I’m Allergic to Cats… What Cats Are Hypoallergenic?
“I’m Allergic to Cats… What Cats Are Hypoallergenic?
Have you ever noticed that when you get around cats that you start to sneeze and then your eyes start to itch? get itchy watery eyes and then all of a sudden you exclaim I’m Allergic to Cats… What Cats Are Hypoallergenic? Is there anything that a cat lover can do? In this article, I will discuss the best hypoallergenic cats and how you can get one.
Well, have I got some news for you! I’ve compiled a list of the best hypoallergenic cats also known as low-allergen cats that you can adopt into your family and not have to deal with the sneezing and itchy eyes!
I have listed 12 different breeds of cats for you to choose from and I will elaborate on the top 5 best hypoallergenic cat breeds because I wanted to give you several options in choosing which is the right breed for you and for your family!
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What Cats Are Hypoallergenic? – Are You Allergic?
Without a doubt, being allergic to cats is a common allergy that some people have and it’s twice as common as dog allergies. But what is it about cats that make people so allergic and what can be done about it?
Firstly, let me share with you my experience that we just had with Sammie, because it is a prime example of what could happen and if you have the same experience as I did, please write them in the comments section.
Subsequently, when I first brought my kitten home, within a few days my son started sneezing and he asked me, “Ma, is Sammie a longhaired cat?” and I said, “I don’t know” “She’s too little to be able to tell” and he exclaimed, “Oh no, I hope she’s not!” and then I told him that I didn’t remember him being allergic to cats when he was growing up and he said, just long-haired cats.
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Obviously, this made me think about what makes people allergic to cats? And I have to admit that I was slightly in a panic because I waited so long for Sammie to come home to us and when she did, my son started sneezing! (I live with my son)
Eventually, his sneezing stopped! I was happy about that and I decided I would do some research to find out what makes cats fur so allergic to some humans!
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Which Cats Are Hypoallergenic – The Culprit of Allergic Reactions
“Fel d 1 is a protein that in cats is encoded by the CH1 (chain 1/Fel d 1-A) and CH2 (chain 2/Fel d 1-B) genes. Fel d 1, produced largely in cat saliva and sebaceous glands, is the primary allergen present in cats and kittens and Fel d 1 is also produced by cat skin itself.” -Wikipedia Fel D1 Clearly, Fel D 1 is the culprit! Nevertheless, this protein in your cat’s saliva, skin, and urine is what causes “dander.” Your furry child gets this on her fur during grooming sessions. And when it dries, it becomes airborne and it sticks on every surface that your cat comes in contact with.
This is why some people with a cat can still have allergic reactions long after the cat has left the house! It is due to their dander which is so small that it remains airborne for an extended period of time and sufferers can and will inhale this dander!
Meowzers Science Says?
I’m Allergic to Cats… What Cats Are Hypoallergenic? Well, cat allergies are caused by your body’s immune system that acts like it’s being attacked by these harmless proteins and it kinda reminds me of how a grown man acts when they have a cold!
Because they tend to act like they are going to die and they think they are very, very ill. when in reality we know they are fine… Any way we move forward. An allergy suffering immunes system will act the same way! (sorry guys but it’s true)
However, this causes inflammation that makes your eyes itch and causes nasal congestion and sneezing… (and sneezing… one more time and sneezing… haha, you know they come in 3’s)… Kinda like…? You guessed it… a COLD! Haha… get the chicken soup out!! Someone’s not feeling well…
As a matter of fact, I know a great chicken soup recipe for cats that humans can eat too click here for the recipe!
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I’m Allergic to Cats… What Cats Are Hypoallergenic? – Which One Should I Choose?
For the most part, when you start cat breed shopping, keep in mind that not all cats are hypoallergenic. However, some breeders have tried desperately to breed 100% “hypoallergenic” cats with no success at all! It’s just not possible because of this Fel D1 allergen.
Ironically, hypoallergenic cats produce less of the problematic Fel D1 protein and this means less chance of being allergic to this specific cat breed!
And now for some beautiful and interesting hypoallergenic cats!
So there are shorthaired breeds that don’t tend to shed as much and they leave less dander around the house.
Which is very good news for allergy sufferers in your home and then there are super fluffy breeds and some hairless.
It all depends on what you like and how the cat fits into your awesome family!
Now here’s the kicker – did you know that male cats tend to produce more of the Fel D1 protein than female cats do?
