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Allergic to your pets?

Many of us suffer from allergies.  Everyone in our house does but living WITHOUT our pets is NOT an option.  We figure it is a small price to pay for the joy and love they give us. 
We have found that constant exposure to them actually makes the allergies more bearable. When Bruce and I married, almost 27 years ago, his allergies were horrendous, but being around all my critters reduced his symptoms considerably over time.
We have implemented ways around our house to help control the allergens.  We have tile floors instead of carpet, we use blinds instead of curtains, change our heater and air conditioning filters regularly as well as vacuuming regularly, cover fabric furniture with blankets that can be washed easily as well as changing the bedding often.  We keep our bed quilts covered in sheets so they don't have to be washed as often as the sheets and the dogs can still visit with us on the bed.  We also use our Scunchi Steamer on everything...especially the bed, bedding & pillows.  We feel very fortunate that our allergies are not as bad as some people.  We know how horrible it is for some folks.
The American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology offer the following tips to reduce indoor allergen levels for sensitive adults and children:
  • Use tile, hardwood floors and polished stone.  Carpeted floors acccumulate 100 times more cat allergens than hard floors.
  • Limit or remove fabric-upholstered furniture. 
  • Wash bedding and curtains frequently.  Wash items in 140 degrees Farenheit with one rinse; wash at any temperature with 2 rinses or use a steam washing machine.
  • Put tighly woven coverings on all bedding.  Protective coverings for mattresses, box springs and pillows are often recommended, and studies show that tightly woven fabric with openings less than four microns wide can reduce allergens.
  • Regularly change your home's HVAC filter.  Install a new pleated MERV 12 rated filter every three months. 
  • Vacuum when the allergic person is not home.
  • Keep pets out of the bedroom.
  • Practice good hygiene habits.  After petting or playing with a pet, wash hands with soap and warm water.
  • Wear a face mask for doing chores like cleaning litter boxes or grooming pets.