Pet allergies usually aren’t due to fur, but to invisible skin flakes, called animal dander, or to pet saliva. Minimize your runny nose and red eyes with these tips.
- Step 1: Have your pet professionally groomed every six to ten weeks. Most groomers have high-velocity hair dryers, which can reduce shedding by removing any loose hair.
- Step 2: Wash your hands often and always after touching your pet. This way you’re less likely to place dander directly in your face.
- FACT: Pet dander is present in saliva. Depending on your level of sensitivity, letting your pet kiss you may or may not cause a reaction.
- TIP: Wear gloves when you groom your pet to prevent contact with dander.
- Step 3: Bathe your pet with a dander-suppressing shampoo once a week. There are specific formulas that not only remove and neutralize dander, but condition skin against flaking.
- Step 4: Regularly vacuum carpets and upholstered furniture. This will get rid of dander, as well as unsightly pet hair.
- TIP: When choosing a vacuum, buy one that has a HEPA filter, to help remove microscopic allergens.
- Step 5: Purchase an air filter or room purifiers for your home. Portable units with HEPA filters can remove 99% of allergenic particles — including pet dander — from the air.
- Step 6: Keep your pet outside, or set aside a special room either for yourself or for your pet. No matter how much you love your dog, cat or even hamster, you’ll need a pet-free refuge.