And on top of that, kittens produce less of this protein than adult cats! All this means is that it will take trial and error to find the perfect breed for your entire household. Let’s get to the jest of things here: The Hypoallergenic Cats!
Allergic to Cats? What Cats Are Hypoallergenic?
There are at least 12 breeds that are considered to be hypoallergenic cats
- Oriental Shorthair
- Cornish Rex
- Colorpoint Shorthair
- Ocicat Devon Rex
- Russian Blue
Now, let us take a look at the most beautiful hypoallergenic cats and the different breeds! Ultimately, their nature and personalities are wonderful and some love to cuddle, some even like to take walks and others love to nap next to you and spend time with your family!
It should be noted, remember that all the information in this article is for guidelines in choosing which hypoallergenic cat is for you. Here is a list of the few I have found.
The Burmese Beauty
The Burmese can be carriers of a congenital deformity which doesn’t affect the parents, it will affect the kittens though. Additionally, this cat’s ancestry dates back from Southeast Asia and was imported to Britain by soldiers who adored them and this hypoallergenic cat was also known as the Chocolate Siamese.
The Burmese coloring is so beautiful and robust that it has become the foundation for several “new” breeds such as Bombay, Tonkinese, and Burmilla.
The Burmese cat is known for the following:
- Super smart
- Very talkative
- Silky coat
- Muscular and beautiful to watch them move!
- Produce less of the Fel D1 allergy-causing protein
- A highly social cat
- Easy to groom – very little grooming is needed for this feline
- An extremely healthy cat
The Gorgeous Siberian Cat
Siberian and Siberian crosses are the best-tolerated cats for those who have allergies. They produce less of the proteins that cause the allergen itself. Did you know that the Siberian cat is the national cat of Russia? And they are also known as the Siberian Forest Cat however, they are usually referred to as the Siberian or the Siberian cat and the Moscow Semi-Long-hair cat.
Unlike the Rex or Sphynx cat breeds, the Siberian cats claim fame due to the belief they produce either none or very little of the allergen compared to other cats.
- Medium to large cat – considered one of the largest breeds
- Excellent mousers- they no longer have to work on keeping the Siberian granaries mouse-free Read about the history of the cat here
- Fluffy Cats – With dense-lush fur to withstand harsh Russian winters. With three layers to their coats and a moderately long coat.
- A few personality quirks – they love to play in the water and love taking a full bath!
- Extremely gentle feline – with a great temperament
- Affectionate with its family
Some allergy sufferers have reported having absolutely zero allergic reactions when surrounded by this cat! Paws up on that one my friends!
The Sleek and Leopard-Print Bengal Cat
Bengals are a mix between a domestic cat and an Asian Leopard cat. They come in a variety of beautiful colors and they have distinct markings that any cat lover would absolutely adore! I know what I do and I’ve always wanted one. However, it’s important to note that this cat is well over 2k if not more!
Bengal cats are the most energetic of the top 5 best hypoallergenic cats. Therefore, prepare yourself to take this cat for daily walks more than once a day!
This cat is:
- A very large breed- considered one of the largest in the world today!
- Playful and full of energy by nature loves to run and be walked on a leash
- Extremely Affectionate – a very loving cat
- Athletic – not a lap cat – but enjoys human company
- Doesn’t shed much – they groom themselves, so you will only need to occasionally groom them.
- Their fur has less of the Fel D1 protein allergen
Please note that in general, this cat is moderately healthy breed and they’re only recommended for families who have experienced being a cat owner for large cats and will have enough time to entertain this Bengal`s incredible energy.
The Delightful Ocicat
Also known as “I Think I See a Cat” Ocicat! Haha… it was funny to me… guess you had to be there haha! Ocicats resemble ocelots, an endangered wild cat that ranges from southwestern Texas to Argentina. The Ocicat is the first domestic feline breed to resemble a wildcat. The Ocicat is one of the top 5 best hypoallergenic cat breeds that everyone loves!
“This cat was developed by accident in 1964 when a breeder Virginia Daly crossed a Siamese cat with the Abyssinian. The idea was to create Abyssinian – Pointed Siamese. The first generation appeared as Abyssinian but the result of the second generation was a spotted kitten that was named “Ocicat”.
The American Shorthair was added to the breeding line giving the breed a silver coat and a larger, more muscular body and the result was a kitty that looks like it stepped out of the wild.” See ihypoallergeniccats.com
Some people say that the Ocicat are more like dogs than cats! They can be trained to fetch, sit & lie down and do other dog-related tricks.
