If you are one of those who are allergic to cats but want to keep one as a pet, fret not! There are hypoallergenic cats which are suitable as pets for people who suffers from cat allergies. In this article, we have listed down the top hypoallergenic cat breeds for those who are allergic to cats
Hypoallergenic Cat Breeds
In reality, there are no cat breeds which are totally hypoallergenic. The reason why people develop allergic reactions to cats is because cats produce dander, which is a common allergen. However, dander is not the main culprit. The main cause of cat allergies in humans is due to a certain protein called Fel d 1 which is present in a cat’s saliva and skin. Thus, those non allergic cats usually belong to cat breeds which produce less of the Fel d 1 protein. Do note that the list of hypoallergenic cat breeds are arranged in alphabetical order.
The Balinese cat may not look like the typical hypoallergenic cat as they have a luxurious coat unlike most hypoallergenic cats which are shorthair types. However, they produce less Fel d 1 protein than other cat breeds. Thus, people are less likely to develop allergic reactions to this cat breed.
The Bengal cat has a short fur coat, shed less than other cat breeds. This makes them suitable pets for those suffering from cat allergies.
The Burmese cat breed came by as a result of breeding with a female cat named Wong Wau with a Siamese cat. Thus, like the Siamese cat, the Burmese cat has a shorter fur coat than other cats. As a result, there is less shedding and dander to affect people who are allergic to cats.
The Colorpoint Shorthair cat is a close cousin of the Siamese cat. As its name implies, it has a short fur coat which means less shedding and in turn leads to less dander to spread around your home.
The Cornish Rex cat has only one layer of hair, which is the bottom undercoat of down hair as compared to the three layers that make up a cat’s fur coat. As such, this cat breed has less hair than other cat breeds which means less shedding of hair and thus less likely to cause allergic reactions.
The Devon Rex cat like the Cornish Rex has only one layer of hair, which is the bottom undercoat down hair. This cat also sheds very little hair. However, this cat breed has even less hair as compared to the Cornish Rex which makes this cat a better choice for those who are allergic to cats.
The Javanese cat like the Cornish Rex and Devon Rex cat breeds has only one layer of hair. However, the layer of hair which they have is the top coat while the other above mentioned cat breeds have the most bottom layer, the undercoat. With only a layer of hair, there is shedding and thus less dander in your house.
The LaPerm cat may not have the look of a hypoallergenic cat, but people with cat allergies are not having many problems with them. They have a unique curly coat which is thought to help reduce the spread of dander around the house.
The Ocicat may look like a wild cat breed, but it is really a 100% domestic cat breed. They are considered hypoallergenic as they produce less of the Fel d 1 protein than other cat breeds. Also, they have a short fur coat which means less shedding and dander to affect those suffering from cat allergies.
The Oriental Shorthair cat as the name implies, has a fine, short fur coat. This cat also sheds very little. With regular grooming, this cat breed is almost the ideal hypoallergenic cat breed.
The Russian Blue cat is a beautiful, striking cat with a short, but dense double fur coat. The dense double coat helps to trap the allergens close to their skin, rather than dispersing them and making people allergic. They also produce less Fel d 1 protein just like the Balinese cat which makes them less likely to cause allergic reactions in people.
The Siamese cat is considered hypoallergenic due to its short fur coat like both the Burmese cat and Colorpoint Shorthair cat. Having a short fur coat means less shedding and dander to spread around your house.
The Siberian cat is surprisingly a suitable hypoallergenic cat for those who are allergic to cats. With its long beautiful fur coat, they may not look like your typical non allergic cats. However, since they produce less Fel d 1 protein than other cat breeds, they are a good choice for those who suffer from cat allergies.
The Sphynx cat is widely believed to be the most hypoallergenic cat breed. It is very popular among cat lovers who are looking for a hypoallergenic cat as a pet. This hairless cat has no fur coat, thus there is no fur to trap allergens from its saliva. However, even without any fur, the Fel d 1 protein will still be present.
If you are allergic to cats, besides getting hypoallergenic cats, there are many things you can do to minimize the chances of developing allergic reactions. Here’s a list of things to take note of:
- Bathe your cat regularly to get rid of allergens that are stuck on the skin.
- Ensure your cat is healthy. A healthy cat will shed less and produce less dander.
- Groom your cat regularly. After each grooming session, do ensure the hair or dander are disposed properly.
- Keep your cat out of your bedrooms.
- Make sure your house is very clean. Clean and vacuum your house regularly to prevent build up of cat’s hair and dander.
- Wash your hand after playing with your cat.
As you can see, even if you are allergic to cats, you can still become the proud parent of a cat from choosing hypoallergenic cats and following the tips above.
Colorpoint Shorthair Cat Photo by Chris Wood – Public Domain
Javanese Cat Photo by Starjely – CC BY-SA 3.0
Ocicat Photo by Check-Six – Public Domain
Siberian Cat Photo by Mstachul – CC BY-SA 3.0