Of the millions of people across the country, approximately fifteen percent are allergic to animals, namely dogs and cats. Even so, many of these people with allergies chose to get a dog or cat, replace one after it died or keep the pet they already had although advised by their physician to give the animal up. Many people feel that allergies to their pets are a minor inconvenience compared to the joy and companionship of owning one. If you are considering getting a dog, but suffer from a pet allergy, become as knowledgeable about allergies as possible and learn about practical ways to manage your allergies so you can experience of pleasure of having a dog.
Contrary to popular belief, the fur on a dog does not cause an allergic reaction but the proteins and other substances shed with the dander do usually cause the problem. When a dog licks its fur, the proteins in the dogs saliva sticks to his fur. Dander is the microscopic scales or particles of hair and skin shed by the dog, which cause an allergic reaction. Contact with allergens often cause a person to have problems such as, a runny nose, hives, congestion, sneezing, itchy swelling eyes, itchy skin, trigger an asthma attack or cause other problems. Dog allergy symptoms or severity varies in each individual and range from very mild to severe reactions. Dog allergy sufferers often react differently to different dog breeds and even different dogs of the same breed. In other words, you could experience allergy symptoms to one miniature poodle but not to another miniature poodle.
There is no such thing as a non-allergenic breed of dog, but there are some, which seem to cause fewer allergies than others do. Smaller dogs seem to cause fewer problems for allergy sufferers because, volume wise, they have less fur than large breeds so miniature and toy varieties are very popular. The bigger the dog, the more fur they shed. Many breeds of dog produce considerable less dander than others do.
Although there is no such thing as a non-shedding dog, several breeds shed an extremely small or minimal amount and produce less dander. Some of the breeds include:
Standard, miniature, and toy poodles
Kerry blue terriers
Miniature poodles shed a minimal amount and produce very little dander, so are an excellent choice for allergy sufferers. This playful, loving, extremely intelligent breed makes a wonderful pet. Miniature poodles do require regular haircuts and grooming. Some suggestions that help reduce dander and other allergens include using a Hepa filter on your vacuum and furnace. Vacuum often and use allergy-control detergent to wash your furniture covers and pets bedding. Have certain areas that are off limit to your miniature poodle such as the bedroom. Have someone groom or clip your pet that is not allergic to dogs and, after playing with your pet, wash your hands. You and your miniature poodle can now spend many wonderful, allergy-free years together.