- American shorthair – Low in the shedding department
- Extremely affectionate – they love to be a part of your family life
- Love games and toys.
- Make great family pets and are very devoted to the family
- Big-boned cat and very strong
- Low maintenance in the grooming department
- Generally healthy – except for some dental issues
- Highly sociable-loving cat
Our final Top 5 Best Hypoallergenic Cat Breed is:
Beautiful Russian Blue – The Cat Who Smiles!
The Russian Blue has been loved for many, many years and it’s widely believed that British soldiers brought this cat home from the White Sea port town of Archangel (Arkhangelsk) from Northern Russia. The Russian Blue is a fine-boned, muscular, elegant slender cat and also graceful gentle and sweet.
- Gentle with children – a sweet cat that adores people
- Pet and kid friendly – love to play
- Plush coat – seldom sheds
- Shy around strangers – reserved
- Very intelligent – Trainable to chase toys, fetch and chase sunbeams 🙂
- Can be left alone and amuse itself for hours, but will be happy to see you when you get home!
- Low in the Fel D1 protein causing allergen
Did you know that scientists claim that 5 – 15% of the world population is allergic to cats?
What Cats Are Hypoallergenic? – What To Consider First
Have you decided on what if you want to go to a breeder to purchase a hypoallergenic cat or do you want to adopt one from a shelter? I personally prefer to adopt. only because so many cats (animals in general) are homeless and giving a feline a furever home melts my heart and brings joy to not only the cat but to cat parents as well.
Although it can be tough to find what you are looking for at a shelter, it can be done. For instance, when I was in Indiana, there was a Maine Coon at a shelter that its owner didn’t want anymore.
They took her to the vet to be put down and luckily the vet wouldn’t do it and that’s how she ended up at an animal shelter.
It is wise to note that there are all kinds of breeds in shelters. I found this article by Pet Finder and they list the different cats in their member’s shelters. Check out Pet finder’s article here with the availability of hypoallergenic cats in their system.
Perhaps you don’t want to go that route, that’s fine too… However, it’s very important that you meet the cat before adopting or purchasing it. No matter what, make sure that this is the right cat for you and your family.
Possibly you could arrange a trial visit to bring the cat home with you and if you are allergic then you can return the cat. Or you can visit the breeder and hang out with the cats there.
Pawesome News… Right? 🙂
Just remember that buying from a breeder is ultimately more expensive and you will have to take into consideration that they will likely be a purebred, pedigreed animal.
In other words, purebreds can have health issues related to their breed and this includes hypoallergenic cats too. Take into consideration all that a pedigree will entail and some of their needs will vary depending on the breed you choose.
Are You Allergic to Cats – Relief for Dander Sensitivities
mrsparrowshealthycat.com does not intend to provide veterinary advice. We go to great lengths to help users better understand their cats; however, the content on this blog is not a substitute for veterinary guidance.
Above all, if you experience mild allergies while in the presence of your cat, know that there are several ways on how to prevent and/or relieve these cat allergy symptoms.
- Purchase a Pet Air Purifier which would help to reduce the protein allergens in your home.
- Pick up a really good brush to keep your feline groomed
- Wash their bedding at least once a week
- Wash her toys periodically
- Wash your hands after handling your cat.
- Refrain from touching your face or eyes after you have come in contact with your cat
- Keep cat litter in a well-aired area and wash hands after cleaning it.
- Take medications in order to relieve your allergy symptoms such as Zyrtec or Claritin.
Now that you have information about hypoallergenic cats, you can make an informed decision on what is best for you and your family.
Most importantly, we must be careful when choosing the right cat for our family. And although hypoallergenic is not 100% dander or Fel D1 free, we know that cat dander is the main culprit in the allergens that cause some people a lot of discomfort.
Do a little research of your own and figure out what’s best for your family. And don’t forget that it’s the level of protein in the cat’s saliva, skin and urine, not the fur itself.
Now that you have met some of the most beautiful top 5 best hypoallergenic cats, you can become a cat parent and that is wonderful news! I think it is! Paws Up! Purrs inevitably coming!
Are you or a family member allergic to cat dander? Which was your favorite Hypoallergenic cat? Do you already have one? Let us know in the comments section and if you liked this article, please share it with your friends!
All my best to you and wishing you a lovely day!
Meowz to you!
Donna Rayne & Sammie Mae
Copyright © 2019 Donna Rayne’s Blog, All rights reserved.
Founder of mrsparrowshealthycat.com
Writer and member of the partnership program at Quora.co