Furry animals, especially cats and dogs, also carry dust and pollen on their fur. When an allergic reaction occurs when petting furry animals, you can either be allergic to dust or pollen, instead of having a pet allergy.
Pet allergens can collect in air, furniture, and other surfaces, as well as clothes. Allergens are also present in places where pets are neither found nor allowed. This happens since the clothes worn by pet owners carry the allergens everywhere.
Allergens produced by pets can stay suspended in the air and remain on surfaces for a very long time. So if you are planning to get a pet, but you are allergic at the same time, then you may want to consider a few things.
What Causes Pet Allergies?
A common misconception people have about pet allergies is that the allergens come from the pet’s fur. To burst that bubble, the allergens that cause these allergic reactions are pet dander. Pet fur only acts as carriers of the allergens rather than being the allergen itself.
What is pet dander? Simply put, pet dander is the microscopic flecks of skin shed by cats, dogs, birds and other animals. These trigger allergic reactions in some people.
Cat and dog allergens
Allergens produced by these house pets are found in:
- Saliva. When dogs and cats lick themselves, the allergen from the saliva transfers to their fur, which gives the idea that you might be allergic to your pet’s fur.
- Urine. Allergens can also be excreted through urine. More potent allergens are found in male cats than dogs and female cats.
The potency of the allergens differs from one pet to another. However, no matter the breed and how fluffy or hairless your dogs or cats are, these adorable pets can still cause allergies.