Indoor allergies: should I bathe my cat?

ShouldIBatheMyCat

Content provided by www.HealthBytesNYC.com

This is the second in a series on indoor allergies—of which cats are common culprits. For people allergic to cats, the major allergen (substance that causes an allergic reaction) is found in the cat’s saliva, urine and dander (dried flakes of skin).

How can I reduce cat allergen in my house?

The most effective way is to rid the house of the cat. This is not acceptable to most people, and after pet removal, the allergen will remain in the house for 6 months or more. The second choice might be to keep the cat outside, which is not possible in certain climates. And, if the outdoor cat is played with, the sticky allergen makes its way into the house anyway.

What about bathing my cat?

Studies have shown that washing a cat can reduce the amount of allergen on it (the allergen is mostly in cat saliva, and is transferred to the fur by licking). Based on scientific studies, twice weekly washing would be required—and a lot of rinsing, too—so this is not very feasible, nor favored by cats. Perhaps a Cleopatra-style bath (milk bath) would be acceptable to the cat!

What are some other options to reduce cat allergen?

• Removing reservoirs for the allergen, such as carpets, sofas and other upholstered furniture
• Using vacuum cleaners with effective filtration systems
• Installing HEPA-type air filters in rooms, particularly the bedroom
• Increasing ventilation in the house

Is there anything else I can do?

I like to recommend making the bedroom (where we spend most of our indoor time) a “cat-free zone.” After the room is closed off to the cat, it should be cleaned thoroughly, including damp mopping the sticky allergen off the walls, and cleaning window treatments and bedding. After this cleaning, the cat cannot reenter the room (ever), otherwise the allergen level will increase. This means the door to the room needs to remain closed at all times. But, cats are sneaky, so this is not so readily accomplished.
Stay tuned for more information on indoor allergies.

To find an allergist who is right for you, please call the Physician Referral Service at 1 (866) 804-1007 Monday through Friday, 9 am to 5 pm.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Brooklyn man charged in roommate's stabbing death

A Brooklyn man accused of violently stabbing his roommate to death on Monday is in police custody and faces murder charges.

International

Dinosaurs could have survived asteroid strike

It turns out there is a good and a bad time for the planet to be hit by a meteor, and dinosaurs were just unlucky.…

National

OkCupid admits to Facebook-style experimenting on customers

By Sarah McBrideSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - OkCupid, a top U.S. matchmaking website, intentionally mismatched users to test its technology, the IAC/InterActive Corp service said on…

Local

MTA fares still increasing 4 percent in newly…

The agency said the 4 percent increases, previously announced in December, will remain steady even as the MTA deals with increasing labor costs.

Movies

Interview: Brendan Gleeson on the way 'Calvary' depicts…

Brendan Gleeson talks about how his new film "Calvary" began over drinks and how his character here is the opposite of the lead in "The Guard."

Movies

'Get on Up' producer Mick Jagger on the…

Mick Jagger, a producer on the James Brown biopic "Get on Up," talks about the time had to tell the singer some bad news and his favorite JB record.

Television

'Glee' star Lea Michele to appear on 'Sons…

"Glee" star Lea Michele has been confirmed as a guest star in the final season of "Sons of Anarchy."

Television

TV watch list, Monday, July 28: 'The Bachelorette'…

See Andi Dorfman make her big choice on tonight's 'Bachelorette' finale.

MLB

Angelo Cataldi: Ryan Howard deserves better from Phillies

Just last week, Ryan Howard endured the embarrassment of a benching that was inevitable, and yet still shocking.

NFL

Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.

NFL

Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”

MLB

Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.

Travel

Glasgow: Hey, hey, the gangs aren't here

This European city has done a good job getting rid of its more violent residents and revitalizing with artists.

Education

Babson College tops list of best colleges for…

Money magazine has just released its inaugural list of "The Best Colleges for Your Money" -- and the answers have surprised many. Babson College, which…

Education

NYC teens learn how to develop apps during…

Through a program sponsored by CampInteractive, the high schoolers designed their own community-focused apps.

Tech

The Ministry of Silly Walks app is both…

Monty Python have dug into their back catalogue for cash-ins once more, but with the Ministry of Silly Walks app, they've made something that's fun too.