Get Rid Of Pet Hair In A Washing Machine
Washing pet blankets and rugs on a hot wash will help get rid of household germs and bacteria and get rid of dust mites . Add a liquid water softener like Calgon or half a cup of white vinegar to the washing cycle to help further loosen pet hair in the washing machine. At the end of the cycle, ensure you scoop any pet hair you can find out of the drum. Knowing how to clean a washing machine regularly will be an important job for your cleaning checklist our guide tells you how. And find more ways to clean with vinegar its another magical, natural cleaning product that can tackle grime and bacteria.
Don’t Forget Closets + Stairways
Finally, when thinking through your cleaning/odor tackling game plan at home, dont forget about spots in your house that your pets like to hang out that are less top of mind. My pup, for example, loves to take a snooze in my closet every once in a while. And some pets love to hang out on the stairs. Make sure you’re vacuuming and cleaning these areas regularly, as well, in order to really stay on top of unwanted odors.
Are There Tips For Choosing A Dog If You Have Allergies
Once youve narrowed your choices, your job still isnt done. Just because a breed matches your lifestyle and is considered hypoallergenic, it doesnt mean its the right one for you. Since every person is an individual, every allergic response will be different.
Where one person may have an allergic reaction to a Poodle, they may not be allergic to an American Hairless Terrier, cautions Dr. Klein. Only one-on-one contact experience will be the defining factor.
Therefore, its important to physically interact with your chosen breed before you acquire a puppy or an adult dog. Only by petting and being near a given breed can you determine how much you will react, if at all. In addition, you might have to try several different hypoallergenic dog breeds as you search for your match, as one breed may produce less of a reaction than another. Dr. Klein advises first narrowing down your choices, then having the allergic person spend time with a member of each breed on the list. He also suggests doing this at different times to see if there is any significant difference in the allergic response.
There may be one breed that stands out, according to Dr. Klein. Or possibly, none will make a difference.
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How Effective Are Allergy Shots For Dogs
Allergy shots are considered to be pretty effective and even in cases when they dont completely fix a dogs allergies, they can still help improve your dogs allergy symptoms.
It’s about 70 to 80 percent effective, but that’s along a spectrum, Dr. Harbour said. Some patients will completely improve, others will have less severe flares and we can potentially reduce their medications over time, and others it may be hard to notice actual improvement, but it may be simply preventing progression/worsening of disease over time.
So even if the allergy shots dont help your dog with his immediate allergies, its possible that immunotherapy can actually prevent his symptoms from getting worse in the long run.
Cover Surfaces With A Pet Blanket
If your dog or cat has a favourite sunny spot on your bed, sofa or carpet, protect it by covering it with a pet blanket or rug that can go in the washing machine once a week. Doing so wont just protect your flooring and furniture, itll help your vacuum cleaner live longer, too. And dont forget to wash pet beds regularly, too youll know its overdue if you can smell it . Pssst! We’ve reviewed the best pet beds, just in case your pet has been using the sofa/bed instead these might lure them.
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How Do Allergies Develop
Allergies are a result of your bodys attempt to keep your from contracting a deadly diseasethanks a lot, immune system.
When your body comes into contact with pet dander, for example, it should recognize it as a harmless foreign body and keep hunting for pathogens.
However, many peoples immune systems mistake pet dander as a threat and attack it the way it would attack the Polio virus.
Thats why suffering from allergies feels a lot like being sick. Your body is responding to the allergen the same way it responds to viral or bacterial infections.
Some scientists have suggested that allergies are a result of inactive immune systems, thanks to the overly-clean and sanitized environments that many of us live in.
In other words, your immune system gets bored as its got nothing to do, so it looks for something to attack. In this instance, pet dander just may be the closest candidate.
According to this theory, contracting a parasite might cure your allergies. But dont start eating dirt quite yet!
The good news is that there are actually quite a lot of ways you can relieve your pet allergies and still keep your pet.
Clean Clean And Clean Some More
Theres no way around cleaning to keep the allergen level tolerable. Whenever possible, enlist the help of a family member who does not suffer from pet allergies. Youll become a vacuuming whiz in no time and should also steam clean the carpet regularly. If its feasible, ditch the carpet altogether in favor of hard-surface flooring that does not trap allergens. Wash all bedding often . If your pet likes to lounge on upholstered furniture, cover the furniture and wash the covers often. Wipe down walls and smooth surfaces. Eliminate clutter that can hide allergens.
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What Kind Of Shots Are Given For Allergies
To treat allergic symptoms, many people get allergy shots. These are regular injections administered over time that help reduce symptoms and attacks. Tiny doses of a specific allergen are injected in the body to build up the bodys response to that allergen. Allergy shots are a type of immunotherapy treatment given to help individuals with seasonal allergies, stinging insect allergies, & indoor allergens
What Are The Worst Dog Breeds For Allergies
If you want a dog but have allergies, you need to avoid several breeds that are worse for allergy sufferers. Avoid basset hounds, dachshund, siberian husky, springer spaniel, boxer, akita, labrador, pomeranian, saint bernard, german shepherd, doberman, and boston terriers. Look instead for dogs with hair instead of fur to reduce but not eliminate allergens.
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What Is The Best Medicine For Pet Allergies
Antihistamines are the best medicine for pet allergies as they block the effects of the allergens that affect your immune system. You can buy a variety of over-the-counter medications or speak to your doctor for a stronger antihistamine. Nasal sprays are another option to reduce symptoms, as are decongestants. There are no good options for those with breathing problems from pet allergies.
How To Live With Pets Youre Allergic To
So what can you do to help yourself if youre living with pets youre allergic to? One way is to maintain certain physical boundaries, preventing those pets from going in certain parts of your home and keeping as much of their allergenic proteins away from you.
Ideally, you dont allow them into your bedroom and, especially, on to your bed, Dr. Hong says. This is, after all, where you sleep and allergic reactions would certainly play havoc with your ability to get good rest. Additionally, dogs and outdoor cats can bring in pollen from outdoors on their fur.
You should also keep them in areas of your home where the floors are hard surfaces, like linoleum or hardwood, so that its easier to clean up after them. The same goes for furniture, Dr. Hong adds, saying, Its better to have them in areas with furniture that you can wipe down as opposed to upholstery.
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You Pet May Not Be Causing Your Symptoms
Before you think about finding a pet a new home, it’s important to figure out if youor your childrenare in fact allergic. Though it seems as if pet allergies should be obvious, they are sometimes harder to recognize than you think.
If your eyes start to swell and you sneeze uncontrollably every time you are near a cat, then yes, you are probably allergic to cats. But some people with allergies or asthma who grow up around animals and are in contact with them every day may have more subtle symptoms. Instead of watery eyes and the other classic signs of pet allergies, they may experience chronic, low-level congestion, for instance.
A lot of times people will say, My dog or cat doesn’t bother me, but when somebody is exposed to a pet day in and day out, they don’t have the dramatic symptoms every time they see it, says Andy Nish, MD, an allergist at the Allergy & Asthma Care Center, in Gainesville, Ga. It may be a more subtle and chronic inflammatory process, and they may not realize that the pet is causing them problems.
The easiest way to pinpoint a pet allergy is to visit an allergist and get a series of skin tests, in which the skin is exposed to small samples of the proteins shed by cat, dog, and other allergy-triggering substances, such as pollen or dust. Allergists may also use a blood test known as a RAST as an alternative to or in addition to skin tests.
Why Do Pet Allergies Cause You To Sneeze Anyway
First of all, its important to understand what causes your allergy flare-ups. Dr. Hong says that its actually a protein in the saliva, urine and feces of these pets that were allergic to. It gets on their fur and skin, she adds, explaining how it spreads so easily.
As for why some pets may bother you more than others, its because certain proteins last longer than others. Cat protein can last up to four months in your home environment, Dr. Hong explains, while dog dander can linger for shorter periods of time.
That doesnt mean a dog wont make you sneeze and wheeze. One of the reasons is that all of these proteins can linger in your home. They get attached to couches, any sort of cloth surfaces like rugs and carpets and other upholstery and they stain and linger there, she says.
Dr. Hong says one other thing to be aware of is that theres no such thing as a truly hypoallergenic dog or cat. Even hairless cats arent 100% hypoallergenic. Even if they dont shed fur and spread dander everywhere, theyre still shedding the protein were allergic to.
Natural Cat Allergy Remedies
Use an indoor allergen neutralizer. Always choose a natural formula. Unlike toxic chemical sprays and shampoos, these herbal cat allergy remedies work without exposing you to dangerous substances. Easy Air Organic Allergy Relief Spray and Organic Allergy Relief Laundry Rinse are excellent examples of natural solutions. Both these liquid formulas instantly destroy cat allergens. Its like taking dangerous boulders and crumbling them into harmless rubble. They work instantly, and benefits last for weeks.
Neuter your cat. Non-neutered males produce the highest levels of this allergen. So fix your guy. And, by the way, a number of studies also show that spaying sharply lowers Fel d1 levels in female cats.
Shampoo your cat. The animal will still produce Fel d1, but bathing dramatically lowers the allergen level in your home. On average, a weekly bath by a neighborhood groomer will eliminate nearly half the allergen in your home or apartment.
Change the litter box frequently. Cat allergens come from your pets urine and solid waste, so place the litter box in your garage . And change the litter every other day.
Moisten your pets fur before daily grooming. The moisture will help deactivate allergens, and daily combing will definitely get rid of more.
Use a HEPA vacuum at least once a week and a HEPA air purifier daily. Together, they will eliminate a lot more cat allergens.
Aka How To Stop Allergies For Good
If your dog has allergies, it can feel like youre always buying her allergy medicine.
And sometimes, even pricey prescription medications can seem like theyre not helping much.
Thats why some pet parents choose to get allergy shots for their dogs . Its literally the only drug-free method that reduces pet allergies for good which means no more expensive prescriptions.
