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Pet owners with allergies helped by air purifiers

Allergy sufferers can coexist with pets. It just takes a little planning, and probably a high-quality air purifier such as the IQAir HealthPro at home.

Some research indicates dog ownership may actually reduce allergies.

Most pet allergies are due to the effects of pet dander, which is present with all animals that have fur (or feathers). As many as 30 percent of all people with allergies have allergic reactions to cats and dogs, according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America.

It’s not the actual hair of the animal that causes the allergies, it’s the proteins in the attached dead skin that causes the problems. The dead skin is called “dander.” The dander contains the proteins that are considered “allergens.”

A variety of pet allergy-control products can help neutralize pet allergens and reduce or eliminate pet dander in the air.

Air purifiers remove allergens and pet dander that make it into the air; A HEPA vacuum cleaner will also help control pet allergens and dander.

Some pets shed less than others. Recommended dogs breeds, according to the Australian Broadcasting Corp., include: poodles, schnauzers, bichon frise, Chinese crested dogs and others. The miniature poodle is considered a great choice because it has wool rather than fur.

Recommended cat breeds include the totally hairless Sphynx and short-haired cats.

Studies indicate dog ownership may actually help people avoid allergies.

A study published last year in the Journal of Pediatrics reported that children with eczema benefit from living with a dog during infancy. Cat ownership, however, seemed to have a negative effect on children with cat allergies. The study was conducted at the University of Cincinnati.

Source: IQAir