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Long-Haired Dogs: 19 Top Breeds and What to Know About Them

Profile photo of Heather Venkat, DVM, MPH.By Heather Venkat, DVM, MPH, DACVPM


Meet a long-haired dog breed and you’ve met one dashing canine!

On long-haired breeds, you’ll find short hair and straight hair and corded hair and wavy hair.

You’ll meet Sheepdogs and Working dogs and Terrier dogs and favorite Hounds.

No doubt some will be big while others are small.

There are playful types and reserved puppy pals.

Their coats will be different. Their personalities will not be the same.

In fact, the single thing all long-haired dogs have in common is exactly that: long hair.

Beyond their ability to grow long hair, the gamut runs wide in what you may encounter.

Every breed has a coat specific to its needs.

For example, spitz breeds and mountain dogs carry double coats to both provide warmth and protection in harsh weather.

Herding dogs sport long bangs to protect their eyes from the sun while spending their days tending sheep on the hillside.

Then there are single-coated dogs who shed the very least and are sometimes even considered hypoallergenic.

So whether you prefer thick and dense, silky and fine, or the easy-to-recognize corded look, you can be sure there’s a canine with long hair to meet your needs.

Let’s look at the top 19 long-haired dog breeds, coupled with how to care for them, frequently asked questions about long-haired dogs, and of course where you can find your very own long-haired pal.

Welcome!

Let’s get started.

Long-Haired Dog Care

Grooming for long-haired dogs runs from low maintenance to high maintenance and everywhere in between.

A few long-haired dogs require brushing only two to three times each week with an occasional bath to keep their coat shiny and clean.

These breeds include the Polish Lowland Sheepdog and Collie.

Other breeds, on the other hand, require lots of attention.

Care for many long-haired pals includes frequent baths, daily brushing, and regular grooming from a professional groomer.

And the breeds with corded hair? They’ll take the most care!

Whichever breed you choose, the goal for every long-haired pooch is a healthy coat with no tangles.

Now let’s go ahead and meet some favorite long-haired breeds.

Long-Haired Dog Breeds

19 Top Long-Haired Dog Breeds

1. Afghan Hound

Group: Hound

Coat Type: Long, fine, thick

Maintenance: High

Height: 25-27 inches tall at the shoulder

Weight: 50-60 pounds

Color: Any combination

Lifespan: 12-14 Years

A dignified elegance is to be expected from today’s much loved Afghan Hound.

She’s been around for centuries and is among the oldest of all dog breeds.

Her coat provides the perfect protection to keep her warm and healthy throughout the Afghan mountains, where she first originated.

Thanks to her long, flowing, and silky coat, the Afghan Hound is easy to recognize and hard to forget.

A fun note on the Afghan Hound is the fact that she’s a sighthound, meaning she hunts with eyesight and speed, rather than following her nose.

In the grooming department, Afghan Hounds require regular baths with both shampoo and conditioner.

Plus, they require hours of weekly brushing to keep their coat clean and free from mats and tangles.

2. American Cocker Spaniel

Group: Sporting

Coat Type: Silky, flat, slight wave

Maintenance: Medium

Height: 13.5 – 15.5 inches tall at the shoulder

Weight: 24 – 28 pounds

Color: Black, tri-color, tan, silver, brown, red, white, buff

Lifespan: 12 – 15 Years

Oh hey! It’s the Cocker Spaniel.

Sure, he may be the smallest of all sporting group dogs.

Yet behind his silky coat, he carries a soft expression and is athletic, playful, and amiable all-in-one.

He loves to please, so training needn’t be stressful.

The build of an American Cocker Spaniel is typically compact and sturdy.

While silky to the touch, his coat is flat with a slight wave throughout.

His coat shouldn’t be super long as too much coat will hinder him in the field.

When it comes to grooming, unless your American Cocker Spaniel is clipped short, take time to comb your pal two to three times per week.

In addition, your little Spaniel should get a professional clipping each month.

3. Bearded Collie

Group: Herding

Coat Type: Long, shaggy, straight, coarse

Maintenance: High

Height: 20 – 22 inches at the shoulder

Weight: 45 – 55 pounds

Color: Black, blue, brown, fawn

Lifespan: 12 – 14 Years

True to his name, the Bearded Collie flaunts a handsome little beard.

Plus, his coat is long and shaggy, and his energy level runs high.

He’s athletic and originated first as a sheepherder and cattle drover in ancient Scotland.

