There are very, very few things more heart-wrenching than being obsessed with dogs but also being allergic to them.
I decided to call up Dr. Tim Mainardi, a Manhattan-based allergist, to find out how to live with a dog if you’re allergic to them and what kind of dog I should get. (Because fuck allergies, amirite?) Here's what I learned:
1.For starters, not all dog allergies are the same. You can be allergic to their dander, their saliva, or their urine — and, sometimes, more than one of those things.
2.That means there's no such thing as being allergic to dog hair.
3.And sometimes, your "dog allergies" might not be caused by a dog at all.
4.But to clear up any confusion about what's really making you feel crappy, go to your doctor.
5.The sad truth is that there's no such thing as a truly hypoallergenic dog.
6.But if you really, really, really want one anyway, get a small dog.
7.And know the difference between a dog with "fur" and a dog with "hair."
8.So basically, the best kind of dog for allergy sufferers is a small, fluffy one.
Got that? Good! Now, some super useful advice for anyone who has a dog, wants a dog, or has to be around a dog.
9.Talk to your vet about changing your dog's diet.
10.Get a HEPA air purifier or put HEPA filters in your air-conditioning unit.
12.Deep clean your place during the day and keep your windows open, if you can.
13.Avoid buying couches and chairs made of fabric.
14.And get rid of that carpeting, while you're at it.
15.Whatever you do, do not let your dog into your bed!
16.For that matter, keep them off of your couch, too.
17.Remember that a lint brush is your best friend.
18.If you have other allergies, treat those religiously.
19.And keep antihistamines handy for flare-ups.
20.Phew! That was a lot. If you're still determined to get a dog, just know that your body won't "get used to" being around it.
21.Honestly, though, Mainardi strongly cautions against "just getting a dog anyway."*
22.But if you meet or hang out with (or own, I won't tell) a dog, you can still cuddle with it!!!