Should you be a cat lover, but suffer from cat allergies, you may be thinking that getting a cat may not be a great idea. Fortunately, there exist certain cat breeds that may trigger no, or very little, allergic reactions! These breeds are known as “hypoallergenic cats.”
Don’t forget though, that “hypoallergenic” does not mean “non-allergenic.” There has never been a cat that would be completely allergy-free! But I’m a cat lover, and, because I suffer from cat allergies, I decided to share my knowledge related to hypoallergenic cats…
What causes allergies to cats?
The main cause of cat allergies is the Fel d 1 Protein and dander. The Fel d 1 protein is largely produced in cat’s saliva and sebaceous glands. The dander is a term for the shed skin that comes off of the cat in the form of small flakes.
Not only dander can irritate your skin, but can also attack your immune system. This results in the triggering of allergy symptoms and allergic reactions — watery eyes, breathing difficulties, cough, hives, sneezing, or wheezing.
Cats constantly groom themselves which involves rubbing their saliva in the fur. While doing that, they spread the cat allergens around. There is nothing you can’t do about it as the self-cleaning is their natural instinct.
Get tested for allergies before choosing your cat breed
People’s allergic reactions can vary with different breeds. Whereas one person may be allergic to Russian Blue, he may not be allergic to Balinese. There are two methods I recommend…
1. Get tested by an allergy specialist.
2. Visit a cattery or a cat breeder to check for potential allergy problems.
Hypoallergenic cat breeds
While every single cat in the world produces the dander, some cat breeds produce it much less than others. There are 14 low-allergen cat breeds with the described hypoallergenic trait…
3. Russian Blue
11. Oriental and Colorpoint Shorthair
Hypoallergenic cats are great for the people who suffer from cat allergies. Should you be one of them and cat lover at the same time, you may consider getting this low-dander cat breed in order to relieve symptoms of cat allergies.
What are YOUR experiences with hypoallergenic cats? Any more advice for future cat owners with allergies?