If you love cats but are allergic to them, you don't have to write off owning a cat forever. If you take the right precautions, you can protect yourself from the elements of your cat that you are allergic to while also enjoying the company of your very own cat. Here are five precautions you can take.
#1 Understand Your Actual Allergy
The first thing you have to do is understand that most individuals who are diagnosed as being allergic to cats are actually allergic to the proteins that are secreted from a cat's skin and saliva. These proteins are released into the environment when your cat sheds hair, when they lick something, or when dry flakes fall off of their skin.
It is key that you protect yourself from your cat's hair, skin flakes, and saliva in order to manage your allergies.
#2 Get A Cat With Less Fur
The second thing you need to do, if you don't have a cat already, is to make sure that the cat you get will not shed a ton of hair and flakes of skin all over your home. If you don't have a cat yet, try to purchase a short haired breed of cat or a hairless breed of cat. This will not eliminate your allergens; however, some short-haired and hairless cats shed less hair and skin which trigger your allergies. You may also want to consider purchasing a known hypoallergenic breed of cat.
#3 Restrict The Rooms Your Cat Has Access To
Once you get your cat, you need to restrict the room to which your cat has access. You should not allow your cat into your bedroom where you sleep.
It is also easier to clean up after your cat and negate the effect they have on you if you keep them out of rooms in your home that have carpet in them. Try to restrict your cat to the rooms in your house with hardwood floors. You may also want to train your cat to stay off of all upholstered furniture in those rooms.
#4 Stay On Top Of Cleaning
If you really want to have a cat, even though you are allergic to them, you need to really stay on top of cleaning in order to reduce the dander and saliva to which you are exposed.
You need to sweep or vacuum the rooms that your cat is allowed into everyday. You need to vacuum any furniture that your cat could get on. You need to dust or wipe down all the surfaces in the room where your cat has access on a daily basis.
#5 Keep Your Cat Clean
Finally, in order to protect yourself from the elements that you react to, you need to keep your cat clean. Sit down and brush your cat on a daily basis, so that hair and dander is not falling out all over your home. Make sure that you wear gloves and put on a mask while you groom your cat.
If you follow the five precautions above, you should be able to have a cat and keep your allergies under control at the same time. For more information, consider contacting a professional like those at a veterinary hospital in your area.