Choosing a Pet When You Have Allergies

There’s a reason that dogs are considered man’s best friend. One look at those adorable eyes or a quick snuggle and it’s hard to resist. Cats can be pretty cute too. But no matter how much you love those furry animals, your allergies may not. But that doesn’t necessarily have to banish you to a pet-free life forever. Here are a few considerations when determining if adopting a pet is a possibility for you:

  • Opt for a dog with less fur or less shedding

There aren’t truly hypoallergenic dogs, but there are some that may cause less of a reaction due to the fact that they have less hair or shed less than other breeds. It’s not necessarily their fur that is the issue, but rather the dander that attaches to their fur and spreads into the air and around your home. Consider breeds such as the bichon frise, giant or miniature schnauzer, Irish water spaniel, Maltese, poodle, Portuguese water dog, shih tzu, or Yorkshire terrier. Regular grooming can help keep fur and allergens under control as well.

  • Get tested

Many people assume that they are allergic to pets, but it may actually be the pollen and dander they bring inside on their fur or something else associated with the animal. Have allergy testing done to identify exactly what you may be allergic to if you’re looking to adopt a dog, cat, or other furry friend.

  • Spend time around different animals

Not every breed will elicit the same reaction. If you’re serious about wanting to adopt a pet, spend some time with different types in a shelter or consider short term fostering to see how you do. There may be some animals you find more tolerable than others. While one makes your eyes itchy and your nose runny, another one might leave you feeling okay. Do your research and be willing to try out some options.

  • Pick a smaller pet

While a big dog might be your first choice, you may have to make some compromises. Perhaps a smaller dog, or even a hamster or gerbil may be a good start. Based on size alone, they’ll shed less and create less dander.

  • Go the hairless route

If fur and dander are really an issue, consider a hairless option. There are some hairless dogs and cats available, or you could go with a fish or reptile. Figure out what fits best with your interests, lifestyle, and allergies.

If you do choose to adopt a pet and have allergies, make regular cleaning a top priority. Invest in a HEPA air filter and make sure you’re vacuuming and dusting fairly frequently so that allergens don’t have too much time to accumulate. Consider keeping one or two rooms “pet-free zones” where the animal is not allowed. Need a break or some pet-free time to clean? Sign your dog up for doggie daycare! They’ll be able to get their energy out and socialize with other animals without leaving a trail of fur and dander around your house. Contact Lake Wylie Pet Resort today to learn more!

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