Dog lovers are many, but some might fear that dog allergies could get in the way. You might have considered getting a hypoallergenic dog to avoid the sneezing, but is this really a foolproof solution? Before getting a new pet, here’s what you need to know about hypoallergenic dogs and dog allergies.
What’s the Short Answer?
According to the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology, almost 10 million dog owners are allergic to their pets. Moreover, all pets have allergens of some form, found in their dander, saliva, and urine. It is their proteins to which people can become allergic. The short answer is no; there is no such thing as a truly hypoallergenic dog.
What Are Hypoallergenic Dogs?
This begs the question, “What are hypoallergenic dogs?” A dog labeled as such is less likely to shed and would be better named non-shedding dogs. The difference is that non-shedding breeds need active grooming to avoid matting and disease. Unfortunately, a lack of shedding does not mean someone will be less allergic.
How Pet Allergies Work
One can either suffer from allergens, irritants, or neither. Dog shedding can cause irritation to some people through sneezing, watering, itchy eyes, and congestion. Irritation is not the same as an allergy, so getting a dog that sheds less could be the solution.
An allergy develops when the body mistakenly identifies a protein as a threat. The body then develops antibodies against it and these trigger histamines to fight the invading protein. Thus you have sneezing, rashes, itchy eyes, etc.
Are You Allergic?
How do you know you are allergic? You could get an allergy test, which will tell you exactly which proteins are causing an allergy. Even if you are allergic to dogs, though, it might be that simple. Indeed, it might be only some dogs you are allergic to. Evidence seems to suggest that a third of people with dog allergies react to the male prostate gland, which means they can have female dogs or neutered males. People are mainly allergic to only the proteins Can f 1-6.
Living with Pet Allergies
Is it impossible to get a dog if you have allergies? No! One could limit one’s exposure to allergens by limiting your dog’s access to the bedroom or your contact with your dog. Antihistamine and other medication are also available. Even better, you could try immunotherapy, which is a more permanent solution. It’s even available to dogs!
Trust the Care of Your Pet to the Professionals at Everhart Veterinary Medicine!
At Everhart Veterinary Medicine, our veterinary professionals strive to provide your pet with the very best of veterinary care. We believe that the best care for your pet should be provided by experienced, compassionate, and knowledgeable veterinary professionals. With two Maryland locations in both Baltimore and Pasadena, we are always ready to welcome your pet as a new patient! Give us a call today at 410-355-3131 or 410-793-7670! For more information, as well as updates on veterinary news and topics, visit us on Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn!