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Dog and Cat Allergies
by David the Dogman
David Klein FDTCB. F.inst D. Canine Behaviourist


There is no breed of dog not even a Poodle or Chihuahua that will not trigger sneezes, rashes or asthmatic reactions. Allergic reactions can vary from dog to dog or cat to cat according to Jonathan Corren Clinical Professor of medicine and Director of the Allergy Research Foundation at the University of California.

It is the Dander and top skin and certain proteins in saliva and urine that cause people allergic problems according to Emily Rothstein a resident in dermatology at Cornhill College of Veterinary Medicine. Any dog or cat that urinates or licks has the potential to be an allergic-type breed.

Most research on pet allergies has centered on allergies to cats, maybe this is no surprise because they are twice as likely to make their owners sneeze as dogs. Longer haired cats tend to shed less allergen and consequently owners with allergies have fewer reactions. Cats that are short haired traditionally give off more allergen, it is not known if this is true for dogs.


Research has shown that if a cat or dog is washed about once a week the airborne allergens are cut drastically. It is recommended that dogs should be kept outdoors at night. Dogs and cats that live indoors should not spend any time in the allergic person's bedroom and never allowed on beds.

Dander collects in the carpets. upholstered furniture and bedding so for those suffering allergies it is better to be without carpets and have wooden furniture or leather. Bedding should be encased in plastic and if it is impossible to remove carpets then these should be steamed cleaned every three months to remove allergens. It is also advisable to wash walls and floors.

Animal allergens are very small and very sticky and once they are secreted they dry on the animals fur, become stuck on fur and become airborne during petting and grooming. According to Bonnie Eiche a spokeswoman for the Asthma and Allergy Foundation "They are so small that they can stay airborne for a long time and because they are sticky, they adhere to walls, clothing, and heating and cooling ducts."

About 7 years ago I gave up smoking and noticed that I was coughing and choking when handling dogs. After a few tests I was duly informed " Mr. Dogman you are an asthmatic and allergic to dogs" "No not me......not possible thats my job" but sadly I now have to take all kind of things to help control my allergic symptoms from medication to inhalers and most important I wash my hands more than a surgeon and change my clothes about three times a day and wash my dogs every week.

But with all my allergies I could not live without dogs because I feel that dogs enhance our quality of life and are worth having around.

Commitment, Firmness, but kindness

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Copyright © 1997 by David Klein. Do you have any problems with your pet? Then why not send your problem to DAVID THE DOGMAN. David is a Canine Behaviourist who works and lives in Marbella, Spain. Tel/Fax (00345) 2883388. His web site is located at: David has his own radio and TV shows, and writes for many newspapers and magazines. David has been working with dogs for many years and started his career in Israel, working on the Border Police. He has been involved in all forms of training, including air sea rescue, air scent work, and has trained dogs for finding drugs. David has devoted the past 10 years to studying behaviour and the very passive approach. He does not use choke chains, check chains, or any form of aggression.

David The Dogman is available for private consultations in your home, for further details telephone; Tel; (95) 2883388

Editor's Note: This article is not intended to serve as medical advice. If you suspect that you have pet allergies contact a physician.