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The Myth of the Hypoallergenic Hound

The Obamas' quest for a hypoallergenic dog looks doomed. According to a story in today's Vancouver Sun, there is no such thing.

"It is a common misconception that people are allergic to a dog's hair, and it is falsely believed that dogs that shed less will not cause a reaction," the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology said.

"However, allergies to pets are caused by protein found in the animal's saliva and skin glands which gets deposited on the hair. These proteins are carried on microscopic particles through the air as an invisible aerosol. When inhaled, they trigger reactions in allergic people. As all dogs secrete these proteins, there is no allergy-free dog."

Will these tiny airborne truths dash our dreams of Tramp slurping spaghetti in the Oval kitchen?

Lisa Wogan lives in Seattle and is the author of, most recently, Dog Park Wisdom. lisawogan.com
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Submitted by Scott | November 17 2008 |

Yep hypoallergenic should not be confused with allergy free, just means less dander. Any update on the new presidential pooch?

Submitted by Renton | November 19 2008 |

Great post! I thought I was allergic to dogs, which was utterly depressing because I LOVE dogs. Well anyhow, as it turned out I was only allergic to crappy pet stain and odor removers like natures miracle and simple solution. I didn't realize this until my neighbor gave me a bottle of Get Serious. The stuff is amazing, and works super quickly. It saids on the bottle that it "extracts" pheromones so as to prevent the re-marking cycle. Its just awesome...

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