10% of Americans are allergic to the dander brought in by household pets. Dander can have unfortunate effects on a pet owner’s health, but there are a few ways you can minimize its impact.
Pet dander refers to the dead skin that tends to fall from cats, dogs, and other warm-blooded furry or feathery animals. The tiny proteins in dander and saliva are the root cause of pet allergies.
They’re naturally introduced into the air at microscopic levels, where they’re circulated until they’re breathed in — whether an animal is actually in the house or not.
When your home is dusty or has low-quality air, whatever allergy symptoms you might already experience from being around dogs are sure to get even worse.
Symptoms Associated with Pet Dander
Those with pet allergies are categorized as having either low or high sensitivity. For those with low sensitivity, symptoms may not appear until a few days after coming into contact with the allergen. High sensitivity people, on the other hand, may feel the impact of dander within 15 minutes of contact.
Symptoms of allergies include swelling, itching of the membranes that line the eyes and nose, inflamed eyes, and respiratory problems. Once dander has entered the lungs, antibodies combine with the allergens, causing intense coughing or wheezing. Highly sensitive people may also experience rashes on the face, neck, and upper chest.
If you’re experiencing all these things at home, the worst symptom of all is being unable to feel comfortable in your own living space.
How to Deal with Pet Dander
The first step for many who suffer from pet allergies is the removal of animals in the house. Different animals can affect people to varying degrees, with twice as many people suffering from allergies to cats rather than dogs, according to Live Science.
But it can also be difficult to part ways with your furry, dandery friends. As long as you’re low-sensitivity, there are other methods you can use to limit the impact of pet dander in your day-to-day life:
- Pet-Free Zones: By keeping pets out, you can reduce the levels of dander in any room of the house. The bedroom might be an especially good place for a zone like this -- nobody wants to wake up with allergy symptoms.
- Frequent Pet Baths: If you do own a pet and you can’t bear to part ways, a weekly bath can reduce the amount of dander in their fur.
- Replacing Furnishings: Dander is attracted to fabric, so by replacing carpets with linoleum or cloth drapes with blinds, you can reduce the amount of allergens sticking to the furnishings.
- HEPA air filters: HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air) filters reduce the amount of dander being circulated through the air and trap allergens at 99.97% efficiency down to 0.3 microns.
Of all these methods, air filters can be the most effective at stopping dander from spreading. By treating the air quality itself, you can greatly reduce dander levels at a consistent rate. Air filters are even more useful for those without pets, as they provide a quick and painless clean-up of the air in any given place.
Rabbit Air purifiers are an environmentally friendly way to eliminate allergens from the air. Pet owners in particular are in luck, as the Rabbit Air MinusA2 can be outfitted with a filter specially designed to trap pet allergens, called the Pet Allergy Customized filter.
And Rabbit Air offers excellent, 24-hour customer service and free shipping throughout most of the U.S., so take a look today and reduce the impact pet dander is having on your health.