Having a pet is great.
Over the years, there have been studies proving that pets can greatly impact our health in a good way https://www.mnn.com/family/pets/stories/11-studies-that-prove-pets-are-good-your-health.
Dogs are used nowadays for psychiatric reasons http://time.com/4728315/science-says-pet-good-for-mental-health/.
But on the flip side, pet allergies can become a problem in some cases.
Our beloved dogs and cats can shed, and their fur can be an allergen for many people https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4755411/.
The good news, however, is that there are many home remedies for pet allergies that can help you.
Table of Contents
What are pet allergies?
Having a pet is a great opportunity to connect with a companion and care for another life.
This is why there hundreds of millions of cats and dogs all around the world.
It seems that having an animal is an universally appealing way to live.
But pets are also a major source of allergens.
Their urine, dead skin cells, dander, dust, pollen, and saliva can all be considered allergens for people.
When you have a domestic animal, it is hard to keep an allergen-free home.
And while there are hypoallergenic pets, there is no such thing as 100% allergen-free.
The range of pet allergies can go from minor irritation to potentially dangerous and even life-threatening allergic reactions https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/04/170406143845.htm.
There are many prescription medications that can help.
But because of the side effects of such medications, a lot of people turn to home remedies for pet allergies to take care of the problem.
Some of the allergic reactions you can experience include respiratory distress, sneezing, watery eyes, itchiness, and rash.
Causes and symptoms of pet allergies
Contrary to the popular belief, the fur is not always the cause of a pet allergy.
One of the misconceptions regarding pets is that long-haired pets are more likely to cause an allergic reaction than a short haired pet.
That is simply not true.
Your pet’s fur is not the biggest problem https://acaai.org/allergies/types/pet-allergy.
There are more concerning causes like dog or cat dander.
That is the real cause of pet allergies Dander is comprised of tiny particles of dead flaked skin, and also urine and saliva.
All pets give off a certain amount of dander, regardless of fur length and breed.
People who have pet allergies, or other allergies, have an overly sensitive immune system.
Their bodies are prone to overreacting when they come to substances that are otherwise harmless.
Our immune system responds by attacking the allergen in the same way it attacks viruses and bacteria.
Here is the full list of symptoms of pet allergies:
- Watery eyes
- Runny nose
- Swelling under the eyes
- Itchy skin
- Difficulty breathing
As you can see, the symptoms of pet allergies are very similar to other allergies.
And they also cause symptoms due to inflammation of the nasal passages.
Difference between dog and cat allergies
According to statistics, about 10% of the world population has some type of a pet allergy.
However, you are twice as likely to be allergic to a cat as to a dog.
One in seven children is allergic to cats.
The explanation lies in the shape of feline protein molecules.
Cat allergens are smaller than dog allergens, but they are able to remain airborne for a longer period of time.
Experts say that the size of the cat allergen particle is perfect to breathe into your lungs.
The allergic cat protein is known as Fel d 1, and it is extremely sticky and easily attaches to clothing, skin, and upholstery.
Can you prevent pet allergies?
When you have a pet at home, it is almost impossible to clear all of the allergens.
But there are some things you can do to improve the safety of your home.
Before we take a look at the home remedies for pet allergies, let’s talk a little about prevention.
- Clean the floors, curtains, and furniture as thoroughly as you can
- Consider replacing your carpet with tiling to make dusting and cleaning easier
- Reduce clutter from areas that dander may cling to
- Filter your air
- Do not allow pets into the family bedrooms
Home remedies that work
Now that we know almost everything there is for pet allergies, it is time to get to the main topic, and that is home remedies for pet allergies.
While you might hear and read a lot more remedies, these are the ones that work.
You can say that a filter is not exactly a home remedy.
But it is the best, safest, and the most efficient way to prevent allergic reactions.
Clear the air of your home, and you will be in a much better shape to battle pet allergens.
Omega-3 fatty acids
You will be surprised to know how much your diet affects whether you get a pet allergy or not.
Adding omega-3 fatty acids helps because of their anti-inflammatory properties https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1323893014000100.
The more anti-inflammatory substances you have in the body, the more you reduce immune sensitivity and promote overall health.
Some omega-3 rich foods include fatty fish, nuts, seeds, and eggs.
A natural antihistamine, quercetine comes in a natural form https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27187333.
It is a powerful flavonoid you can source from foods like apples, onions, olive oil, and grapes.
Quercetin will strengthen your body’s immune sensitivity in the same way as omega-3 fatty acids.
Think of it as a natural form of Benadryl.
Just a slight change in your diet will help you get enough of it.
Another home remedy known for its antihistamine properties, nettle inhibits the production of histamine in the body.
If you didn’t know, histamine is what causes allergic reactions in the first place.
You can consume stinging nettle in tea and tinctures for a natural way https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19140159.
Or, if you like, you can always buy some supplement.
Butterbur is a popular European herb that can easily and quickly reduce allergic symptoms.
Butterbur works in the same way as stinging nettle, which is inhibiting the histamine in the body.
This is one of the most popular home remedies for pet allergies.
Flushing your nasal cavity with saline water can quickly eliminate irritants in your mucus membranes.
Wash out the allergens with the use of a Neti pot.
These pots also have soothing effect on the membrane.
Essential oils are known for their antibacterial and antimicrobial properties.
But they also have antihistamine properties, making them safe and easy to use home remedies for pet allergies https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4808543/.
The best oils to use for this purpose include lemon, peppermint, and lavender.
Others can provide good relief as well.
The best way to use essential oils for pet allergies is with a diffuser or inhaling directly from a steam inhaler.
One way to reduce and prevent pet allergies is by improving your overall immune system.
Allergic reactions are nothing more than an overreaction of the immune system https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5534455/.
Beneficial gut bacteria, or probiotics, have been linked to reducing of allergic responses.
Probiotics boost the health of your gut bacteria, and you can easily consume more by including yogurt, kefir, and fermented foods in your diet.
Apple cider vinegar
A staple in home remedies, apple cider vinegar can help with almost every skin and digestive problem.
In terms of pet allergies, ACV helps by reducing the build-up of mucus and cleaning your lymphatic system.
Drink it with water and honey in the morning, afternoon, and evening to reduce symptoms of pet allergies.
Hypoallergenic dog breeds
As mentioned previously, there are a lot of hypoallergenic dogs and cats.
Let’s start with some dog breeds that do not cause allergic reactions.
Remember, these are not 100% safe, but nothing in life is.
Even condoms do not offer 100% prevention from pregnancy.
With that in mind, these breeds will make life easier for those living with allergies.
- Bichon Frise
- Yorkshire Terrier
- Portuguese water dog
- Soft coated wheaten terrier
- Chinese crested
- Giant Schnauzer
- Kerry Blue terrier
- Shih Tzu
- Brussels Griffon
- West Highland White Terrier
- Scottish terrier
- Irish Water spaniel
- Border Terrier
Hypoallergenic Cat Breeds
We mentioned previously that cats cause much more allergic reactions than dogs.
But same as with dogs, there are hypoallergenic breeds that are easier to handle.
- Russian blue
- Cornish Rex
- Devon Rex
- Oriental shorthair
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