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You like cats, bbut not your allergies. Even a few minutes around cats makes your eyes water and you start to sneeze. You assume you’ll never be able to have a cat because of your allergies, but you fight your body’s natural reaction and adopt a beautiful Persian cat. And that’s it: your allergies strike again, as if at the right time. So, is a Persian cat hypoallergenic?
Persian cats are not hypoallergenic. Although no cat is 100% hypoallergenic, Persian cats are not allergic. They shed more and produce more protein than other breeds. Persian cats have an average amount of Fel d1 protein which can cause certain reactions such as a runny nose or watery eyes.
No breed of cat is 100% hypoallergenic, meaning they won’t trigger your allergies with a full guarantee. No matter what a cat commercial might say, every cat will blast your allergies if you’re allergic to them. But there are breeds of cats that do not aggravate your allergies due to the type of fur the cats have.
Even if you have a breed of cat that is allergic, like your sweet new Persian, you don’t have to continue to suffer or, worse, abandon your best friend.
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What Makes a Cat Hypoallergenic
You might think that all that cat hair stuck to everything — including you — is what’s making your nose itchy and your eyes watery, but that’s not all. Of course, you can also be allergic to hair, but most people are allergic to a protein called Fel d1 protein.
So where does this protein come from? This protein does not come from the fur itself, but surprisingly from the skin secretion of cat saliva. It is a common misconception that this is the fur that most people are allergic to.
So why do I think I’m allergic to fur
The Fel d1 protein attaches to your cat’s hair, which then attaches to everything you own: your furniture, your clothes, the dinner you cook. People then assume that hair makes their allergies worse. In some ways it is, but it’s the protein on the hair, not the hair itself. Since protein isn’t something you can see, it’s not easy to know if you don’t know the science behind it.
Cats that don’t shed as much or shed hair mean they are more hypoallergenic. The logic is simple, right? Less cat hair around your house means less Fel d1 protein to trigger your allergies.
Are all cat breeds the same
You’re in luck if you’re looking for a new best friend, even if you have allergies.
Different breeds of cats may be better or worse for your allergies, depending on the type of fur they have, their length, and the amount of Fel d1 protein they secrete. Certainly no breed of cat will trigger your allergies, but some breeds might be easier to manage than others.
Check out the list in the next section to get an idea of cat breeds that might limit the number of tissues you go through.
What breeds of cats are hypoallergenic
While no cat is 100% hypoallergenic, here are some other cat breeds to consider:
1. Sphynx (sometimes called hairless cats)
2. Oriental Shorthair
3. Russian Blue
These breeds are more allergic for different reasons. For example, the Sphynx is hypoallergenic because, well, there is no fur in which the Fel d1 protein can get trapped.
Other breeds – the Balinese, the Russian Blue and even the Siberian Longhair – produce less Fel d1 protein.
Many people assume that the hairless cat is the only option for allergy sufferers. But you also have other options. You don’t have to exclude long-haired cats because you’re afraid of fur; you just have to do a little research first.
What about the Persian cat
Persian cats are gorgeous, with their long fur and unique faces. Impressive enough to forgo your allergy worries and adopt.
And as soon as you get home: Ah-choo!
Your allergies don’t think your new Persian is as cute as you are. Your cat keeps herself clean enough, and you’ve been diligent about vacuuming the fur around the house, but you still suffer from allergies. And those allergies might even be worse than when you visit your friend who has an orange tabby cat. Sure, Tabby hair is shorter, but does longer hair mean more sneezes? Not exactly.
Why is the Persian cat worse for my allergies
We’ve already talked about that Fel d1 protein that you’re probably allergic to. It is related to your cat’s hair.
Persian cats have more fur and shed more, so they produce more protein, especially if they are not bathed regularly. Unlike the long-haired Siberian who can be somewhat hypoallergenic, the Persian produces the usual amount of Fel d1. This means that it’s not always about the length of your cat’s fur, but about how much fur they can shed in your home.
Tips for Managing Allergies as a Persian Cat Owner
So you bought your Persian cat (or any other non-allergic breed) thinking you wouldn’t get allergies from your cat. And you don’t want to give up on your new best friend! Here are some tips for dealing with those annoying allergies:
- Limit your cat’s movements. You don’t want to confine your pet too much, but maybe Fluffy can’t sleep in bed with you.
- Bathe your cat regularly. If you don’t want to do it yourself, find an excellent, trustworthy groomer.
- Use HEPA cleaners to keep allergens in your home at bay.
- Use a high performance vacuum cleaner.
Will my cat sometimes shed more than other times
How much your cat sheds likely depends on many factors, from the diet you feed her to the climate you live in. However, if you live in a four-season environment, your cat will likely start shedding more in the spring and summer. Your cat grows a thicker coat in the winter to keep him warm, then sheds during the summer to stay cool. Many people call this “blowing their coat”. Therefore, your allergies may not be so bad in the winter, but they really come back when the temperatures start to rise.
But will my allergies ever go away
Well, unfortunately, probably not. You can do what you can at home to control allergens, but if you want a cat allergic to cats, you may still have to deal with allergies.
Allergy medications prescribed by a doctor can also help, so consider those as well. Like I said earlier, no cat is 100% hypoallergenic, so the best you can do is limit allergens if you want a four-legged friend to live in your home.
If you can’t beat them, join them.
Remember: allergies don’t have to be the end of the road. I had a family friend who loved cats. I want to say, love cats. Everything she owned was related to cats. She even made the front page of the local newspaper for being the “crazy about cats, ma’am.” She also had three cats of her own. And guess what? She was completely, totally allergic to cats. With proper care and attention, she was able to live with her cats without major issues. And if she could do it (even with her allergies), so can you.