Hypoallergenic Cat Breeds
The term "hypoallergenic" refers to something that is less likely to cause an allergic reaction. To understand what a hypoallergenic cat breed is, let's first look at what causes people to be allergic to cats.
Contrary to popular belief, it is not cat hair itself that causes an allergic reaction, but rather a protein found in cat saliva, urine and dander. This protein, called Fel d 1, is transferred from the cat's saliva to the cat's coat when a cat grooms itself.
Dander is minute flakes of skin cells that can be found on the cat's coat. The protein Fel d 1 stick to these flakes and become airborne, causing an allergic reaction when inhaled.
Symptoms of cat allergies can include red, itchy eyes, coughing and sneezing, a rash or hives and redness around the area where a cat has licked or scratched a person.
There are no non-allergenic cat breeds. There are however cat breeds that produce less of the protein Fel d 1, making them a good choice for someone looking for a hypoallergenic cat breed.Below is a list of these different cat breeds.
Even though it is a long haired cat, the Balinese cat breed produces less of the Fel d 1 protein, making an allergic reaction less likely.
The Bengal cat breed has short, dense fur that does not shed much or require much grooming. As a result, less of the allergen is distributed and less dander is shed.
The Cornish Rex
Rex cat breed has only a soft undercoat of down hair instead of the
usual three types of hair that make up a cat's coat. As a result,
the Cornish Rex does not shed as much dander.
The Devon Rex
The Devon Rex has a similar coat to that of the
Cornish Rex which means that less of the protein Fel d 1 is shed.
The La Perm
The La Perm cat breed has a unique curly coat
and because they tend to shed less, there is less dander that can cause
The Oriental Shorthair
Oriental shorthair cat breeds all have a very short, fine coat with
minimal shedding which makes them an ideal feline companion for someone
with cat allergies.
The Russian Blue
Russian Blue Cat Breed produces less of the protein Fel d 1 and
therefore someone suffering from allergies could potentially have a
less severe reaction to this stunning cat breed.
Siberian Cat Breed is known for its luxurious, thick coat and would
probably be the last cat breed to think of when considering a
hypoallergenic cat breed. The reason this different cat breed is
on the list is because the Siberian produces less of the Fel d 1
not surprising that the Sphynx cat breed is on the list of
hypoallergenic cat breeds. It's a misconception though that
Sphynxs cats are hairless. Instead, they have what is called down
hair - soft, peachy fuzz that gives them the appearance of being
"naked." The only reason that the Sphynx cat breed could be
considered a hypoallergenic cat breed is because this breed needs
regular baths to keep their skin in good condition. This prevents
the build-up of dander and could cause less of an allergic reaction in