Monday, December 22, 2008

Lazy Owner Rant? Or Concerned Parent? Re: Allergies

I like to keep an eye on Craigslist to see what's going on in my local area. I also check out other major cities just in case I find something of interest. I found this posting and it made me think a lot about allergies and how it has become a big problem but also a convenient excuse.

Before I go further, here's the post from CraigsList. For your ease, I have made a screen-cap of the posting. Below is the direct link. Or, click on the picture to the left to enlarge.
This poster brought up a good point. There are MANY people who get rid of their pets due to allergies. Either themselves or their children develop allergies to the pets. Some of them really do have severe allergies, but I have found that most really don't. Most people find that if they have a runny nose, itchy eyes, sore throat, etc then they get rid of their animals.
Don't forget the others who have begun using this as a good excuse to dump their unwanted animals at shelters that would otherwise refuse (even if they don't have allergies).
For most people's allergies, they get irritated eyes, nose and throat. This can easily be controlled by taking common allergy medications. I had always thought that allergies were something to be managed - my father has asthma and allergies to both dogs and cats that send him into asthma attacks. He can manage this with the use of meds and willpower.
Severe allergies can be more than problematic and often can't be controlled with meds - where one touch can send the skin into a rash that may break open or bleed. I hadn't realized that this existed until I met my husband who can't touch a cat (he's fine with dogs though). Perhaps you have to cover your baby with cream to prevent the dander/hair from touching? For those who have severe allergies, I know your frustration ...
That being said, however, I do believe that you CAN manage all allergies if you will it to be so. How? Below are some examples of what you can do:
- Have your dog/cat groomed regularly (every 3-4 weeks) This removes excess hair and dander
- Keep good quality bathing supplies handy so that if the dander gets too much you can bathe them yourself between grooming dates (no more than once a week though or you'll do damage to their skin and fur!)
- Brush them every day for minimum 30 minutes. Change types of brushes every other day to get different fur/dander out.
- Get a hepafilter vacuum and vacuum your house daily
- Keep your house dusted
- Wash your curtains regularly
- Vacuum your couches, etc.
- If you have carpets, you could have them removed or have them steam cleaned regularly (we own a steamcleaning machine to keep costs down)
- Keep your furnace filter clean (you'd be surprised how much hair and dust is caught here!)
- Go to a naturopath and ask about allergy shots - most people don't know you can desensitize your body by taking a shot once every 2 weeks for a few months!
Holidays are coming everyone ... why not put one of these things on your wishlist? All those people who want to get you something? Tell them all to contact one another and pitch in to buy you a steam cleaner or hepa-vacuum. Tell them you need the good quality, Oatmeal shampoo and conditioner for your dog but it's $30 each bottle and you'd like it for your Stocking.

Allergies can be bad and they can affect your life, but don't let them control it.

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