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3 Tips for Making Sure Your Pet Doesn't Make Things Worse

Medically Reviewed by Jabeen Begum, MD on November 15, 2021

Allergies can cause eczema. One of the most common allergies eczema can be generated by is allergies to pets and pet hair. Typically, these allergies are genetic. However, it can also be caused by chance in your genes that decrease the amount of a specific protein in your skin.

It can be challenging to diagnose airborne allergies, especially as they relate to eczema flare-ups. Usually, the first step in diagnosing an inhalant allergy is to examine your history of having allergy signs like itching, sneezing, wheezing, or coughing, along with eczema signs. Then, try to notice what might link them all together. 

You can also get a regular allergy blood test. Typically there are fewer false positives when doing these types of tests for inhalant allergies. However, there are cases in which making skin contact with pets will cause your eczema to flare up. In this case, your skin will become irritated in the places that the animal touches you.

If you have a pet and find out that you are allergic to them, the best way to stop experiencing symptoms is to try and rehouse them. This is especially true if you are allergic to their airborne dander. If you can’t do that, you should think about: 

  • Keep the animal limited to certain areas of your house 
  • Clean your house often 
  • Run a HEPA filter
  • If you have been around pets, change your clothing immediately

Many sources claim that certain breeds of pets are hypoallergenic. While this is false, and no pet is 100% hypoallergenic, some species of animal can generally be more accessible for people with allergies to be around. 

Some of the dogs that are best for people with allergies are:

  • Afghan Hound
  • American Hairless Terrier
  • Bedlington Terrier
  • Bichon Frise 
  • Chinese Crested 
  • Giant Schnauzer
  • Maltese
  • Poodle
  • Portuguese Water Dog 
  • Standard Schnauzer

Some of the dogs that aggravate allergies the most are:

  • Basset Hound 
  • Boston Terrier 
  • Bulldog
  • Doberman Pinscher
  • Pug

Cat allergies are different than dog allergies. However, cats with shorter hair often are better for people who have allergies. Some tips for living with a cat if you are allergic to them are:

  • Wet mop your floors every week.
  • Simplify your home decor, so there are fewer places for the dander and hair to build up in. 
  • Clean your air condition for a week. 
  • Get rid of the carpets in your home. 
  • Be sure to wash your blinds regularly.
  • Invest in a humidifier.
  • Get an air purifier.
  • Bathe your cats regularly. 
  • Brush your cat multiple times a week. 
  • Feed your cats flaxseed oil in their food every day. 
  • Make sure your cats eat a nutritious diet. 

Show Sources

SOURCES:

Brooklyn Animal Action: “Dealing with Cat Allergies.”

Cleveland Clinic: “Eczema,” “Are Any Dog Breeds Hypoallergenic?”

National Eczema Association: “Eczema, Atopic Dermatitis and Allergies: What Is The Connection?”

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