Are Cocker Spaniels hypoallergenic
Many allergy sufferers search for hypoallergenic dog breeds so they can experience the joy of owning a pet.
The Myth About Hypoallergenic Dogs
To cut straight to the heart of the matter, there is no single breed of dog that is completely hypoallergenic. There are simply breeds that produce less allergic reactions in people with pet allergies. Dog breeds that are typically grouped as "hypoallergenic" are usually low-shedders that produce very little dander.
Although many people believe that a dog's fur is what produces an allergic reaction, the reaction is usually caused by dander. Dander is a combination of skin flakes as well as dried saliva. There is a certain type of protein found in dog saliva that produces allergic reactions in many people. When a dog licks himself or anything else, the saliva dries and breaks down into tiny flakes that can easily become airborne or transferred on loose hair.
Sometimes dander isn't the problem. A thick-coated dog can actually carry dust, pollen and other allergens that produce virtually the same reaction.
The following list contains dogs that many people believe do not produce significant allergic reactions. However, you must judge for yourself if a particular breed lives up to your expectations.
- Lagotto Romagnolo
- Peruvian Inca Orchid
- Spanish Water Dog
- Shihchon - A mix of Shih Tzu and Bichon Frise
Tips for Allergy Sufferers
Choosing a fairly hypoallergenic dog as a pet is just the first step for people who suffer from pet allergies. Here are a few more tips that will help.
- Brush the dog daily (if it's a coated breed) to remove loose hairs that would normally collect on floors, furnishings and clothing.
- Use a moisturizing pet wipe to remove dander from hairless breeds.
- Vacuum carpets and furniture on a daily basis if possible. It's also a good idea to vacuum drapes and blinds.
- Keep your sleeping quarters off limits to your pet.
- Make sure you continue to take any prescribed allergy medication to further reduce any chance of a reaction to your pet.