The coat of a Bearded Collie has two layers.

First is the outercoat. It’s straight, harsh, and shaggy.

The undercoat, in contrast, is soft and furry.

And while this breed sheds very little, they require lots of grooming including a daily brushing and combing plus an occasional bath.

4. Bolognese

Group: not registered with AKC

Coat Type: Long, cotton-like

Maintenance: Depends on coat length

Height: 10 – 12 inches at the shoulder

Weight: 5.5 – 9 pounds

Color: White

Lifespan: 12 – 14 years

Appearing cloud-like, the Bolognese’s signature look includes a fluffy, long white coat that puffs all around and sheds very little.

In personality, the Bolognese is calm, sweet, and faithful.

She’s named after her place of origin: Bologna, Italy.

Her size renders her the perfect lapdog, and she nearly went extinct during the 20th century.

Thanks to several breed enthusiasts, she’s been preserved and lives on!

Within the grooming department, her white, cottony coat will need a daily brushing if you choose to let her hair grow long.

Shorter clips on the Bolognese are common and easier to maintain.

5. Briard

Group: Herding

Coat Type: Long, wavy

Maintenance: Moderate

Height: 22-27 inches tall at the shoulder

Weight: 55 – 100 pounds

Color: Black, white, gray, blue, tawny, or a combination of these

Lifespan: 10 – 12 years

Muscular in build and spirited by nature, the Briard is a smart pal coming from the Brie region of France.

His first purpose was to herd sheep and guard the flock.

Today, the Briard is deeply loyal and quick to love on friends.

To offer him sufficient protection and warmth, he carries a double coat.

The outer coat is hard, dry, and flat with wavy locks.

Beneath this and closer to the skin is his undercoat, comprised of fine hairs placed tight against his body.

Thanks to all this hair, the Briard will need to be brushed at least three times each week.

A pin brush is great to remove mats and tangles, while an undercoat rake will do the job of removing loose undercoat hairs.

6. Collie

Group: Herding

Coat Type: Rough, straight, with a double coat

Maintenance: Moderate

Height: 20 -24 inches tall at the shoulder

Weight: 31 – 44 pounds

Color: White, blue merle, tri-color, sable and white, sable, sable merle

Lifespan: 10 – 14 years

There are two types of Collies: longhaired and shorthaired.

Today we’re talking about the longhaired Collie.

These Collies carry a double-layer coat that needs regular brushing two to three times each week in order to stay tangle-free.

The longhaired Collie is also shinier than other shorthaired Collies and naturally keeps itself clean.

So while a Collie does shed, he has very little doggy odor.

7. Coton de Tulear

Group: Non-sporting

Coat Type: Dense, long

Maintenance: High, unless the coat is cut short

Height: 9 – 11 inches tall at the shoulder

Weight: 8 – 15 pounds

Color: Pure white

Lifespan: 15 – 19 years

Meet the royal dog of Madagascar: the Coton de Tulear, pronounced KO-tone Dih TOO-lay-ARE. 

This breed has won the nobility’s affection and is a perfect personification of her name.

Her hair is pure white, with a cotton-like texture.

Hence the “Cotton” at the front of her name.

“Tulear” is likely where the breed began.

It’s a port town in the African island nation of Madagascar.

So yes, the Coton de Tulear is a canine pal from Tulear with a cotton-like coat.

Whatever the case, the Coton de Tulear is charming, friendly, and a lovely companion.

Her coat is supple and dense, meaning she’ll need to be brushed every day unless you choose to keep her hair cut short.

8. Dachshund

Group: Hound

Coat Type: Varies

Maintenance: Medium

Height: 8 – 9 inches tall at the shoulder

Weight: 16 – 32 pounds

Color: A variety including black, black and tan, chocolate and tan, blue and tan, cream, red

Lifespan: 12 – 16 years

Energetic, bold, and curious accurately sums up the much-loved Dachshund.

This breed carries a pleasant expression and comes in three coat varieties: smooth, long, and wiry.

The coat of a smooth-coated Dachshund is short and shiny.

The long-coated Dachshund is sometimes wavy.

And the Dachshunds with wiry coats? Their fur is tight, thick, and hard with a fine undercoat.

Looking at the long-coated Dachshunds specifically, these pals love to explore and dig.

They require only moderate exercise, meaning they can make a home in both a city apartment or in the rolling countryside.

When socialized properly, the Dachshund is excellent with children and reserved toward strangers.

