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Animal Allergies can occur with almost any furry pet. Most animals responsible for allergies are mammals, and include cats, dogs, mice, horses, hamster, guinea pigs, rabbits and rats. The latter is a problem for many biological laboratory workers.  Saliva, skin and urine are the source of animal allergens, which accumulate on the fur because of self-grooming.

The easiest solution for control of animal allergies is to remove the animal from the home. Unfortunately, precious few people are willing to part with the family pet. Other alternatives include keeping the pets out of the bedroom. Removing the carpeting in the bedroom is helpful because it is a trap for  animal dander and allergens. An air purifier in the bedroom is also recommended because the allergy-causing substances produced by animals remain suspended in the air for long periods of time. Bathing the animal frequently has also proven effective. It is not known precisely how frequently you should do this, but every two weeks is suggested.

When these measures do not provide relief, allergen immunotherapy can markedly decrease your sensitivity to your furry friends. There is no specific breed of dog or cat that can be recommended for allergic individuals as there is great individual variation in the amount of allergen each animals produces. A common misconception is that some animals have hair, not fur. They are basically the same thing. Controversy exist  as to whether growing up in a home with an animal prevents the development of allergic sensitivity to pets. Until clarified, it is best not to have an animal in the home if you have other environmental allergies or a strong family history of allergies because it has been repeatedly shown that exposure precedes sensitization