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Hay fever treatment sabotaged by your dog?

Is your hay fever treatment failing?

The sun is shining, the grass is growing, spring is on its way and your eyes are watering and your nose is running.  Hay fever, or allergic rhinitis, to give it its scientific name, is a condition where the lining of the nose and eyes become inflamed after exposure to allergens, usually pollens. It is believed that one in five people in the UK suffer with the symptoms of sneezing, itchy throat and runny eyes, mostly in the summer when pollen counts are high.

Perhaps you are a sufferer.  You have followed all the hay fever treatment advice about keeping your nose clean, washing your hair frequently, wearing a mask even, and you use nasal sprays and antihistamines yet you’re still suffering. 

What is sabotaging your success?  Well, it could be your dog!

Think about all that running around they do on your walks; pollen can easily stick to your dog’s fur.  If you think that this could be a factor there are certain steps you can take.

What you can do

To prevent your canine friends spreading pollen all over your house, and transferring it to your carpets, bedding and soft furnishings, wipe their coats with a damp microfibre cloth before they come into the house.  You could also try banishing your dog from the bedroom.  And think about your dog’s bed.  Make sure you wash it frequently and ideally, place it somewhere neutral in the house – perhaps in a conservatory, if you are lucky enough to have one, or room that is used less frequently than others.  Your dog’s toys could also be harbouring pollen.  Wash these frequently and keep them somewhere safe and sealed when your dog isn’t using them.

Clean carpets with a vacuum that has a HEPA grade filter.  If the problem is really bad you could try swapping curtains for blinds.

You might invest in an air purifier and regular bathing of your dog will, of course, also help, ideally every one to two weeks.  Using a good quality dog shampoo such as Dog Hair Day could help

With a little extra care you may find that your hay fever symptoms calm down to an acceptable level.

What if it’s not hay fever?

If you are still having problems, it could be that you are actually allergic to your dog.  Allergies are to the dander, that is, flakes of dead skin, or to a dog’s saliva or urine. In this case you could contact your vet and discuss this with your doctor who may refer you for allergy tests. 

DISCLAIMER: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information contained here it is for educational purposes only. The writer of this article and Dog Hair Day can’t diagnose any physical, mental or behavioural condition in animals nor prescribe treatment. We urge you to consult your vet if you have any concerns about your dog.