So, how does it work?
The Dodo reached out to Dr. Lydia Harbour, a veterinary dermatology resident at Dermatology for Animals in Arizona, to find out everything a pet parent of a dog with allergies should know about immunotherapy.
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Tips To Reduce Pet Allergies
Amy Shojai, CABC, is an animal behavior expert and award-winning writer with over 25 years of hands-on experience training and caring for cats and dogs. She has written 27 books on animal care, been named CWA Friskies Writer of the Year, and appeared on Animal Planet as a pet expert.
Lyuba Burakova / Stocksy United
Spring means allergy season is here, and allergies to pets can be a big problem for pet lovers. Hot weather games may be fun or may mean more time spent indoors avoiding sunburn for both people and pets. Its also the time of year for pollen, mold, and dust, so allergy sufferers double up the dose of misery. Even if you arent directly allergic to your cat or dog, they act like furry dust mops that trap and hold allergens that may set you off.
Run A Robot Vacuum Cleaner While Youre Out
Using a robot cleaner to remove pet hair while youre out wont take the place of a thorough vacuuming but it will keep pet hair under control between weekend cleaning blitzes. Our favourite robot vacuum for pet hair is the Dyson 360 Eye which wins top spot for suction power, vacuuming up pet hair with ease. It’s smaller than some models, so it can tackle tight spots, and it can even call for help when it gets stuck. You can view all the best robot vacuum cleaners in our buyers guide.
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Natural Allergy Relief Options
What helps relieve allergies fast? Watching what you eat, getting plenty of fresh air and drinking enough water are some of the natural remedies that can relieve allergies by improving functions of the immune system.
It may take several weeks for your symptoms to subside, but they are likely to be better kept under control when you tackle the root causes. Here are nine ways to get natural allergy relief.
1. Eat an Anti-Inflammatory, Alkaline Diet
First and foremost, start eating an anti-inflammatory diet to reduce your risk for allergies and many other health problems. Caring for your body with nutrient-dense foods gives your immune system the ability to repair itself, bringing it back into balance so it can fight off common allergies in your environment.
Here are some of the best foods and ingredients to incorporate into your diet to help you beat allergies:
Although its not abundant in many foods, vitamin D is also important for immune function and may help manage allergy symptoms. In fact, certain studies have shown that children who live farther from the equator are more likely to develop allergies and suffer higher rates of hospital admissions due to allergic reactions.
You can get enough vitamin D by spending about 15 minutes in the sun most days without sunscreen and by eating foods like whole milk and some mushrooms for natural allergy relief.
2. Local Raw Honey
3. Apple Cider Vinegar
5. Neti Pot
6. Stinging Nettle
Smooth Floors And Walls
Want to know a dirty little secret?
Carpets are the primary reservoir of allergens in a home!
To put it another way:
They can contain 13 times more cat allergens than smooth floors.
But if youre serious about reducing cat allergies:
Replace carpet for wood, tile or linoleum flooring. Especially try to get rid of wall-to-wall carpets as its almost impossible to clean them.
If you must have carpets
what can you do about it?
Pick out a type with a low pile.
Beyond that make sure you steam clean them regularly.
Or even better, use washable area rugs and clean them in hot water.
All in all:
Get rid of your carpets!
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How To Prevent Allergies In Cats
There is no way to prevent a cat from developing allergies but you can often help to limit its exposure to allergens. Keeping a clean home, using dust-free and unscented cat litter, not using excessive perfumes or deodorizers, not smoking in the house, using regular flea preventatives, and using metal or ceramic food and water dishes can help prevent your cat from having an allergic reaction. If you notice signs of allergies in your cat, it is best to consult with a veterinarian.
Causes Of Allergies In Cats
There are many things that cats can be allergic to and most are readily found in and around our homes. In some situations, this can make it difficult to eliminate the cause of a cat’s allergies.
- Pollens: Tree, dust, grass, weed, mold, and mildew pollens can all cause allergies in cats. These environmental allergens are difficult to control.
- Food: Food allergies are the third most common type of allergies in cats. There are many types of food that a cat can be allergic to but animal proteins such as chicken, beef, dairy, fish, and eggs are the most common culprits.
- Fleas: A common cause of allergy in cats, flea bites cause cats to have irritating allergic reactions including hair loss, redness, and itching. Even indoor only cats can have fleas.
- Medications: Cats can be allergic to flea medication, shampoos, and other medications.
- Cleaning products: Detergents, floor cleaners, and disinfecting sprays can all cause allergies in cats.
- Perfume: Strong perfumes and colognes can be irritating in their own right but some cats actually have allergies to them. Inhaled allergens are common causes of allergies in cats.
- Smoke: Just like other inhalants, some cats are allergic to cigarette and other types of smoke.
- Various surfaces: Fabrics, rubbers, and plastics are all types of surfaces that a cat can be allergic to. Some beds, food dishes, and floor mats may be problems for cats that have allergies to these specific surfaces.
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