Just because you suffer from cat allergies doesn’t mean you don’t like cats. It’s a cruel twist of fate that you could be allergic to your favorite creature! If you find yourself in such a boat, you might be searching for solutions, such as hypoallergenic cats. Hypoallergenic cat breeds are supposed to be less harmful to those with cat allergies, and there’s a list of breeds that make the cut.
Russian Blue cats are moderate-sized felines with gentle, loving personalities. They have incredibly soft coats and an elegant appearance, but are they hypoallergenic? Technically, yes; Russian Blue cats are considered to be hypoallergenic. However, that doesn’t mean they’re necessarily the answer to your allergy issues. Let’s take a closer look and see if this breed is right for you.
What Causes Cat Allergies?
If you suffer from cat allergies, you might not even know what’s causing it. Sure, you know that being around cats flares your allergies up, but what is the actual mechanism by which this happens?
The culprit, as it turns out, is an allergen known as Fel D1. This allergen is found in cat saliva, and approximately 10% of the population is allergic to it. Cats are constantly licking themselves as a method of grooming, which causes the Fel D1 to buildup on their coat. This is then released into the air and onto the ground in your home, where it’s picked up by your body and causes an allergic reaction.
Are There Any Hypoallergenic Breeds of Cat?
What is a hypoallergenic cat? Many believe that these are cats that don’t affect allergies. Unfortunately, every cat produces the Fel D1 allergen. Even breeds that are considered hypoallergenic produce the allergen. So, in reality, there are no breeds of cats that you could consider to be truly hypoallergenic.
What Makes a Cat Breed Hypoallergenic?
So, if no breeds are actually hypoallergenic, then why are they considered to be? It’s because even though they do produce the Fel D1 allergen, hypoallergenic cats don’t produce as much of it as other breeds. This means that people who suffer from cat allergies could have less of a reaction to these particular cat breeds, though it’s not guaranteed.
Each person’s allergies are unique. You might be severely allergic or only slightly. If you’re only slightly allergic to cats, to begin with, then a hypoallergenic breed might not cause a noticeable reaction in you. But if you have a severe cat allergy, then even hypoallergenic cat breeds will likely cause too much of a reaction for you to live with them.
Are Russian Blue Cats Good Pets for Allergy Sufferers?
When it comes to cats that are considered to be hypoallergenic, there are only a few. Luckily, Russian Blues make that exclusive list. They’re one of a select group of felines that produces lower amounts of the Fel D1 allergen. So, if you have a minor allergy to cats, then a Russian Blue might be a breed that you can handle being around. However, if you have a serious cat allergy, the effect will probably still be too strong for you to keep one in your home.
How to Reduce Your Cat’s Impact on Your Allergies
The good news is that there are steps you can take to reduce the impact your cat has on your allergies. When paired with a cat that produces fewer allergens, this could be enough of a combination to allow someone with minor cat allergies to live reaction-free with a pet cat.
1. Dust Regularly
It might seem simple, but dusting regularly can reduce airborne cat allergens by as much as 95%. When dusting, spray furniture polish directly on the dust first.
2. Use HEPA Air Purifiers
HEPA air purifiers can help to remove any floating allergens from the air. They’re simple to use and you can put one in each room the cat uses.
3. Keep Them Out of Your Bedroom
Don’t let your cat in your room. The carpet and all the textiles on your bed will trap the allergens, acting as a sort of allergen magnet.
4. Wash Your Textiles
As mentioned, textiles trap allergens. Make sure to wash your linens regularly to remove any trapped allergens. While you’re at it, clean your couches as they can trap just as many allergens.
5. HEPA vacuum with Micro-Filtration
Regular vacuuming will help to remove all the allergens that settle on the floor. A HEPA vacuum with micro-filtration will ensure that no allergens are being spread as you try to suck them up, which is a common occurrence with regular vacuums.
The truth is, there are no cats that are a great fit for anyone who suffers from severe cat allergies. But if you have only mild allergies to cats, then a Russian Blue is one breed that could have less of an impact on you. Your best bet is to find a Russian Blue and spend some time with it so you can see what sort of reaction you’ll have. Each person is different, and even if Russian Blues don’t cause an allergic reaction in everyone who suffers from cat allergies, your experience might be different.
Featured Image: Nailia Schwarz, Shutterstock
- What Causes Cat Allergies?
- Are There Any Hypoallergenic Breeds of Cat?
- What Makes a Cat Breed Hypoallergenic?
- Are Russian Blue Cats Good Pets for Allergy Sufferers?
- How to Reduce Your Cat’s Impact on Your Allergies