Dog lovers and allergy sufferers, take note: Dog allergens were just as… (Pete Souza/The White House…)
If you're counting on a hypoallergenic dog to keep the household free from sneeze-inducing allergens--don't. Levels of dog allergens don't appear to be very different in houses with hypoallergenic dogs than in those with other dogs, according to new research.
So don’t let those cute names fool you—labradoodles, cockapoos and other breeds thought to be good for dog lovers suffering from allergies don’t necessarily make better best friends.
Unlike previous studies, researchers didn’t inspect dander directly from dog hair. They measured allergen levels in the carpets or floors of 173 households with one newborn baby—and one dog. A month after the baby came home, researchers from the Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit collected dust samples from the baby’s room and measured levels of a common dog allergen, Canis familiaris 1.
They found no significant difference in the allergen levels between households with hypoallergenic dogs and other dogs, even after taking into account factors such as whether the dog was allowed in the baby’s room, the dog’s size or how long the dog had lived in the house.
The results of the small study were published online in the July/August volume of the American Journal of Rhinology and Allergy.
So dog lovers and allergy sufferers, don’t be misled, the researchers conclude in the discussion of the paper:
“Clinicians should advise patients that they cannot rely on breeds deemed to be “hypoallergenic” to in fact disperse less allergen in their environment. Additional scientific investigation into dog-specific factors and whether hypoallergenic breeds truly exist is warranted.”
And then we’ll know for sure if the Portuguese Water Dog, Bo Obama, keeps allergens in the White House at bay—or is just cute.
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