It is very difficult to love dogs and have a dog allergy. You want nothing more than to have your four-legged friends running around your home, but your allergies make this very difficult.
So, you may be wondering if there are any types of dogs you could get that would not trigger your allergies so you could co-exist together peacefully.
In this article, we will discuss whether or not chihuahuas are hypoallergenic, what some triggers of dog allergies are, and if there is anything you can do about it. So, if this is of interest to you, then read on for more!
Are Chihuahuas Hypoallergenic?
No, chihuahuas are not actually hypoallergenic! There is a big misconception about what ‘hypoallergenic’ actually means.
We will look at this more in-depth later, but for now, all you need to know is that dog allergies are not actually caused by fur, but by dog dander.
It is also important to note that dog allergies will affect individuals differently. So, some individuals who are allergic to some dog breeds may not be allergic to chihuahuas, no matter if they are long or short-haired.
What Does The Term ‘Hypoallergenic’ Actually Mean?
As previously mentioned, there is a common misconception surrounding the word ‘hypoallergenic.’
What this term actually means is as follows: when a dog breed is hypoallergenic, then it has a small chance of causing an allergic reaction.
This is in opposition to a dog breed that is not hypoallergenic, which means it has a larger chance of causing an allergic reaction.
It is important to note that the chance of having an allergic reaction is still present even if something is hypoallergenic.
So, What Is The Cause Of A Dog Allergy?
Dog allergies are caused by a protein that can be found in a dog’s urine, saliva, hair, or dead skin, also known as dander.
Dogs will produce varying amounts of dander, and it all depends on their breed. The less dander a dog breed produces, the less likely you are to have an allergic reaction to it, but again please note that this does not make it impossible.
Your immune system will begin to act strangely during an allergic reaction. It will clarify allergens as harmful via the antibodies it produces, even though the allergens are not harmful.
So, your lungs and nasal passages become inflamed and irritated when you inhale the allergen. The more exposed you are to the allergen, the more likely it is that you will develop something known as chronic airway inflammation. This is similar to asthma.
If you already have asthma, then exposure to allergens could also lead to an asthma attack.
What Are Some Symptoms Of A Dog Allergy?
Here are some key symptoms of a dog allergy!
- A rash on your skin
- Itchy watery eyes
- A stuffy nose
- A runny nose
- Facial pain and pressure
- Shortness of breath
You can also develop:
- Itchy skin
It is important to note that dog allergies can become a life-threatening experience if they are left untreated. It is always important to consult a medical professional if you think you have a dog allergy.
How Can I Live With My Dog And A Dog Allergy?
Sometimes, you will feel like you can no longer have a chihuahua if you have dog allergies. However, there are some things you can do to ensure that you can keep chihuahuas as pets safely despite your allergies.
Your dog allergies may not affect you when it comes to chihuahuas. However, if they do, here is what you can do:
Have Chihuahua-Free Zones
Specifically, your bedroom. It isn’t easy not to cuddle up with your dog in bed at the end of a challenging day. However, if you want to keep your allergies to a minimum, it is worth having one room that is off-limits to your pet or letting your small dog sleep in its own dog bed.
This ensures that you have a space free from potential dog dander, etc, so you can have a good sleep.
Clean Your House Regularly
Cleaning your house regularly can help with decreasing your chances of an allergic reaction. You should vacuum your home at least once a week. It may also be helpful to use a vacuum cleaner that has a HEPA filter to catch dust and any other allergens.
Additionally, you should invest in a Swiffer cloth to make cleaning easier. It will also be helpful to mop at least once a week, change your bedding frequently and use hot water to wash the old bedding.
HEPA filters are not exclusive to vacuum cleaners. You will also be able to find them in air purifiers, too. When you place an air purifier in the house then it is said to reduce allergic reactions to pets.
However, you will also need to ensure that you change the air filter on a regular basis, too. This makes sure that you are getting an adequate amount of protection.
You should wash your hands frequently, especially after playing with or stroking your chihuahua while having a dog allergy.
On top of an air purifier, it is a good idea to keep windows open to allow for air circulation.
Buy The Right Dog Food
It is a good idea to buy the right dog food for your chihuahua. The better quality of food your Chi has, the healthier their skin will be and the likelihood of them producing a lot of dander decreases.
So, you may want to consider grain-free food.
If you have checked with your doctor and they have deemed it appropriate, then you could get allergy shots. These will not totally eliminate any allergy symptoms, but they will reduce them.
This therapy will last for 3-5 years.
Chihuahuas are not hypoallergenic because allergic reactions to dogs are caused by dander, not fur.
Still, an allergic reaction to your pet Chihuahua can happen, and nobody wants to have to give up their pet because of allergies, and now you don’t have to!
However, it is always important to consult your doctor about pet allergies and to follow their advice. We hope this article helped you to understand if chihuahuas are hypoallergenic.