinscher a great dog for those who are always on the go.

Like the Chihuahua, the Affenpinscher is a small dog that doesn’t need a lot of space to run and play. It has moderate activity levels, so do make sure you take at least a little bit of time each day for a nice walk with your fluffy friend.

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5. Bulldog

English Bulldog lying on the grass.

Although they look perpetually disgruntled, Bulldogs are sweet, friendly dogs that stay calm in many situations. Their short hair grows back quickly, which makes the Bulldog a slightly heavier shedder compared to the other dogs I’ve discussed. Even still, I wouldn’t say he sheds a lot.

This is one canine that’s more mellow than active.

Regular walks are still a necessity, but if you’re the lazy type, the Bulldog will be right there with you eager to lounge around. Avoid taking this dog out during hot periods, as Bulldogs have breathing troubles that are exacerbated in humidity and heat.

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6. Japanese Chin

Cute Japanese Chin surrounded by green grass and flowers.

A majestic little dog, the Japanese Chin is only slightly active, preferring to roam around in the yard or take slow but enjoyable walks with its owner. They’re charming but can be stubborn as well, so keep your Japanese Chin leashed when exploring new territory.

Does its long, lovely coat shed much? Some, but not to excess.

You’ll notice more shedding in the winter and before the summer, as these are the two periods where seasonal shedding is most rampant. Since the Japanese Chin is a single-coated dog, it loses less fur than a double-coated one would.

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7. Maltese

Small white Maltese Dog standing on large rock.

The long, luxurious coat of a Maltese is not conducive to long bouts of vigorous exercise. That said, this dog does tend to have a lot of energy, so you’ll need to expend it somehow.

Its silky coat is low-shedding but will require almost daily grooming to maintain. The work is worth it, as a well-groomed Maltese is very beautiful.

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8. Yorkshire Terrier

Yorkshire Terrier in the park on a green lawn.

Rivaling a Maltese’s coat is that of the Yorkshire Terrier, which also features flowy, elegant fur. This small breed won’t shed too many of its lovely hairs throughout the house, and daily grooming helps control its coat.

Exercise the Yorkie every day, but only for short periods, as this is a tiny dog!

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9. Bichon Frise

Cute Bichon Frise in the park.

Peppy, fluffy, and adorable, the fuzzball that is the Bichon Frise might look like it sheds heaps of fur, but it doesn’t. You will have to commit to daily brushing and grooming though.

Its level of physical fitness is low, and the Bichon Frise can practically exercise itself when it runs throughout the house at random intervals. 

Be sure to provide daily playtime for this breed and train the Bichon Frise well. Although you wouldn’t guess it, this dog is very fast and can get loose if you’re not careful!

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10. French Bulldog

French Bulldog puppy in nature.

Frenchies are practically too cute for words. This very popular dog breed sheds about as much as its Bulldog brethren, which is some but not too much. Double-coated French Bulldogs shed moderately more twice per year.

The exercise needs of a Frenchie are about on par with other Bulldogs, except Frenchies are a bit more energetic. They too have breathing issues, but with training, they can excel at activities like rally and agility. That’s quite impressive!

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11. Chinese Crested

Chinese Crested Dog sitting on green grass outdoors looking sideways..

The Chinese Crested Dog is known primarily for being all but naked, but that’s not the only variety of this canine. Powderpuffs are covered in fur from head to toe. You’d never think this was a Chinese Crested!

The double-coated Powderpuff sheds seasonally while the Hairless Chinese Crested is a very minimal shedder. It only has so much hair to drop, after all.

Time in the yard and short walks are required for this breed, but you don’t have to pour more time into its exercise routine than that. If your Chinese Crested Dog is Hairless, please apply sunscreen before spending any time outdoors, even if it’s cloudy outside. The UV rays of the sun can still penetrate through the clouds!

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12. Irish Wolfhound

Portrait of an Irish Wolfhound in a summer nature park.

The brave, dignified Irish Wolfhound is a large dog that loses its propensity for exercise as it matures. Since your Wolfhound can become lazy if you let him, you’ll have to engage the dog with regular play and walks.

At least you won’t have to follow your Irish Wolfhound around the house with your vacuum cleaner. This moderately-shedding breed retains its fur due to the rough outer coat. Surprisingly, Irish Wolfhounds won’t shed seasonally even though they have dual coats.

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13. Bolognese Dog

White Bolognese Dog sitting in green grass and sniffing dandelion flowers in park.

Cute, cuddly, and almost endlessly fluffy, the Bolognese Dog from that part of Italy has a bright personality and a devotion to its family, making the dog a loyal, beloved companion. 

A very low-shedding breed with no seasonal shedding, the Bolognese Dog won’t leave your home white and furry. Its calm personality means it won’t go chasing after every squirrel or car on the road, so moderate outdoor exercise with the Bolognese Dog is truly a treat.

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14. Boston Terrier

Studio shot of an adorable Boston Terrier sitting on grey background.

The Boston Terrier does admittedly shed during seasonal shifts, but the amount of fur it drops is low. That’s due to the close-cropped, short coat this breed boasts.

The bright-eyed, big-hearted Boston Terrier will adjust its exercise requirements to your lifestyle. If you can dedicate a little more time to exercise, then this Terrier is ready to go. Yet if you can’t, that’s fine with this dog as well, so relax away!

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15. Tibetan Terrier

Tibetan Terrier dog lying in the grass.

The Tibetan Terrier is a dog that indeed hails from Tibet. Mid-sized, sweet, but sensitive, the Tibetan Terrier is unique for its long fur that covers its eyes and grows down like a moustache around its mouth. Its tail is also flowing.

Despite that it’s a double-coated breed, the Tibetan Terrier sheds moderately. Some dogs in this breed require more exercise than others, so ask your breeder before taking home a sweet Tibetan Terrier, but they are known to be quite adaptable.

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16. Glen of Imaal Terrier

Glen of Imaal Terrier on the green grass.

A spirited companion, the Glen of Imaal Terrier from Ireland is a mid-sized dog that sheds little. The outer layer of the Glen’s double coat is rough, which limits its shedding. You will see some seasonal shedding out of this dog though.

Many Terriers require lots of exercise, but not the Glen. Its short legs aren’t conducive to that sort of thing, so don’t push your dog into strenuous activities!

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Bottom Line

Low-shedding dogs are not exclusively small breeds, nor do they always have short fur. As the dogs featured in this article prove, a low-shedding breed comes in all shapes, sizes, and coat lengths.

Besides their preference for only moderate exercise, the great personalities of the 12 dogs I talked about today make any of them a fantastic companion!

Although these dogs don’t require vigorous exercise, you still must provide at least some physical activity for your dog every day.

That and a healthy diet will prevent your dog from gaining weight, which can lead to painful joint and bone issues that can reduce its quality of life.

16 Low-Shedding Dogs That Don’t Need Lots of Exercise

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