The long-haired variety is typically quieter and less terrier-like than the other Dachshund varieties.

When it comes to grooming, the long-haired Dachshund needs a regular brushing once or twice each week, interspersed with an occasional bath.

9. Havanese

Group: Toy

Coat Type: Anywhere from silky straight to wavy with ringlets

Maintenance: Depends on coat length

Height: 8.5 – 11.5 inches tall at the shoulder

Weight: 7 – 13 pounds

Color: Black, silver, white, cream, tan, fawn, gold, sable, red

Lifespan: 14 – 16 years

A native of Cuba and named after the Island’s capital city Havana, the Havanese is a smart little pal who loves to socialize.

Her coat is luxurious, silky to the touch, and anywhere from wavy to straight in appearance.

The Havanese is a popular family pet and is quick to love on anyone considered friend.

While the Havanese sheds very little, her level of maintenance depends largely on how long her coat is.

Should you keep her hair short, she’ll need less brushing.

If you let her hair grow long, she’ll need to be brushed every single day.

And then there’s always the option of letting her hair cord.

Although be informed: developing cords on a Havanese can take as long as two years and requires even more maintenance than long hair.

As the owner, you’ll need to form sections of hair to cord, plus check for mats, clean the cords, and lots more.

Speak to a professional groomer before you try growing cords on your Havanese pal.

10. Lhasa Apso

Group: Non-sporting

Coat Type: Long, dense, double coat

Maintenance: Medium

Height: 10 – 11 inches tall at the shoulder

Weight: 12 – 18 pounds

Color: A variety, although the most common are black, white, gold, gray, cream, or a combination of these

Lifespan: 12 – 15 years

Considered an ancient breed, the Lhasa Apso first originated in the Himalayan mountains of Tibet.

His purpose was to serve as an interior watchdog.

Monasteries and palaces were his places of abode.

As such, he was consistently the first to set off an alarm when strangers approached.

True to his roots, he was named after the Tibetan city of Lhasa, with “apso” meaning a longhaired dog.

Across the country, he was deeply prized by dignitaries.

The coat on a Lhasa Apso is heavy and straight.

He carries a double coat but sheds very little.

Unless you choose a shorter haircut, expect to brush and trim your Lhasa Apso regularly.

11. Pekingese

Group: Toy

Coat Type: Long, thick, double coat

Maintenance: High, unless cut short

Height: Up to 14 inches tall at the shoulder

Weight: 6 – 9 pounds

Color: Often gold, red, or sable. Sometimes you’ll find black and tan, white, cream, sables, and gray

Lifespan: 12 – 14 years

Affectionately dubbed the Peke, today’s Pekingese has the face of a lion; her face is literally surrounded by luxurious fur creating a mane-like appearance.

She carries a double coat that is thick and long in appearance.

So yes, she requires lots of care between frequent brushing and regular baths.

Unless of course, you choose to keep her hair cut short.

Shorter clips are easier to care for, despite needing to be cut more frequently.

During the summer months especially, shorter clips are perfect for keeping your Pekingese cool and happy.

The Pekingese is considered an ancient dog breed and was originally treasured by Chinese royalty.

Today, she’s a favorite lapdog who loves to make people laugh.

12. Shih Tzu

Group: Toy

Coat Type: Long, double coat

Maintenance: High, unless cut short

Height: 8 – 11 inches tall at the shoulder

Weight: 9 – 16 pounds

Color: A variety, although the most common are black, white, blue, gold, liver, or a combination of these

Lifespan: 10 – 16 years

Pronounced “sheed-zoo”, the Shih Tzu is Chinese for “lion”.

Thanks to his pushed-in face combined with a flowing coat, he really does resemble a mini lion.

The Shih Tzu is an ancient breed that has enjoyed popularity with royalty throughout the centuries.

He is affectionate, lively, and outgoing by nature.

Bring him home to the family and you’ll all be smiling!

In the grooming department, a Shih Tzu’s coat can actually reach the ground if left uncut.

So yes, you’ll want to schedule regular appointments with a professional groomer to keep the hair from getting too long.

In addition, you’ll want to brush, comb, and bath your little pal frequently.

Shorter clips require less care, although every Shih Tzu does need regular brushing to keep his coat looking its best.

13. Tibetan Terrier

Group: Non-sporting

Coat Type: Fine, with a slight wave

Maintenance: Medium

Height: 14 – 17 inches tall at the shoulder

Weight: 18 – 30 pounds

Color: A variety of single or mixed patterns

Lifespan: 14 – 16 years

Considered the holy dog of Tibet, today’s Tibetan Terrier is actually not Terrier at all.

