Someone with a cat allergy can notice symptoms of the reaction: sneezing, hives, sneezing, swollen or irritated eyes. According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA), up to three out of every ten people in the United States who have allergies are sensitive to dogs or cats. According to the AAFA, cat sensitivities are roughly twice as common as dog allergies. Nonetheless, you may be seeking a friendly kitty to join your family and are wondering if certain cats are better suitable for allergy sufferers. After all, the greatest hypoallergenic dogs are usually discussed. What about the most allergy-friendly cats? While no cat is fully allergen-free, some breeds are reported to produce fewer allergens than others do. Learn more about the 10 greatest hypoallergenic cat breeds by reading our list.
What Triggers Your Allergies?
According to research, the primary factor that triggers allergies is a protein called Fel d 1 present in cat saliva. So, while cat fur may appear to be the primary source of the problem, it is their saliva. As a result, when cats lick the fur, the protein gets airborne, causing allergies to flare up. On the other hand, hypoallergenic cat breeds produce less protein, making them safer for allergy sufferers. According to Pumpkin Care, cat dander and urine are two more chemicals that trigger allergies. These allergens can also land on household surfaces and remain there for months. Overall, allergy sufferers will find hypoallergenic cat breeds to be a much safer alternative. In addition to breed, several other characteristics influence how much allergen a cat produces:
- Kittens produce fewer allergies than adult cats do.
- Female cats produce fewer allergens than male cats.
- Tamed male cats emit fewer allergens than non-neutered male cats.
- For some reason, lighter-colored cats release less allergen than darker-colored cats.
Is it possible to find hypoallergenic cat breeds?
So, what is a hypoallergenic cat if all cats manufacture the Fel d 1 protein? There are no hypoallergenic or no allergen-free cats, according to a study published in the Clinical Immunology and European Journal of Allergy. However, the study points out that Fel d 1 production varies widely across cats, with male cats producing between three and five times less of the protein following neutering. Female cats are also known for producing less protein than male cats. In brief, though there are no fully hypoallergenic cat breeds, those labeled as “hypoallergenic” are expected to produce less of the Fel d 1 protein, resulting in reduced allergy symptoms.
According to Find Cat Names, Fel d 1 protein is thought to be lower in this cat breed than in other cat breeds. Siberians are large cats that come in a variety of hues. The cats have a triple coat that may be maintained by brushing them once a week. Siberian cats shed seasonally, and combing them daily can help maintain their coats healthy, especially the undercoat, and reduce allergens. These cats have an educated and attentive nature; they enjoy learning and figuring things out for themselves. They are kind to children, other pets, and visitors and like being watched.
2. Devon Rex Cats
The Devon Rex, like the Cornish, has a defective gene that gives the breed the identification of Rex. It has fragile fur that readily breaks, which extends to the whiskers, which are prone to breaking. Grooming this cat is not recommended because the fragile fur can be further damaged. The Devon Rex may have bald spots, and because it has so little fur, it does not shed often, and when it does, it does not leave much fur behind. Devon is an active cat who enjoys engaging in interactive play. It also enjoys being the center of attention.
3. Short-haired Oriental
Although the Oriental breed is available in both shorthair and longhair varieties, cat allergy sufferers prefer Oriental Shorthairs due to their shorter coats. This breed is easy to care for and doesn’t shed a lot, which makes it an ideal cat for people with allergies. It is helpful to brush the coat regularly to reduce shedding and keep it in good condition. The Oriental Shorthair is known for being very talkative, outgoing, and active. Due to their social nature, these cats will need exercise or activity to keep them entertained. They love to form close friendships with members of their families or with pets that can handle their energy.
4. The Sphynx cat
Its lack of hair makes the Sphynx cat well known. Unlike most animals, the Sphynx lacks hair, which increases its hypoallergenic property. In reality, this isn’t always the case, as allergy sufferers are often reactive to the glycoprotein that is present in saliva and sweat, Fel d1. It’s a hairless kitten born in 1966, in Canada that gave birth to the first Sphynx. The resulting breed requires a lot of attention, including frequent skin oiling, but it is rewarded with a lot of affection and attention, as well as getting along with all family members.
The Ocicat is an aggressive, high-energy, and very intelligent breed that looks like a tiny version of an Ocelot. It is gregarious, conversational, and likes to play and be active with its family, so it might be a little demanding. Unlike most other cat species, some Ocicats aren’t afraid of water and may even enjoy swimming. These cats enjoy having companionship and having another dog or cat to keep them occupied in the house. Ocicats are low-shedders, although using a grooming cloth to remove dead hair on a regular basis can be beneficial.
