Pets without hair are seen as the best choice for those who struggle with allergies. There is a lot of truth in this, but it must be emphasized that the hair is not the only allergenic factor. However, this does not alter the fact that people who want to have a pet, and who cannot keep a typical “fur” in the house, are advised to have pets without hair. Which animals do not cause allergies? Which species are worth paying attention to? Below we describe the most interesting of them.
There is a common belief that allergy sufferers should not have pets. However, it is important to know that not all pets are a source of allergens and not every allergen poses a threat to a person prone to allergies. The concept of “animal allergy” creates a lot of unnecessary confusion, because the four-legged friend itself is not an allergenic factor. An allergic reaction is caused by proteins in the epidermis of the animal and its secretions – in saliva, sebum and urine, from which they get on the fur† It should be noted that the symptoms of allergy can be caused by contact with any animal, not just a dog or a cat. For example, cases of allergy to livestock are not uncommon (this is especially true for horses). With this in mind, it’s easy to conclude that hairless pets are the safest choice for allergy sufferers.
Reptiles, especially lizards, are often the first choice for allergy sufferers. The bearded dragon is a particularly recommended species. It’s a pretty safe choice, but keep in mind that as reptiles grow, they shed the outermost layer of the epidermis, so allergy symptoms can never be ruled out. In addition, their food, especially some insects, can be a sensitizing factor. Still, agama is considered one of the safest choices.
Like all cold-blooded animals, agams live in a specific environment that must be recreated at home. This species does not require temporary terrariums, so you can get the target tank right away. The minimum size of the terrarium is 120x60x60 cm. Smaller tanks will not provide enough space for the lizard, which will result in lethargy of the bred individual. In addition, it is necessary to obtain a significant temperature spread. The warmest place should be between 38 and 40 degrees Celsius and the coolest – 25 degrees Celsius.
- Fun fact – agama can slightly change skin color for communication purposes.
A turtle can also be a good choice for allergy sufferers. The most popular variety in Poland is Trachemys scripta elegansie the red-eared slider. Representatives of this species are often called marine animals. This is a mistake as red-eared sliders live in fresh water, so keeping them at home is not a problem. Trachemys scripta elegans it is characterized by fairly flat, symmetrical armor. Adults are 28 to 35 cm long.
The red-eared slider must be kept in an aquaterrarium. The optimal dimensions of the tank for one adult specimen are 100x60x45 cm. This species likes to bask in the sun’s rays and should therefore be provided with a freely accessible land area, the size of which should be 1/3 of the terrarium surface. The rest of the surface should be covered with the water part. Above the land part, a heating lamp should be installed and it should be left on for 14 hours a day. The correct water temperature is 26 degrees Celsius during the day (it should be reduced by about 8 degrees Celsius at night). In the land part, a temperature of 26-29 degrees Celsius must be ensured.
- Interesting fact – the red-eared slider is a North American species, but thanks to its great adaptability, it managed to settle on all continents.
Observing reptile life is an extremely interesting experience, but many people want a pet that is more attached to people. The tendency to allergies does not mean that you cannot take care of your cat, you just need to choose the right breed. The sphynx cat is not one hundred percent hypoallergenic. Not only that, it produces the same allergens as other cats, but it causes allergies to a much lesser extent. This is due to the fact that sphinxes are almost completely hairless, which acts as a carrier for allergenic substances.
Before deciding to buy a bald cat, it is worth getting acquainted with the rules for caring for such a “spider”. It is important to know that all bald cats require special care. Their skin tends to dry out, so regular hydration is essential. In addition, the Sphinx requires weekly baths. Particular attention should be paid to the skin folds of the animal, between which dirt and sebum are collected. Due to the lack of a natural insulating layer, such a four-legged friend is prone to colds, so make sure that the apartment is at the right temperature.
- Interesting fact – sphinxes are extremely social and require a lot of attention from their caretakers. Therefore, such a cat should be decided by people who can devote enough time to it.
Being prone to allergies doesn’t necessarily rule out having a dog. It should be remembered that not all breeds are covered with hair. Nature has provided some dogs with her. An example of such a four-legged friend is shih tzu. These adorable puppies barely shed their hair and have no undercoat. It is worth emphasizing that for a person prone to allergies, a woman will be a better choice. Men have more sebaceous glands in their skin, which is why they secrete more proteins that can trigger allergy symptoms.
Shih tzu are small dogs with a calm, gentle disposition. They are easy to train (although they can be quite stubborn at times), but you have to remember that they need a lot of care. First of all, regular bathing is necessary (on average once every 2 weeks). Thick hair also forces the dog to brush regularly. This operation must be repeated every day. Shih tzu are especially vulnerable to eye diseases, so pay special attention to their eyes. Once a day they need to be washed with a special lotion or chamomile. We check the pet’s ears at least once a month. If hairs grow in them, pull them out.
- Interesting fact – the shih tzu breed is prone to weight gain, so the dog’s diet should be chosen in accordance with its nutritional needs.
We emphasize that the above animals are recommended as the best for allergy-prone people, but you should know that no choice is 100% guaranteed to be safe. It should not be forgotten that sensitizing factors can also be found in animal feeds or in specific environments, where some species should be supplied. Taking the role of guardian of the pet should be an informed and thoughtful decision, so before choosing a pet it is worth consulting your choice with an allergist, and before buying or adopting a pet you should at least a few days stay with him moments.