Rather, the western world used the term by mistake and it’s stuck to this day.

Regardless, the Tibetan Terrier first served as watchdog and companion in Buddhist monasteries throughout the Himalayan mountains of Tibet.

Their build is compact and square, making them excellent mountain dogs.

When it comes to grooming, the Tibetan Terrier has two coats.

The outer coat is fine with a slight wave, while the undercoat is soft and wooly.

As a result, expect to brush your Tibetan Terrier two to three times each week to keep the mats and tangles at bay.

And of course, should you choose a shorter clip for your Tibetan Terrier, grooming will be even easier.

14. Komondor

Group: Working

Coat Type: Long, corded

Maintenance: Medium

Height: 15.5 – 27.5 inches tall at the shoulder

Weight: 80 – 100 pounds

Color: White

Lifespan: 10 – 12 years

A Komondor’s coat will have either cords, flocks, or mats.

Yet whatever the texture, the color is always the same: a simple, pure white.

In fact, it’s their beautiful white coat that helps them blend with the herds and wintery landscape in Hungary where they first originated.

As a puppy, a Komondor’s coat is soft and wavy.

As she ages, her coat slowly morphs into a double coat with the outercoat becoming more coarse over time.

This coarse outercoat then traps the softer undercoat to form cords.

And yes, it’s that signature corded coat that offers both protection from predators attacking a flock as well as warmth in harsh weather.

15. Puli

Group: Herding

Coat Type: Short, glossy, corded

Maintenance: High (if maintaining a corded appearance)

Height: 16 – 17 inches tall at the shoulder

Weight: 23 – 35 pounds

Color: black, rusty black, gray, white, solid colors only

Lifespan: 10 – 15 years

A close cousin to the Komondor, the Puli is another Hungarian breed that first originated as a herding dog.

She rarely sheds and is donned in rope-like cords thinner than that of a Komondor.

Cords for a Puli form naturally over time as a result of the outer and inner coats getting intertwined.

Fascinating enough, the Puli is often paired with the Komondor when guarding.

The Komondor will take night watch, while the Puli thrives during daylight hours.

In the grooming department, cords are no piece of cake.

While they do offer warmth and protection, they require lots of maintenance to prevent painful matting.

Not to mention, if left untrimmed, the cords can easily reach the ground meaning regular haircuts are a must.

If you ever choose to shave the hair off and go cordless, with time, the cords can grow back.

16. Yorkshire Terrier

Group: Toy

Coat Type: Long, straight, silky

Maintenance: High

Height: 8 – 9 inches tall at the shoulder

Weight: 5 – 7 pounds

Color: A variety of color combinations including black and gold, black and tan, blue and gold, blue and tan

Lifespan: 13 – 16 years

Affectionately dubbed as Yorkie, the Yorkshire Terrier carries a single coat of fine, silky, long hair.

Her hair is similar to human hair and never stops growing.

Like human hair, her coat needs lots of grooming but sheds very little.

(Think a few strands of hair around your home versus balls of fur.)

As puppies, Yorkies begin with darker markings and thicker coat textures.

As they mature, their hair thins and lightens until they reach two years old.

17. Polish Lowland Sheepdog

Group: Herding

Coat Type: Thick, long, shaggy

Maintenance: Low to moderate

Height: 17 – 20 inches tall at the shoulder

Weight: 20 – 50 pounds

Color: Beige, black, black and white, brown, chocolate and white, gray, gray and white, tricolor, white

Lifespan: 12 – 14 years

Oh hey! It’s the Shaggy Sheepdog!

Flaunting a thick, double coat, the Polish Lowland Sheepdog loves to guard and make people smile.

Her coat is double, with the topcoat being extra long while the undercoat is soft and dense.

Her tail is typically short or docked, and she walks on oval feet with arched toes.

Thanks to her soft undercoat, she sheds extra heavy twice each year.

When grooming, you can expect to brush your Sheepdog once each week.

(When she’s shedding extra heavy, you may wish to brush two to three times per week to keep more hair on your brush and less floating throughout your home!)

 18. Maltese

Group: Toy

Coat Type: Long, silky, single-layer

Maintenance: Moderate

Height: 8 – 10 inches tall at the shoulder

Weight: 4 – 7 pounds

Color: White

Lifespan: 12 – 15 years

If you like top knots on puppies, meet the much-loved Maltese pal!

