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So you love your pet? Don’t we all? But however much we love our furry friends, we’re all perpetually worried about the harm they can do to our health, with all the dander they leave around in the air. Fortunately, there are various ways to get rid of pet dander in the house, easily and efficiently.
Let's first take a quick look at what exactly is pet dander and why it's a problem you want to get rid of.
The Problem of Pet Dander
One common health hazard of this dander is allergies, and one can be attributable to pet dander. The symptoms may include to itching in the eyes, runny nose or sneezing, nasal congestion and even wheezing or breathing problems.
Contrary to what most of us believe, it’s not our pet’s hair that causes these allergies. It’s actually the proteins found in the skill cells, urine or saliva of our pets that are the culprit. Dried proteins combine with dead skin to leave dander. Not only dogs and cats, but virtually all pets are known to cause allergic reactions on this account.
So is there no solution to this problem except to keep away from your adored pet, which you obviously don’t want to do?
Read on for a few quick and simple remedies, which you can easily adopt to eliminate the dander danger caused by your pet.
How to Get Rid of Pet Dander in the home
Bathe your pet frequently
Bathing an animal frequently is found to reduce their allergen levels significantly, and is a good way of getting rid of dander. Studies suggest you should bathe your animal every three days to ensure that the animal is free of dander, and remains so.
Use a shampoo that’s been made to reduce pet dander and clean your animal with lukewarm water (using hot water won’t help as it will dry your pet’s skin, thus increasing the chances of dander).
Brush and spray your pet regularly
Regularly brushing your pet’s hair with a brush that’s crafted to hold the hair as well as the dander, is another solution to pet dander. Use a face mask while doing the job. You can also try an anti-allergen spray on your pet, as per a vet’s advice.
Allocate some spaces as “pet-free”
While you may think of your pet as a member of the family and want to give it a free run of the house, it may be a good idea to keep your furry animal out of certain parts of the house.
You could perhaps think of keeping your bedroom, study etc., out of bounds to your pet. Don’t allow your pet into your car, if possible, and also keep it away from heavy furniture in your house.
Clean the space regularly
Regular cleaning by vacuuming or shampooing carpets, and changing air filters, is also helpful to keep pet dander at bay.
The bedding of your pet, or any other mattress which it’s been using to sleep, also needs a regular clean-up to rid your house of pet dander.
Upholstered furniture is also something that needs cleaning several times a week in households with pets.
You should use a good quality HEPA filter vacuum cleaner if you want to ensure your vacuuming captures all the pet dander. In addition it’s a good idea to wear a face mask while vacuuming your house.
Of course, Home Vacuum Zone can assist when it comes to selecting the best vacuum for pet dander. We even review the best robot vacuums for pet hair if you want to automate your cleaning schedule.
Check out our Ultimate Vacuum Buying Guide for further advice on finding a model that is right for you.
Buy hypoallergenic bedding
In case it’s difficult to keep your pet out of your bedroom, try getting some hypoallergenic bedding for yourself, or even for your pet. Such bedding is resistant to dander, dust, pollen, mold and other allergens.
Replace carpets with wooden flooring
To the extent possible opt for wooden flooring or even tiles in rooms where it’s not going to make a major difference. Carpets are major carriers of dander as they lock it in their fibers. If you're stuck with carpets, we recommend routinely giving them a deep clean with a good quality carpet cleaner.
Besides being free of the fibers that tend to hold dander, tiles and wooden flooring also have the advantage of being easy to clean. You should, in fact, mop them every alternate day, if possible.
Mopping not only cleans up a large amount of the dander but leaves what remains dampened, and thus prevents it from floating in the air.
Using one of the best steam mops for hardwood floors can get rid of pet dander and have them shining in a flash!
You can also use a damp rag to wipe clean the walls, tables and other surfaces in the house, around twice a week if not more. Hot water rinsing helps make the rag extremely effective in cleaning the surfaces of the pet dander that tends to stick.
Buy a good air purifier
Another excellent way of keeping pet dander out of your house, and life, is to buy a good air purifier equipped with a HEPA filter to prevent allergens and dander from becoming air borne and spreading through the air.
Use anti-allergen spray
Spraying the house with an effective anti-allergen spray can also help in eliminating all remnants of dander and ensuring that your house is free of this harmful protein.
While these are regular things you can do to get rid of pet dander, other measures such as:
- repainting your house every few years;
- replacing your carpet (in case you don't switch to hard floors);
- replacing furniture fabric with leather/vinyl; and
- regular cleaning of curtains and blinds,
are also helpful toward long-term solutions to the problem.
In extreme cases, where preventive methods have failed, you may need to go for medication to treat your allergy symptoms. You can try over-the-counter drugs or opt for allergy shots as a way of giving yourself immunotherapy for lasting relief and also building immunity against dander.
But then, as we all know, prevention is always better than cure. Hence the best solution to the problem of pet dander, as well as other allergens such as mold, pollen and dust, is keeping your pet and the house as clean as possible. It does involve a lot of effort, no doubt, but the benefit that you’ll see—in the form of becoming free of allergic reactions—will more than compensate for it.