Do you love cats and dogs but also have allergies or asthma?
Well, you’re not alone.
That just goes to show how important it is for a lot of us to have a cuddly companion at home. But, does that mean you’re destined to suffer because of it?
Of course not!
In this post, we’ll reveal what the top choices are for low dander cats and low dander dogs. You’ll discover exactly what the best cat breeds for allergies are and the best dog breeds for allergies and asthma sufferers, so you can have a furry friend at home without any worries.
Before we jump into the list of the best cats and dogs for allergies and asthma, we wanted to point out that you can reduce the amount of pet dander in our home considerably by investing in an air purifier.
An air purifier works similar to a fan, but draws air into itself first, before blowing it back out into the room. During this process, it sucks cat and dog dander particles out of the air and traps them inside a filter. This means there are few particles in the air to trigger your allergies and asthma symptoms.
Air purifiers can also reduce the level of odors your pets produce and collect hair.
To find out more about these machines and how they can help you as a pet owner, take a look at our dedicated guide on choosing the best air purifier for pet dander.
List of Low Dander Cats
10 Best Cat Breeds for Allergies and Asthma
These are extremely low dander cats because their short fur coat requires little maintenance. That means they lick themselves less and don’t spread as much Fel d 1 protein which is the allergen that triggers allergy and asthma symptoms in people who are allergic to cats.
What makes this one of the best cats for people with allergies is the fact that this feline produces one of the lowest levels of Fel d 1 protein. So, if you want a beautiful cat with luxurious hair, this is a good feline to choose.
3. Cornish Rex
Unlike other cats that possess three layers of fur, this feline only has the bottom layer called “down” hair. Not only does this make for a super soft cat, but it also means there’s much less shedding of hair around the house. And with less hair, comes fewer allergic reactions to cat dander.
4. Devon Rex
Similar to the Cornish Rex, this is one of the best cats for allergies because it only possesses the down hair layer of fur. The hair is even shorter too, making it an even better choice for asthma and allergy sufferers.
This is another cat with low dander due to its single coat layer. However, unlike the Rex cats mentioned above, this feline contains the top coat called “guard” hair.
The fur coat of these cats cane either be wave, tight ringlets, or long corkscrew curls. Either way, it makes these cats good for allergies and asthma because dander particles stay trapped inside the hair clusters and they shed very little.
7. Oriental Shorthair
These cats have a very short, fine coat and therefore shed very little.
8. Russian Blue
This breed of cats is not only beautiful, but they also have a naturally lower production of Fel d 1 cat dander which makes them a wonderful pet to have in a home with allergy and asthma sufferers.
Veterinarians consider this to be these to be the best hypoallergenic cats around even though they have a luxurious long coat. That’s because they produce the lowest amount of Fel d 1 protein that causes allergic reactions.
These cats are hairless and therefore have nothing to shed around your home. Not only does that make them one of the best cat breeds for allergies, but they’re also lower maintenance cats to own.
List of Low Dander Dogs
10 Best Dogs for Allergies and Asthma
What makes these one of the best dog breeds for allergies? The fact that they’re non-shedding dogs. Their wiry coat will need some occasional brushing and care in order to remove old, dead hairs.
2. Afghan Hound
These low dander dogs have long, silky hair but they’re non-shedding as well. This makes these pups a great addition for anyone who suffers from allergies or asthma.
These dogs are low dander because they don’t shed very much and have soft, short hair. This is great news for anyone that has a sensitive immune system.
4. Bedlington Terrier
One of the best dogs for allergies and asthma has a striking resemblance to a lamb. However, this unique is what makes them a great choice for your home. Their tight curls and woolly hair rarely sheds.
The long, thick matted locks on this dog are what keep dog dander under control. These dogs don’t shed much at all and any dander on their skin stays intact.
6. Bichon Frise
One of the best dogs for people with allergies or asthma who want a pet that’s cute and cuddly. Their soft, fluffy coats are tightly curled which keeps dander and dead hairs from shedding all over your home.
7. Hairless Chinese Crested
This breed of dogs is almost hairless except for the top of the head and feet. It’s one of the best dog breeds for allergy sufferers because, with less overall hair, there’s very little shedding taking place.
8. Kerry Blue Terrier
Another non-shedding dog that’s great for any who’s looking for a low dander dog to bring home.
Unlike most dogs that have a double coat, this breed only has a single layer coat. Without an undercoat present, these pups shed minimally.
10. Portuguese Water Dog
These dogs have a similar fur coat to poodles but it grows much slower. That makes them one of the best dogs for allergy sufferers since much less shedding of dog dander and hair.
More About Pet Dander
What is Cat Dander?
Many people think that cat allergies stem from cat hair, but that’s actually incorrect.
When you have an allergic reaction or asthma trigger from the presence of cats, it’s always due to coming into contact with a protein called Fel d 1. Fel stands for Felis catus, the scientific name for a cat.
Fel d 1 protein is secreted through a cat’s saliva, urine, and skin.
And although cat hair is not an allergen itself, Fel d 1 does collect on it every easily through flecks of skin, self-grooming, and droplets of urine, which can then be spread when the cat sheds or comes into contact with objects around the home.
One of the reasons why getting an air purifier is important when you’re a cat owner is the fact that Fel d 1 can stay airborne for long periods of time. Therefore, it can end up in your eyes, throat, or lungs even if a cat hasn’t been present in a particular area of the home for a while.
Check out our guide on choosing the best air purifier for pet dander to find out more about how these machines can help.
What is Dog Dander?
Dogs have a different type of dander protein and it actually comes in two forms called Can f 1 and Can f 2. Both are found in dog saliva.
Can stands for Canis lupus familiaris, the scientific name for a dog.
Just like with cats, dogs spread their dander through self-grooming and then coming into contact with furniture and other areas of the home as well as the dried particles floating up into the air.
Tips to Avoid Cat and Dog Dander
While getting low dander dogs and cats is a good start, there are some additional steps you can take to lower your exposure to these allergens.
- Don’t let your dog or cat roam freely around the house. Your pet sheds dander everywhere it goes, both on surfaces and in the air, so keep certain rooms off limits or contain your pet to specific areas of the home to reduce the spread of animal dander.
- Keep your dogs and cats out of bedrooms. These should be dander-free zones for anyone that has allergies or asthma.
- If possible, put your cat outside or in the garage when you see that it’s self-grooming. This can help to reduce the spread of cat dander in the air.
- Bathe and/or groom your pets weekly to keep allergens and dead hair from spreading.
- Always wash your hands after touching your dog or cat. Dander can easily end up in your eyes or mouth if you’re not careful in addition to being transferred to other areas of your home.
- Clean your floors regularly with a vacuum that has a HEPA filter. It can captures dander particles as small as 0.3 microns.
- When dusting, using a damp cloth to clean surfaces. This will collect any cat or dog dander particles and prevent them from being scattered.
- Invest in an air purifier with a True HEPA filter. This can reduce up to 99.97% of particles as small as 0.3 microns from the air you breathe and lowering your exposure to pet allergens. As a reminder, here’s our guide on choosing the best air purifier for pet dander.
In closing, we hope you enjoyed this list of the top low dander cats and dogs. While this is not an exhaustive list of the best best cat breeds for allergies and best dogs for allergies and asthma, it’s a good one to get you started thinking about which type of pet you may want to bring into your home.