FAQs: All you need to know about dog allergies

FAQs: All you need to know about your dog allergy

With over 12 million dogs sharing our homes and communities, it’s no surprise that dog allergies are on the rise. Unfortunately, many cases of dog allergies go undetected, leaving individuals unaware and untreated. The tiny allergen particles from dogs can quickly become airborne and find their way into various environments, making dog allergies a widespread issue.


This is particularly concerning among children. Schools have become hotspots for allergen accumulation. Even without dogs present on the premises. For adults, it’s the same story. The rise of dog-friendly spaces, such as offices, restaurants, and public transport, increases exposure.

Understanding dog allergies is more crucial than ever, whether you’re a pet owner or find yourself sharing spaces where dogs have been. We wanted to take you through some of the frequently asked questions about dog allergies.

What is a dog allergy?  

A dog allergy is an allergic reaction to one or more of the allergens produced by dogs. These allergens can be found in a dog’s hair, dander, saliva, and urine. When people with dog allergies come into contact with these allergens, their immune systems can react, causing symptoms like sneezing, itching, or more severe respiratory issues.

How common are dog allergies?

Dog allergies are pretty common worldwide, and the prevalence has been increasing over recent decades. A significant number of both children and adults exhibit allergic sensitisation to dogs, which can be a risk factor for conditions like asthma and rhinitis.

What causes dog allergies?

Dog allergies are triggered by proteins known as allergens found in the dog’s skin cells (dander), saliva, urine, and even hair. These proteins can bind to antibodies in the immune system of allergic individuals, leading to an allergic reaction.

What are the symptoms of a dog allergy?

Symptoms of a dog allergy can range from mild to severe and include sneezing, runny or stuffy nose, itchy or watery eyes, skin rash, coughing, chest tightness, shortness of breath, and wheezing. In highly sensitive individuals, exposure to dog allergens can exacerbate asthma symptoms.

How do dog allergens spread?

Dog allergen particles are tiny, light, and can become airborne quickly. They can be carried on clothes, circulate through air systems, and settle in household dust, making them pervasive even in environments where dogs are not present.

Are some dog breeds hypoallergenic?

No dog breed is truly hypoallergenic. While some breeds are marketed as producing fewer allergens, all dogs produce allergenic proteins. The difference lies in the amount and type of allergens they produce, which can vary by breed, age, and individual dog.

Can I live with a dog if I have a dog allergy?

Living with a dog can be challenging for someone with a dog allergy, but it’s not impossible. Strategies like maintaining strict cleanliness, keeping the dog out of certain areas (like the allergic person’s bedroom), and using air purifiers can help reduce allergen levels. Regularly washing the dog and any items it frequently contacts can also reduce allergens.

Can dog allergies lead to other health problems?

Yes, allergic sensitisation to dogs can be a risk factor for developing asthma and rhinitis. For those already with asthma, exposure to dog allergens can lead to poorer lung function and an 

increased frequency of asthma attacks.

What should I do if I suspect a dog allergy?

If you suspect you have a dog allergy, why not take one of our tests today? Identifying you have an allergy is the first step. Once you get to the root of the problem, our consultants can help put an action plan together with you to put you on a path to a more comfortable lifestyle. 


Copyright 2024. All Rights Reserved