Sadly when it becomes apparent that your child is allergic to the family pet, you are going to have some tough decisions to make. In this post we will look at ways to best manage pet allergies in children. We will discuss just what makes your kids allergic in the first place, and whether or not it’s necessary to take the awful step of getting rid of your family pet.

We will also give some tips and advice on how you can best negate the effects of pet allergies so that your child is not at risk and you still might be able to keep your beloved pet at home. We will be specifically looking at the most common pets of dogs and cats.

Pet allergies in children, how best to manage them.

What causes kids to be allergic in the first place?

So, i was under the mistaken belief that it was the animals hair? Apparently not though. Let me explain. It is actually the proteins that are found in the animals saliva, urine and pet dander. Dander being the little skin flakes that come off with an animals hair. A little like dandruff in a human.

But of course dogs and cats lick their fur all the time and unfortunately whenever they rub against a surface of your home or against your child then naturally it’s going to leave a residue of this protein. Unfortunately for the affected child, this protein will stay at full strength for quite a bit of time too.

According to the clever scientists at the AAFA (the Asthma Allergy Foundation of America) roughly 30% of people who suffer from allergies will have allergic reactions to cats and dogs.

Your child has to come first. A horrible decision to make?

Now here is the really important note I want to cover right off the bat. Your child’s welfare must take priority over any love you have for your pet. If your child suffers from asthma, and is highly or severely allergic to your cat or dog, then I’m sorry but your pets got to go. I’m speaking from experience on this one. I suffer bad pet allergies to cats and birds. Dogs I’m ok with. But cats just devastate me.

I’m an asthma sufferer and not too badly as I manage it well with my inhalers. But if I visit my sister who has cats, and stay longer than about 5 minutes, i’m screwed. I will start coughing and wheezing, my eyes and nose will run and if it effects my asthma I need to take my inhaler RIGHT AWAY.

And I’m an adult, so how do think your child is going to feel. So if the tips on this post don’t help, then you have to make a sad decision to re-home your pet.

OK, so now that bits been said, let’s look at what we can do to negate your child’s pet allergies as best we can.

Symptoms of pet allergies and how best to manage them in children.

Symptoms of pet allergies

The symptoms of pet allergies in kids will be the same as in adults, however they may be more pronounced and severe. They are as follows:

. Itchy watery eyes

. A stuffy or running nose.

. Itchy skin or rashes.

. Wheezing and shortness of breath

. Uncontrollable coughing, especially in asthma sufferers. TAKE THIS ONE SERIOUSLY.

So then what can we do to best negate these effects? First of all if you see any signs that your child has a pet allergy then you should go to your doctor and get them tested. It will give you an indication of how badly allergic your child is and a good idea of what else they may be allergic to as well.

Wherever possible in the home, try to go for hard surfaces as opposed to rugs or carpets. As they are just easier to clean and pet dander sticks to upholstery like furniture, curtains and carpets more easily. If you are going to have carpets in your home, try to keep them low pile, and certainly not in your child’s room.

Speaking of your child’s room, make this area off limits to your cat or dog. If you can I would recommend an air filter or air purifier as this will also help with any other allergies your kids might have too.

Your child’s room should be pet free.

I would still cover your child’s bedding with dust mite covers as although you can never truly be rid of all dust mites everywhere, you can at least try to keep them out of your kids pillow and blankets. As dust mites are another big cause of allergies in the home too.

Wash your pets at least once a week as this will help your animals reduce the amount of pet dander they produce. Speak to your vet or pet store clerk for which shampoo to use to aid with this. But be aware however, too much of washing will have the OPPOSITE effect and cause them to shed hair and skin more!

Get your kids in the habit of washing their hands and faces regularly after touching the family pet as this will help keep the protein out of their eyes, mouth and nose. It’s especially important to do this of your child gets a skin rash from their allergy.

Talk to your vet as they might be able to suggest a particular diet that can help reduce the amount of pet dander that your dog or cat is shedding too.

Always follow professional medical advice?

You should absolutely speak to your doctor as there are simple treatments and anti-allergens available, many over the counter that don’t require a prescription, but not all work the same way for all allergies. So ask a doctor or pharmacist which one would work best for your kids and their pet allergies.

I would like to point you in he direction of a site that is dedicated to the keeping and caring of cats and specifically an article about a particular breed of  cat that is less likely to cause allergies. Please click here now to be directed to that that site.

In summary then.

Well, that pretty much sums up this post. I hope you found it helpful and if you have a question, comment, or want to leave a like or share, please do so below, and as always I will respond to you promptly.

Many thanks,


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  1. AV 2001 says:

    Hey Kenneth,

    I’ve really enjoyed reading this article as you’ve provided us with tonnes of valuable information on “Pet Allergies in Children”. I bought a baby Labrador couple of weeks back and it started staying close to my baby girl. The first symptom I noticed in my daughter was itchy eyes and sneezing. I took a doctor appointment and went to him and he told me that this happens because some baby dogs have bad bacteria hiding in their fur. We gave vaccinations and took proper care of the dog and we’re all set. I strongly recommend people to take good care fo their pets, especially their fur. 

