“In a forest of a hundred thousand trees, no two leaves are alike. And no two journeys along the same path are alike.”
― Paulo Coelho, Aleph
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Ah-choo: How to cope with allergies to pets
If you have family and friends who are allergic to your pets, there are some steps you can take to make their visits to your home more comfortable. The following are a compilation of tips gleaned from pet owners, websites, veterinarians and others in the pet industry.
• Use an air cleaner with a medical grade HEPA filter, which can help in removing unwanted allergenic particles from the air. Check out the Austin Air HealthMate: http://www.cleanairplus.com/austin-air-healthmate.html
• Depending on the breed, wash your dog – and cat if you dare – once a month. But be advised that over-bathing a pet can create more dander.
• Apply waterless shampoo, massage in and then towel off to help keep hair and dander down between baths.
• Brush pets daily outside. This removes hair and dander. Take a shower and wash your clothes to stop the transfer of hair and dander once you go inside.
• Use only washable pet bedding, and wash it separately in hot water at least once a month.
• If a pet is allowed on the furniture or bed, cover that area with a towel, blanket or other cloth that can be removed when company comes and can be washed.
• Use an electro static or other cloth to wipe down surfaces daily.
• Reserve a bedroom as a pet-free zone and only allow guests inside.
• Remove pet hair from furniture with vacuum attachments, a brush with crimped nylon bristles, or pick up a pet sponge at the pet store. A damp towel or regular sponge also works. Use light strokes pulling toward you.
• Use a dust mop or other dry floor cleaner frequently on uncarpeted floors, and remember pet hair accumulates quickly under and behind furniture. Frequent damp mopping also helps keep cleanup under control. Use a damp mop or towel on walls to pick up pet dander.
• Clean your carpets at least two to three times a year.
• Wear freshly laundered clothes around people with allergies.