Ask anyone on the street and the answer will mostly be “yes” for having at least a pet at home. Known as the nation of pet owners and pet lovers, Australia, at the same time, has the dubious crown as the world’s allergy capital. As much as we Australians love our pets, the rising pet allergy rate cannot be unseen!
Hay fever, asthma and hives are the few common symptoms of pet allergies. Yet, half of the pet allergy sufferers do not get immediate symptoms. Even if they realise the situation, some rather live with sneezing, itching and wheezing than give up their beloved pets. Clearly, pets have become an important part of our lives that we can’t just give up on.
Though many have suggested specific breeds or species to be adopted by pet allergy sufferers, we say a home with good indoor air quality is equally crucial. Since pet allergy occurs when the immune system has an allergic reaction to the protein found in dander, saliva and urine of pets or other animals, a home with clean air ducts is necessary to ensure efficient and effective operation in sucking out dust and potent allergens from indoor air.
Dog’s Saliva, Fur and Dead Skin Particles Can Cause Pet Allergies
Though dogs top the list for most pet allergies in Australia, not all dog breeds should take the blame. Prior to bringing a dog into your home, you ought to research the grooming habits of different dog breeds and get one that is touted as hypoallergenic.
For instance, German Shepherd’s dry skin causes excessive pet dander while Saint Bernards and Bulldogs are known for excessive saliva. Depending on your level of sensitivity, these can trigger anything from red and itchy eyes, hives, sneezing, congestion, nasal inflammation to asthma. Not forgetting the air quality at your home as build-up dust exacerbates the problem.
Cat Allergen Is Spread Through Licking
Cats love licking and this accelerates the spread of cat allergens, which mainly come from the sebaceous glands in their skin. The saliva glues the allergens to dander, dust particles, furniture, textiles and anything at home. In fact, what worsens the situation is that cat allergen can linger in the home for about 6 months and in cat’s bedding for about 4 years.
How About Hamsters and Rabbits? Their Bedding.
Pocket pets or more specifically, rodents (such as hamsters, gerbils, mice, guinea pigs and rabbits), are less common but are equally high maintenance. Though their activities are limited to the cage, the idea of bringing them in as a “starter pet” should be reconsidered. Allergens that are supposed to stay close to their cage can spread in your home via their food and bedding, causing you or your family member irritation.
Birds Are Not Escaped! Pay Attention To Their Feather.
Birds have no fur but their feather dander can also trigger allergic reactions and asthma attacks. Feather dander is released into the air when birds clean their feathers, play or wash. With that, you can have an allergic reaction that leads to lung inflammation by inhaling dust particles produced by birds. Not to mention, bird urine and droppings can provoke allergy and mould growth in the cage too.
Fish Should Be Alright Then? It Will Be A Yes and A No.
Technically, fish live in water and we are not in contact with them directly, hence lower chance of being affected by a pet allergy. However, there is something you need to be careful of. Always place your tank in a well-ventilated open space.
We can’t say that enough. There’s no point in curing an allergy by undergoing treatment if your air ducts at home are not sanitised regularly. These indoor allergens will only pile up in the air ducts as you ignore their existence. Thus, it would be a good idea to give your entire duct system a good bath with antimicrobial biannually, in addition to replacing air filters.
In the end, it is extremely unhealthy to breathe in mites, dried faeces, dust, dander or any other potent allergens all year long even for a non-pet allergy sufferer. Get a free quotation now with DUCTMATES or schedule an appointment at 1300 238 287. Meanwhile, do feel free to visit our website for more information.