Best Cat and Dog Pets for Allergy Sufferers

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There are several breeds of dogs and cats that are suitable for people who suffer allergies. Find out which breeds are the best for allergy sufferers.

Many people, especially children, are prone to pet allergies. Despite having cat or dog allergies many people still wish to have a pet and although there are really no such things as allergy free dogs and cats, you can choose from several breeds of cats and dogs that are recognised as the best cats or best dogs for allergies. Below are four dog breeds and two cat breeds that are highly suitable as pets for allergy sufferers.

Portuguese Water Dog

The Portuguese Water Dog was used in the past by fisherman to guard both the boats and the fish catch, and could dive into the water to retrieve fish that were getting away. They have a curly coat that sheds little hair, making it a good breed for people with allergies. This is the breed of Bo who lives at the White House with President Barack Obama and his family who choose him because one of their daughters is allergy prone.

This breed is well-tempered, loyal and easy to train. They have lots of stamina and should be walked daily and because the coat doesn’t shed they should be brushed regularly to prevent the coat becoming tangled. They also enjoy swimming.

Portuguese Water Dog Bo with President Obama

Photo credit: Walt Daily on Picasa

Bedlington Terrier

The Bedlington Terrier looks more like a lamb than a dog. It is a medium sized dog that is intelligent and friendly with a curly woolly coat and a roman nose. They make good family pets are they are great with children or older people and are happy to play games or sit quietly with their owner.

The coat needs brushing thoroughly at least once a week to remove any dead hair as it does not shed, and it is best to clip the coat every 6 to 8 weeks to prevent it from matting. Owners can learn to do this themselves. They are active dogs that should be walked twice a day if they are kept in a small area.

Bedlington Terrier

Photo credit: Pleple2000 on Wikimedia


Poodles come in several sizes and can be toy, miniature or standard. They are highly intelligent dogs that have a single layer or hair that does not shed. In texture it can range from soft and wavy to coarse and woolly. Show poodles have their coat cut in all manner of ways but normal pets require a weekly grooming and can be clipped very 6 to 8 weeks.

Toy Poodle Puppies

Photo credit: Sanna Vilma Kristiina Vitikainen on Wikimedia

Bichon Frise

The Bichon Frise is a small affectionate white lap dog that loves human companionship and is long-lived. It has a double coat with a coarse and curly top layer coarse and curly and a silky undercoat. Bichon Frises are often listed as dogs that do not shed but that is misleading. They require regular grooming and the outer coat prevents dead hair and dander from there undercoat being shed. Many owners clip the dogs every 4 to 6 weeks.

Bichon Frise

Photo credit: Editor at Large on Wikimedia

Cornish Rex

The Cornish Rex is a cat with a fine, soft downy coat that is wavy in appearance and does not shed. The coat is similar to the curly poodle coat but does not require clipping. The cats are highly affectionate and get along well with children. They are athletic, energetic animals who are more suited to indoor than outdoor living.

Cornish Rex

Photo credit: M.Gerver on Wikimedia 

Devon Rex

The Devon Rex is a small to medium sized cat that look similar to the Cornish Rex. It has a short curly coat that gives a rippled appearance. They have large ears set wide on the head that gives them a distinctive elfin look, and have been described as the E.T. of cats. They love human companionship and are very devoted. They do shed but it is minimal and allergy sufferers can generally tolerate them.

Devon Rex

Photo credit: Bebopscrx on Wikimedia 

Selecting a Cat or Dog for Allergy Sufferers

Before purchasing an animal the allergy sufferer needs to spend some time with the litter of animals to see if they react. If everything appears to be going well you should then discuss a three-day trial with the breeder. When you explain it is to test for allergies most reputable breeders will agree to this as they want their animals to go to homes where they will be an important part of a family.

Once you have selected your pet you should vacuum regularly, wash the pet bedding regularly and keep it out of the bedrooms. Dogs should be washed weekly and all dogs and cats benefit from, and enjoy, regular brushing.

© Jo Jackson September 2010

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Jo Jackson

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