You’ve always wanted a feline friend, but every time you go visit a friend’s cat or say hi to one on your street, you leave with itchy eyes and a runny nose. Fear not, you’re not doomed to live out the rest of your days without a cat to call your own!
There are a host of hypoallergenic cat breeds with wonderful personalities to choose from. But before we start looking for the perfect cat, how does this allergy actually work?
Understanding Cat Allergy
Most cat allergies are caused by an enzyme in cat saliva or a secretoglobin called fel d 1. This secretoglobin, along with saliva is then spread around the house when cats shed their fur. A long-haired cat that sheds a large amount of hair will be more likely to spread allergens than a shorter-haired cat. So even if you’re not allergic to cats but your partner is, be very mindful before going for a long-haired mixed breed cat. The negative reactions to cat saliva and fel d 1 can range from minor respiratory irritation and itchy eyes to, in extreme cases, anaphylactic shock – not something to be trifled with.
The Devon Rex
The Devon Rex is named for its ‘rexed’ or curly hair. In actuality, the Devon Rex is coated in very short, velvety fur which only adds to its beautiful albeit alien appearance. Its large ears, short nose and high cheekbones give it an elf-like look which is complemented by its eccentric, playful personality. They are very affectionate and love to be at eye-level with their owners, often climbing onto your shoulders while you’re working or sitting in seemingly unreachable places high off the floor.
An extremely playful breed with a penchant for catnip they’ll keep you entertained for hours while giving you all the affection you desire. Their short coat almost never sheds and so they’re perfect for anyone who struggles with cat allergies.
These cats are unique in that they produce substantially less fel d 1 than most other felines and are therefore hypoallergenic despite their long fluffy coat. The breed developed from a mutation in the genetics of the Siamese cat which led to a significantly longer coat. Just as intelligent, playful and friendly as Devon Rex’ although more ‘classically’ beautiful, a Balinese is a pleasure to care for. Although they have a variety of coats, the most well-known and common is the seal-point coat (dark around the face and tail with a tan body) common in short-haired Siamese and as attractive as the games at the online casinos Singapore has to offer.
Although these are the first to come to mind when you think of a hypoallergenic cat, you’re going to have to be ready for a lot of maintenance. These cats, devoid of all fur, have particularly sensitive skin. But if you like their looks and you’re ready to put in the effort, you’ll be greatly rewarded with a cuddly, sensitive and vocal companion.
Don’t be disheartened, there are so many kitties who’d love to brighten up your home with their love and playful antics – just take the time to research which would suit your needs best. Or get a dog.