Her single-layer coat is extremely versatile when it comes to grooming.

You can let it grow long until it touches the ground, you can crop it short, you can leave in long on the head and tail, and so much more.

Amidst the many haircut variations, a short coat is most popular because it is significantly lower maintenance.

When the coat is short, you can expect a slight wave or curl in the texture.

However, as the hair grows longer, its weight causes the strands to straighten.

19. Shetland Sheepdog

Group: Herding

Coat Type: Straight, harsh, with a dense undercoat

Maintenance: Medium

Height: 13 – 16 inches tall at the shoulder

Weight: 15 – 25 pounds

Color: Black, sable, blue merle, with white markings

Lifespan: 12 – 14 years

Meet the Sheltie, a small herding dog who has the coat and looks of his larger Collie cousin.

The Shetland Sheepdog is a Scottish breed with a long, rough double coat.

Believe it or not, it can take up to five years for a Sheltie’s coat to reach full length.

While still a puppy, the Sheltie resembles a little lion with a large mane and short body hair.

However, by the time he reaches five years old, he’ll have a short, soft, and dense undercoat with a topcoat reaching six inches long.

Shelties do shed a lot (especially twice each year) so plan to brush your pal often to keep shedding under control.

What to Consider When Buying a Long-Haired Dog

  • What are the grooming needs for your specific breed? Is the coat coarse or smooth? Will it need to be cut often? How often will you need to brush your fur pal?
  • How often will your pal need to be bathed? Does your specific breed of dog require a particular shampoo and conditioner?
  • Will you be able to groom your puppy at home, or will you need a professional groomer? If using a professional groomer, does your budget allow for adequate visits?
  • How will you tweak your current routine to have time for grooming a new puppy? In your family, whose responsibility will it be to brush, bathe, and trim your puppy’s fur? Will it be a team effort?
  • Do you have the right supplies for your specific dog breed? What kind of brush will you be using? Do you need multiple brushes (a smoothing brush, a brush with light bristles, a brush to reach the bottom of the coat, etc)?

Long-Haired Dog FAQ

Q. Can someone who is allergic to dogs own a long-haired dog breed?

Yes! Some long-haired dog breeds are actually hypoallergenic. The dander from a pet’s coat is what causes an allergic reaction, which is not related to the length of a dog’s hair.

Q. How can I make sure my long-haired dog’s coat stays healthy?

In addition to proper coat care, ensure they are eating high-quality dog food, rich in Omega-3 and -6 fatty acids. Combined, this will encourage shiny fur and healthy skin.

Q. What should I watch out for in my long-haired dog?

It can be easy to miss skin lumps and bumps, fleas and ticks, and other skin issues in a long-haired dog. Make sure you check their coat thoroughly on a regular basis and take them to the vet for frequent check-ups. Also, it can be hard to know if your long-haired dog is just very fluffy or if he is overweight, so watch out that he is not eating too much or too little so he maintains a healthy weight.

Q. How can I prepare my long-haired puppy to be professionally groomed?

Get your puppy used to having her ears, face, paws, tail, and body touched. Make sure she is comfortable standing on a high table. From a distance, turn on hair clippers or a blow dryer and reward your puppy with lots of treats so she is not worried when she hears those sounds at the groomer.

Now it’s time to come on over and meet these newest puppies for sale!

Until next time,

Heather
Dr. Heather Venkat's Signature

 

 

References:

Brown, J. (2020). 17 Top dog breeds sporting longhaired locks. Retrieved from https://www.thesprucepets.com/longhaired-dog-breeds-5076026.

Dachshund (n.d.). Petfinder. Retrieved from https://www.petfinder.com/dog-breeds/dachshund/.

Everything You Need to Know (n.d.). Lucky dawg pet services. Retrieved from https://luckydawgsalongrooming.com/everything-need-know-managing-long-haired-dog/.

Long-Haired Dogs (n.d.). Petfinder. Retrieved from https://www.petfinder.com/dog-breeds/collections/long-haired-dog-breeds/.

Profile photo of the author Heather Venkat, DVM, MPH.Dr. Heather Venkat has been a veterinarian since 2013, working in companion animal medicine with dogs and cats, as well as veterinary public health. Her passion is in prevention, One Health, and strengthening the human-animal bond. A bonafide animal-lover, she competes in dog sports and currently shares her home with a border collie mix named Luna, three cats, and two leopard geckos.

 

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