How Do You Get a Pet if You Have Allergies?

How Do You Get a Pet if You Have Allergies?

Having a pet can bring joy and companionship, but depending on the type of pet and your allergies, it can also bring a potential health hazard. If you suffer from allergies, it can feel like owning a pet is out of reach. However, there are ways to work around your allergies and still be a pet parent.

Understand Your Allergy Triggers

The first step to getting a pet with allergies is to sort out what exactly is triggering your allergy symptoms. Pet allergies vary from pet to pet, and learning what pet is best for you can be done by a trigger test.

Choose an Allergy Friendly Pet

Once you know what is triggering your allergies, you can begin to look for pet options. Some common pet allergies are caused by dander, saliva, and fur.

  • Dander: Dander-producing animals such as cats, dogs, and rabbits can cause allergies, but some allergies are triggered more by one type of pet than another. For example, some allergies are worse with cats. When shopping for pet options, look for breeds known to produce less dander, like the Schnauzer and Basenji, as well as breeds with less fur, like the Sphynx and the Devon Rex.
  • Saliva: This type of allergy is usually caused by the proteins present in pet saliva. Smaller animals like hamsters, guinea pigs, and gerbils can be a good choice, as are pet birds. Speak with your veterinarian to find out more about the saliva-producing animals that might be a better fit for your allergies.
  • Fur: Pet fur is responsible for many allergies, and even breeds with little to no fur can still cause a reaction. Reptiles and fish, however, are a good alternative for pet parents with fur allergies, as they do not shed and their fur is not a problem.

Follow An Allergen Prevention Plan

It’s not just about finding a pet that won’t be a direct trigger for your allergies – it’s important to also set up a pet allergen plan to help manage your allergies.

  • Keep your pet out of the bedroom, especially if it is a fur-producing pet, to lessen your exposure.
  • Vacuum and dust your home frequently to remove pet dander.
  • Wash pet bedding every week and keep pet items, like bowls and toys, off the floor and in your pet’s designated area.
  • Speak with your doctor to learn more about allergy medications and allergy prevention to help manage your allergy symptoms.


Having a pet can provide a great source of companionship and joy, especially in times of difficulty, and pet allergies should not be an obstacle to pet ownership. With the right pet, a good allergen prevention plan, and the appropriate medications, pet allergies can be managed and pet children, with allergies, can still have a furry, scaly, feathered, or chirping pet.

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