It will seem horribly unfair to any child who suffers with
allergies that they can not have a pet or must loose one what they
have grown attached to. Is there a way to deal with pet allergies
which may less or even eliminate the suffering for adults and
children with allergies?
WHAT ARE YOU ALLERGIC TO?
By establishing whether the animal is actually the cause of an
allergy is certainly the best starting point. However, that can
be a difficult task if you already have an animal since the
allergens are extremely difficult to remove entirely.
If an existing pet can be removed and the home thoroughly cleaned
(carpets, walls, furniture etc.) you MAY be able to verify the
allergy in several months. Obviously that is not the easiest
Having the child stay with a friend or relative for a week (as
long as there are no pets in the home) may show an improvement
that may indicate an allergy to the family pet.
A visit to the doctor can confirm an allergy with a simple test.
The tests vary, but some can be mild uncomfortable and would
probably not considered if the allergy symptoms were mild.
Some allergy symptoms are compounded by exposure to several
allergens. By identifying other sources and removing them you may
find the reaction to pets is lessened and not a barrier to
enjoying their presence.
CREATING AN ALLERGY FRIENDLY HOME
There are several steps you can take to reduce the build up of
allergens and bring relief to allergy sufferers.
The first recommendation is to have hardwood or other smooth
surface for your flooring. Carpets hold far more of the particles
that cause allergies and hard flooring makes it easy to clean.
Leather furniture is also ideal for homes with pet allergies. For
the same reason as hard flooring is more suitable than carpet,
leather holds far less allergens than fabric.
Keep a seat for the allergy sufferer that pets are not allowed to
sit on. Also be certain that animals do not sleep on the beds or
enter the bedrooms of allergy sufferers. Consider keeping the
sleeping area of the home as a pet-free zone.
MAKING YOUR PET AS HYPO-ALLERGENIC AS POSSIBLE
There are even things you can do with your pet to reduce the
allergic effects of having them in your home.
Frequent grooming and bathing with a mild soap to prevent over
drying will reduce the dander that is one of the main causes of
pet allergies. It would be recommended that someone without
allergies take on this task.
Washing hands after playing with a pet and avoiding touching your
face with unwashed hands will also help. Since some individuals
are also allergic to the saliva of pets it would be sensible to
not allow your pet to lick you.
In the case of more serious allergies or asthma it may be best
that no pet share the home. For older children or adults it may
be possible to find a medication or treatment which makes the
situation tolerable if they prefer to keep the pet despite the
The information contained in this article is for educational purposes
only and is not intended to medically diagnose, treat or cure any
disease. Consult a health care practitioner before beginning any
health care program.