To create a more pet allergy friendly home, there are several steps you can take to reduce the build up of allergens and bring relief to pet allergy sufferers in your home.
Hardwood floors or other smooth-surface flooring do not collect and hold the particles that cause allergies. Carpet is a continuous reservoir for dust mites, pet hair and its oils, and other contaminates. Also avoid grooved wood or pourous tile.
Leather furniture is ideal for homes with pet allergies. For the same reason that hardwood flooring is more suitable than carpet, leather holds far less allergens than fabric.
In fact, avoid fabric as much as possible, to include items like blankets, decorative pillows, and chair cushions. Keep a seat for the allergy sufferer that pets are not allowed to sit on.
All mattresses harbor dust mites. Studies show that even new mattresses brought from the showroom will have significant dust mites when vacuumed and measured.
The best solution is to fully enclose the mattress, and bedding when possible, with anti-allergen barriers. And of 'course, make the bedrooms a pet-free zone.
Again, fabric is a big culprit for harboring allergens. Avoid curtains, drapes and other fabric window coverings. Instead, use wipeable vertical blinds or shades that collect less dust and are easy to clean.
Paint is your best option as wallpaper is essentially a fabric-like material that attracts and holds particles floating in the air. Water-based paint, rather than oil-based paint, is recommended.
Frequent grooming and bathing of your pet with a mild soap to prevent over-drying their skin will reduce the dander that is one of the main causes of pet allergies.
Wash hands after playing with a pet and avoid touching the facial area with unwashed hands. Since some individuals are also allergic to the saliva of pets, it would be sensible to train a pet not to lick people.
It is heartbreaking to discover that a family member is allergic to a pet in the home, or to be denied a pet due to allergies. Depending on the degree of symptoms and the allergic reaction itself, creating a home environment that is as allergy-friendly as possible may be a happy-ending solution.