Tips for People Who Have a Pet Allergy but Still Want a Pet
There are many different types of allergies that people can suffer from and many of them mean that a person has to change their lifestyle and way that they do things. The severity of the allergy will vary from person to person and may depend on what their specific allergen is but most people find that avoidance becomes a big part of their life. However, it is not all doom and gloom as there is one allergy that can actually be relatively easy to deal with and that is a pet allergy.
A pet allergy is normally caused by the dander that an animal sheds, which then gets onto the skin causing redness and itching and into the respiratory tract often causing symptoms that are similar to asthma. Many people who suffer from an allergy to cats for example, will find that their symptoms are much milder when they come into contact with their own pet than they will be if they come into contact with someone else’s cat. Because this allergy is often much less severe than other types, it is possible to have a pet allergy and still have a pet.
The first thing that you will need to do is prepare your home. Make sure that the room the person with the allergy sleeps in is off limits to the household pets. Purchase a duvet and pillows that are filled with allergy resistant materials to ensure that the dander is not transferred to the bedding from others that enter the room. Also washing the duvet cover and sheets on a regular basis on a hot setting is the best way to ensure the removal of any dander that has been transferred to it.
It is recommended that you have wooden or laminate flooring in the areas that the pet will be allowed to roam as this is easier to clean and does not hold the dander that the pet sheds. If you have carpets in the house then you should have them steam cleaned at least 3 times a year to prevent dander build-up. Using a throw over on the main chair that the animal sits in is also a good idea as this can be removed as needed. However, leather sofas and armchairs are the best option as they can be easily wiped down.
In terms of the animal, you should try and groom them or have them groomed on a regular basis outdoors. This will ensure that you have minimal shedding of hair and dander inside the home. If your animal needs to use a litter tray, then purchase dust free litter that is not deodorized and you should have less problems when it comes to emptying it. Also a good tip is to try and get a female cat as they have less skin secretions than males and so do not affect allergy sufferers as much.
So as you can see from above it is possible to have a pet allergy and still keep a pet, but it does take a bit of organisation and forethought. If you suffer from a pet allergy you might benefit from attending one of the allergy groups that are regularly held at animal shelters to help you adjust a little before bringing a pet into your home.
Iren Parusheva have great knowledge about allergies (allergi is the term in Danish) from her previous jobs abd she is more than happy to share it.