Can You Build Up an Immunity to Dog Allergies

Labrador

Dogs are by far the most popular pet in the US, with over 65 million households owning one. Chances are, between you and your friends, at least one of you has a furry partner-in-crime. Having to fight through runny noses and itchy eyes every time you hang out around a dog is not easy. So how can you build up an immunity to dog allergies?

What Causes Dog Allergies?

It’s a common misconception that dog allergies are caused by dog fur. Dog allergies are actually our body’s immune system reacting to certain proteins found in a dog’s saliva, oil secretions from the skin, dander (skin flakes), and urine

People are allergic to dogs in different ways. One person may get cold-like symptoms when they inhale the dander, while another may get skin rashes when they come into contact with a dog’s saliva. Dander and saliva can both be annoying to remove. It sticks to your furniture and your clothes, meaning that allergic reactions can come at unpredictable times. 

Building Up an Immunity to Dog Allergies

Unfortunately, given current technology, it’s not possible to build up an absolute immunity to dog allergies. But immunotherapy is a long-term solution that is viable for some people to pursue.

Immunotherapy is a process where a trained medical professional gradually exposes your body to the allergy-causing protein, either by injection or by swallowing a pill. Immunotherapy intends to tell your immune system to stop overreacting when you come into contact with the proteins.

However, immunotherapy is not for everyone. It’s not guaranteed to work for every case, typically takes a very long time for the immune system to adjust, and is not always affordable. Thankfully, there are other ways to manage dog allergy symptoms.

Managing Dog Allergies

Purchasing an Air Purifier

Air purifiers are designed to filter out particles in the air, including the dander that lingers. Look for air purifiers with HEPA filters to make sure that it can remove pet dander.

Medication

Two classes of medication are known to be effective against allergic reactions: antihistamines and corticosteroids. Both these classes of medication are available over the counter, but there are prescription options available as well. Please be mindful, however: it is possible to be allergic to these medicines, so this option is not feasible for everyone.

Create a dog-free zone

Establishing a zone where the dog does not go helps guarantee that there will always be a “safe zone” for you to retreat to if your allergic reaction gets bad. This zone may be a room, or an area of the house, but as long as the dog does not travel there, its saliva and dander will never be present..

Clean the House

As mentioned above, allergies are caused by proteins that stick to your furniture and your clothes. Cleaning the house often gets rid of the allergy-causing dander and saliva from the furniture, minimizing the chance of recurring allergic reactions.


Alternatively, Pacagen’s Dog Allergen Neutralizing Spray targets the allergy-causing proteins and neutralizes them, rendering the proteins harmless. By spraying a couple times in each area of the house, you can greatly improve your quality of life, even if you’re still allergic.

What About Hypoallergenic Dogs?

While hypoallergenic dogs are commonly believed to be “allergy-free”, the reality is all dogs produce the allergy-causing protein to some degree. However, there are differences between breeds and individual dogs themselves. Some breeds naturally produce less of the protein while others shed less, both causing less protein to be distributed around the house. Even within breeds that produce less of the protein, each individual dog is different. The simplest way to find out how compatible a dog is with allergies is to spend extra time around the dog to find out if you’ll develop an allergic reaction to them. – just make sure you’re taking extra precautions just in case.