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Allergy Specialist Of Knoxville

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Pet Allergy Management

Pets provide companionship and fun, but for some people a dog or cat can also trigger sneezing, sniffles and worse. There is a common misconception that pet allergies are triggered by animal hair, but they are actually caused by a protein found in pet skin (or dander), saliva and urine. Some dog breeds are labeled “hypoallergenic”, as they shed less, but no dog is 100% hypoallergenic—even hairless dogs still have some allergen. If you’re allergic and want to get a dog or cat, consider looking for breeds with shorter hair and less shedding, although there isn’t real scientific evidence this will help.

Things you can do to reduce suffering from pet allergies:

• Make your bedroom a pet-free space, and wash bedding in hot water.
• Use a HEPA air purifier/filter to trap dander.
• Clean carpeting frequently, or opt for wood, tile or linoleum flooring.
• Keep your pet outside when possible.
• Speak with your vet about a balanced diet for your pet, which can prevent dry skin and excess shedding.
• Keep your pet off the furniture—cover upholstered chairs with towels and sheets and wash them on a regular basis.
• If your dog rides in the car, use covers on the seats and wash them frequently.
• Keeping pets out of the bedroom can help reduce allergy symptoms.

References: American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology. (2015). The truth about pet allergies. Retrieved from: https://www.aaaai.org/Aaaai/media/MediaLibrary/PDF%20Documents/Libraries/EL-allergies-pets-patient.pdf