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I am allergic to dogs but I want to own one

Dear Dr. Mike:
We have four children ranging in age from 15mos. to 10yrs.. We are planning on purchasing a dog in the next year. We need a dog that is very patient with children. My husband would also like a dog that he could take hunting. Our one son has asthma. Do you know of any breeds that might fit all these requirements? We sure appreciate your help. Someone had mentioned a Portuguse Water Dog because it does not shed. Are there any other dogs who have "hair" instead of fur? Please let us know if you have any good ideas.

Well this is an interesting question and actually a fairly common problem. I called a few of my clients with either allergies or asthma and asked them how they dealt with the problem. Most of the people were able to live with about any breed of dog. Some of their suggestions:
  • Several used a product called Loshed that is sprayed on the pet once daily for 3 weeks than used 2 times per week. Another product mentioned was Allerpet/D. They are designed to decrease the antigen shed from the dog.
  • Frequent bathing can also be beneficial in reducing the antigen load coming from the dog, almost any pet shampoo will help.
  • Using a double filtration vaccum so that when you empty the bag you dont release a ton of dust back into the house.
  • One person mentioned a tannic acid solution that she sprayed on her furniture and carpet that was supposed to decrease the allergens. She got the solution from her allergist.
  • All worked closely with their respective allergists.
Good luck, with 4 kids and a new dog you'll have an active house to say the least!

Dr. Mike

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