According to Omlet, the Burmese, who derive their name from Burma, were initially introduced to the United States in the 1930s. Many thought the Burmese were really a dark Siamese, while others claimed it was a separate breed. Many fans try to define its breed bred the ancestral cat, known as Wong Mau. The Burmese were eventually discovered to be a hybrid between the Siamese and a dark-coated domestic breed. In many aspects, the Burmese and the Siamese are therefore similar. The Burmese is a vivacious, energetic, and curious breed that may also be highly talkative and loud.
7. The Javanese Cat
One long-haired breed of Siamese, known as the Javanese, is often considered to be of Balinese origin. In contrast to cats, it has only one coat layer, so it sheds less and stray hairs are fewer. Because the Javanese is a Siamese breed, you may anticipate it to be highly friendly and close to you. The cat will follow you all around the house as you work, and it may express itself softly. This loving species will willingly sit on your lap, sleep in your bed, and snuggle up with you at night.
The Bengal does have a delicate, light coating that sheds frequently but infrequently. They create little dander; therefore the hair that is shed usually does not irritate allergy sufferers, provided the coats are cleaned up regularly. These kitties have a unique appearance and require little upkeep as they get older. Bengal cats are also self-sufficient and simple to care for, making them ideal for those with hectic schedules.
9. Russian Blue
Russian Blues are calm, friendly, and content to spend a peaceful time alone or with their families, as seen by their coat hue. These cats are versatile, compassionate, and a touch shy at times. The cat breed has a short, dense coat that sheds slightly more than most other breeds on this list, so it may not be the greatest choice if you suffer from severe allergies. However, the cats’ coats are generally well-kept, and frequent grooming can help reduce shedding and allergens.
10. Rexes from Cornwall
Curly hairs that sit close to the skin characterize this cat breed. These short, thin coats, like the Devon Rex, shed very little, making them more bearable to allergy sufferers. These cats are playful, lively, and love to have a good time. The breed is inquisitive, energetic, and likes to be snagged, unlike many other cats. Cornish Rex cats enjoy the attention and can follow you around from one location to the next.
Other Things to Consider If You Have Allergies
There are things you should know if you own a hypoallergenic cat breed, even though they are less likely to aggravate allergies than other cat breeds.
- Chew toys – Toys that collect saliva from your cat can accumulate the protein you want to avoid. It is important to wash them as often as possible.
- Beds and Bedding – Chew toys accumulate your cat’s fur and saliva. By washing them regularly, you can keep them in good shape. Consider acquiring an extra bed and bedding away from your cat if you think it will be difficult to keep washing them on a regular basis.
- Personal grooming – Just because you choose a hypoallergenic breed for your cat doesn’t mean you’re exempt from grooming. So that you can appropriately handle your cat’s needs, do some research.
Allergens in Cats: A Problem
Due to the way that cat allergies spread through saliva, skin, and urine, they are challenging to eliminate since the allergies can remain for months after cat removal from the environment. Even the cleanest of homes may find it difficult to get rid of these bothersome particles. This can be a serious problem for people who have severe allergic reactions. Furthermore, anything as simple as a scratch or lick can cause a skin reaction. The hypoallergenic cat breeds on this list produce fewer allergens naturally than other cat types. However, they continue to create a small amount, which might induce a range of symptoms depending on the individual. Get one of the top hypoallergenic cat breeds and follow the preventative precautions given above to limit any sensitivities.
What are the Signs and Symptoms of a Cat Allergy?
Cat allergy can be minor or severe, depending on specific factors in an individual especially, an underlying condition of asthma. Every person’s decision with cat allergies will be unique. Some people, for example, experience allergic symptoms whenever they come into contact with a cat, while others only experience symptoms when they come into contact with specific cats. However, most individuals with cat allergies experience a few of the following symptoms:
- Red, watery eyes
- Stuffy nose
- Wrinkles or swelling on the skin
What Can You Do to Prevent Allergies in Your Cat?
For other people, being near cats is impossible due to the severity of their allergic reactions. On the other hand, hypoallergenic cat breeds allow many people to keep a furry feline with little to no sensitivity. If you still experience an allergic response to hypoallergenic cat breeds, the measures below may help relieve stress.
- To lessen the intensity of your symptoms, use an antihistamine – talk to your physician about a preferred alternative.
- Ask a family member or friend who isn’t allergic to cats to wipe the cat off with a moist towel regularly. Some allergens will be removed from the cat’s coat due to this.
- Purchase a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter and use it frequently around your home.
- Keep your cat’s food intake to a minimum.
Finding a Cat for Your Home That Is Hypoallergenic
If you or someone else in your household suffers from allergies, starting with cat breeds that shed little and require little maintenance or those we call hypoallergenic – is a fantastic place to start. At the end of the day, though, all cats are unique, and it’s difficult to predict whether or not a certain breed or cat would elicit a reaction. As a result, talking to breeders, veterinarians, or other professionals for further knowledge and analysis into your circumstances might be beneficial as you try to figure out which cat is perfect for you.