    Thanks a lot for taking your precious time in writing this post. Keep up the good work Kenneth! 

    1. Kenneth Glossop says:

      That’s great to hear. I’m glad that you were able to work out a way for your baby and pet to love in the same house. Take care.

  2. julienne murekatete says:

    Thank you for sharing with us this great article on pet allergies in children and how to manage them.We love our children and our pets too but we can’t forget that health of children is more important than anything else.

    I like this article because it contains tips on how we have to take care of our children and manage our pet so that they don’t cause allergy to our kids.

    1. Kenneth Glossop says:

      Thanks for taking the time to reply to me. I am always happy to give useful advice. Thanks and visit again. 

  3. Ray Blythe says:

    Great advice here as that would be quite a hairy situation lol. I like having carpet but what do you mean by keeping them low pile? Do you mean well vacuumed?  I have another question, I get the concept of cleaning the hard surfaces but is there a particular cleaning product that would be best to use for allergies? I’m assuming bleach but thought I would ask. Thanks for the great info!!!

    1. Kenneth Glossop says:

      Hi I would not go as hard as bleach as that can be harmful to your baby or pet. Another kind of softer floor cleaner will suffice just fine, thanks.

  4. Lok Which says:

    Thanks for sharing this informative and educative post. My son is allergic to Dogs . I bought a dog four Months ago then I discover my son do not want to be around the dog , I sold the Dog thinking It is that particular Dog my son does not like, getting a new dog two months ago , the same symptoms I had no choice than to let the Dog go . Reading this educate me on the causes and how I can manage it. Thanks.

    1. Kenneth Glossop says:

      Hello and thanks for checking out my review. I think you will find really good tips in this post and I hope it helped you out. Thanks, Kenny 

  5. Jon says:

    I used to joke with my son that the dogs were here first and that if he were to become allergic to them, he’d have to be the one to go!

    All kidding aside, I do have brothers with allergies and I picked up some useful tips here, thank you.

    One question: I’ve heard that children who grow up with pets from the beginning are actually less likely to develop allergies to them. Do you have any familiarity with that? So far so good, in my house!

    1. Hi john, it is true that you naturally build up more resistance to whatever your allergic to if your exposed to it enough, but it’s still not advisable to push your luck with allergies as you can have a severe reaction out of nowhere and be in trouble. Thanks

  6. Alice says:

    Thank you for this information. I also always thought it’s animals hair that causes not only kids but even adults allergic reactions to pet animals. 

    Anyway, everybody in the house are adults so we do not have to worry about kids developing allergies as a result of owning so many pet animals (we have 2 dogs and 3 cats). But just recently, a co-worker told me how she had to get rid of the 2 kittens she just adopted because she started developing allergies. On her way home from work one day, she saw 2 abandoned kitten along the road and decided to adopt them. However, after only a couple of months, I noticed that she couldn’t stop sneezing. She also often complained of stuffy nose and itchy, watery eyes.

    She really wanted to keep those poor little kittens but she feared that her allergic reactions would get worse. I wonder if there are medications one can take to suppress the allergic reaction and will allow them to keep their pets.

    1. Kenneth Glossop says:

      I know right? You learn so much through good research. I am glad to have been of help to you with my site and content. Please do come again. Kenny 

  7. Abagatan says:

    I learned a lot from this post especially in how to determine that children have pet allergies. Without the symptoms you will never know that there is such an allergy.

    Even adults can suffer from pet allergies.  In fact I do experience two of them, one, is itchy eyes though not watery and two, is stuffy nose even without common colds. I am sure this is from pet allergy.

    1. Kenneth Glossop says:

      Hello, thank you for letting me know you found my site helpful. Always pleased to be of help. Kenny

  8. j52powell says:

    I hope I won’t need your advice, but thanks for it, nonetheless. We’ve got two dogs and a load of birds.  The dogs are just puppies, 3 and 8 months, but are already a major part of the family.  The latest news is my son has a baby on the way.  If we run into this problem with the dogs, we can look to your advice.  Is there any concern regarding the birds?  They stay in their cages.  Thanks.

    1. Kenneth Glossop says:

      Congratulations on your future grandson! I hope all goes well for you and that you will be able to refer to my site again in the future if you need. Many thanks Kenny 

  9. Jon says:

    I used to joke with my son that the dogs were here first and if he developed an allergy to them, he’d have to be the one to go!

    All kidding aside, my brother has allergies and I picked up some useful tips here, thank you.

    One question. I understand that children who grow up with pets from the beginning are less likely to develop allergies. Do you have any familiarity with that?  So far, so good, in my household!

    1. Kenneth Glossop says:

      Lol, yeah I can understand that. After all we love our pets. Sadly though sometimes tough decisions have to be made. Hopefully my post will help other parents not have to choose between keeping the family pet and the well being of their kids. Thanks, Kenny 

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