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12 Dog Breeds That Don’t Smell Bad (With Pictures)

Written by: Codee Chessher

Last Updated on May 31, 2024 by Dogster Team

Cute purebred Chihuahua puppy resting on green meadow

12 Dog Breeds That Don’t Smell Bad (With Pictures)

Any dog owner knows that you can never completely get rid of that distinctive canine odor, but certain breeds are definitely less smelly than others. If you don’t want that musty, wet dog smell everywhere or simply prefer a low-maintenance pooch, you’re not alone. Let’s wade into some of the best dog breeds to consider when you want to minimize that notorious dog smell as much as possible.


The 12 Dog Breeds That Don’t Smell Bad

1. Irish Water Spaniel

Irish Water Spaniel standing on grass
Image By: Julie Morrish, Shutterstock
Weight: 55–65 pounds
Lifespan: 10–12 years

Irish Water Spaniels are one of those breeds advertised as hypoallergenic even though they’re not 100% hypoallergenic (no dog is). Still, they come close, and their dense, curly coat barely ever sheds. As the name implies, they were bred for the water, and even today, their coats barely smell even when sopping wet.

2. Maltese

maltese dog on the grass
Image By: Piqsels
Weight: 4–6 pounds
Lifespan: 12–15 years

The Maltese is a sprightly, sweet little dog that does wonderfully with children of all ages and most other household pets. They need regular grooming to stay clean and odor-free but aren’t typically smelly dogs at all. Even after frolicking outside, you likely won’t notice any offensive dog smell if you give your Maltese regular baths.

3. Portuguese Water Dog

Portuguese Water Dog in beautiful green park
Image By: Eve Photography, Shutterstock
Weight: 35–60 pounds
Lifespan: 12–14 years

Nicknamed PWDs or Porties, the Portuguese Water Dog was bred to stay as clean as possible even when spending a ton of time in the water. They even have webbed feet perfectly suited for waterfowl hunting. Their coats don’t shed a lot, but you’ll still want to use a de-shedding comb regularly to keep it as clean and odor-free as possible.

4. Poodle

Brown poodle dog on rock
Image By: Anna_Bondarenko, Shutterstock
Weight: 40–70 pounds
Lifespan: 12–15 years

The stately Poodle is well-known as one of the top breeds that don’t have much of that infamous doggy stink, and they’re relatively low-shedding, too. However, the downside of Poodles is that they take a lot of personal or professional grooming for their coats to stay in tidy, presentable shape.

5. Basenji

basenji dog on the grass
Image By: Aleksandr Tarlõkov, Pixabay
Weight: 22–24 pounds
Lifespan: 10–12 years

The rare Basenji hails from Africa, where it became famous as the “Barkless Dog”. The Basenji’s voice is more like a yodel because of its elongated larynx. Curiously enough, they’re also notable for cleaning themselves like cats do, which helps minimize dog smell. Sadly, these dogs are very rare in the US.

6. Chihuahua

chihuahua sitting on the grass
Image By: Herbert, Pixabay
Weight: 2–6 pounds
Lifespan: 12–16 years

Though their coat can range from smooth to long, all Chihuahuas have low odor and aren’t too heavy on shedding either. Long-haired Chihuahuas should be brushed every week or two to help de-shed them, and they also shed more during spring and fall shedding seasons.

7. Yorkshire Terrier

standard yorkshire terrier standing on grass
Image By: Imageman, Shutterstock
Weight: 3–7 pounds
Lifespan: 13–15 years

Yorkies have silky fur that sheds very lightly throughout the year, and you’ll want to keep their coat cut short if you want to stop bad smells before they can develop. Yorkies are clean and barely have a dog smell at all as long as they’re given regular baths, and their hair doesn’t have time to develop excessive oils or bacteria.

8. Bichon Frise

bichon frise on thee grass
Image By: Ieva Tvaronavicute, Shutterstock
Weight: 7–12 pounds
Lifespan: 12–16 years

Bichon Frises are great for people with allergies because they’re very nearly hypoallergenic, generating very little hair and dander compared to other breeds. They do require regular brushing, but nothing you can’t do at home with a brush every week or two. Baths are also key to preventing doggy smells from accumulating over time.

9. Labradoodle

old silver labradoodle dog in the field
Image By: SteveEBell-images, Shutterstock
Weight: 50–90 pounds
Lifespan: 12–14 years

Famously referred to as hypoallergenic (but no dog is truly hypoallergenic), Labradoodles are low shedders like their Poodle family members but with a luscious straight coat that’s either kept short in a “puppy cut” or long in a “retriever cut.” The puppy cut is easier to keep up with and keeps hair to a minimum, which, in turn, mitigates bad odors from brewing.

10. Kerry Blue Terrier

Image By: Radomir Rezny, Shutterstock
Weight: 30–40 pounds
Lifespan: 12–15 years

Kerry Blue Terriers are famous for their dense curly blue-gray coats and mustaches, which are relatively low odor and light on shedding compared to the other curly-haired breeds out there. However, they do need regular upkeep and baths, especially around the mustache, since it can harbor food and bacteria if not cleaned after meals.

11. Dachshund

A man holds a dachshund's paw outdoors in a park in summer
Image By: Leka Sergeeva, Shutterstock
Weight: 11–32 pounds
Lifespan: 12–16 years

The faithful short-haired Dachshund is famous for their tubular shape and waddling walk, but their short wiry fur coat is one of the easiest to manage in the dog world. They’re moderate shedders, but most of that fur is throughout the year in light spurts. All you really need is a good de-shedding comb and some high-quality dog shampoo to keep their coat clean, though it resists dirt fairly well.

12. Schnauzer

dog trail park black miniature schnauzer harness
Image By: Anna in Sweden, Shutterstocks
Weight: 11–90 pounds
Lifespan: 12–16 years

From the diminutive miniature Schnauzer to the giant ones, this breed is very clean-cut and has modest grooming needs that will keep smelly dander and fur off your furniture. However, some Schnauzers have very oily fur that can call for special dog shampoo or topical meds to keep them clean and smell-free.


Final Thoughts

Not all dogs are smelly by nature but keeping them bathed and brushed will work wonders to further mitigate problematic musty dog smells. For a low-odor and low-shedding dog, you could do a lot worse than some of the breeds listed above.

Featured Image Credit: Rafael Guajardo, Pexels

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