How to Manage Pet Dander Allergies and Avoid Symptoms

Suffering from pet allergies can make you feel sick and uncomfortable. Pet dander, which is made up of microscopic patches of skin shed by cats, dogs, rodents, birds, and other animals with fur or feathers, is one of the most common allergens in the world. It is so light and small that it can remain suspended in the air for a long period of time and can easily adhere to furniture, bedding, fabrics, and many other household items. The most common symptoms of pet dander allergies are sneezing and runny nose.

People who also have asthma may experience wheezing and shortness of breath. Physical contact with pet dander can also cause contact dermatitis, skin rash, hives, or asthma in a person. Other symptoms include watery eyes, itching, and eczema or skin rashes. In order to diagnose pet allergies accurately, an allergy test is needed to detect the specific IgE (immunoglobulin E) for each allergen.

Allergies occur when the immune system reacts to a foreign substance such as pollen, mold or pet dander. In addition to dandruff, people with pet allergies can also be allergic to proteins found in pet saliva, urine and feces.

How to Avoid Pet Dander Allergies

If you're one of the millions of people who suffer from pet allergies, there are ways to avoid and limit pet dander to better control your symptoms. If you can't avoid being near the animal that causes your allergies, you can prevent pet dander from remaining by making sure all furniture, rugs and clothing are cleaned immediately and often after contact. You can also take medications to help control your symptoms.


Pet allergies are a growing problem in the United States and are now considered the most common trigger for allergies and asthma.

Any animal with fur can be a source of pet allergy but pet allergies are often associated with cats and dogs. You can't cure pet allergies but you can control symptoms by preventing pets from having known allergens and taking medications.