Your Health

Managing the Animal Allergen

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The protein contained in the dander, or skin, from animals is often a trigger for people with asthma. Cats and dogs are most common, but any furry animal can affect a person who is allergic.

In some situations, if you are highly allergic, it may be necessary to remove your pet from your house. In many cases, however, your reaction to a pet can be controlled with a combination of allergy medication and these common sense tips.

Prevent the pet from entering your bedroom by keeping the door closed and install air filters in the air vents of that room. It may be difficult, but try to keep the pet from climbing on furniture in areas of the house that you use frequently and change the linen if the pet has been on the bed.

Pet dander particles are extremely fine, and over time can land on most surfaces of your home. So be sure to dust often. Wear a mask to prevent inhaling any of the dander or chemical fumes. Those, too, can trigger an asthma attack.

Vacuum carpets and upholstered furniture often, preferably using a HEPA filter, which is a special filter that can trap very small particles.

Wash your pet often, and wash your hands thoroughly after handling your pet.

If you are a pet owner and have asthma, talk to your healthcare provider for more tips on managing the animal allergen.

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