how to control pet dander

It's the dander, not the fur that's causes sniffles, sneezes and other allergy symptoms. Find out what you can do to keep it under control

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You don't have to necessarily bid farewell to your favorite four-legged family member when your child has allergies, but you do have to be more mindful. Here are guidelines recommended for keeping your child healthy.
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Create Pet-Free Zones

If your child is allergy prone, then it's important to rein in where you pets can roam in the house. Here are some tips:
  • Keep Fido or Fluffy out of your child's bedroom; after all, your child is spending 10 to 12 hours a night there

  • Bar your pets from your child's playroom or other favorite spots in the house

  • Launder or steam clean your pet's favorite sleeping area to eliminate pet dander

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Bathe Your Pet Regularly

He may not like it, but bathing your pet weekly will send a lot of dander down the drain. This goes for cats and dogs. And if you like to brush your cat or dog, do it out of the house to avoid disbursing dander into the air.
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Let Them Roam

The more time your pet spends outdoors, the less dander there will be in your house. So encourage your child and pet to play outside often. Outdoor play will allow the dander to blow away rather than settle on furniture and carpeting.
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Keep It Clean

Your child should wash her hands every time she pets or plays with the family pet. Rubbing the eyes or nose with her hands after touching a pet amplify symptoms like wheezing, sniffles, or teary eyes.

It's also important that you take the following steps in your home:

  • Use a HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Arresting) filtered vacuum regularly, being sure not to vacuum while your child is in the room

  • Dust all hard surfaces regularly with microfiber dust rags

  • Vacuum and/or steam clean upholstery--curtains and furniture--regularly

  • Purchase a quality air filter to remove allergens from the air

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Consider a Different Breed

If your child is sensitive to pet dander, you can try looking for breeds of cats and dogs that do not have highly allergenic dander. It may mean saying goodbye to a favorite friend, but it won't mean giving up having a pet entirely.
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Jessica Brown
Important Disclaimer: This information is not meant as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always consult a doctor with questions about your or your child's condition. NickJr.com does not recommend or endorse specific tests, products, procedures, opinions, or other information provided by any sponsors or other third parties. Please also see Nickjr.com's Terms of Use.
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