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How Do Pets Affect Indoor Air Quality?

October 9, 2015

Furry friends make great companions! It is estimated that 70% of households in the United States are home to either a dog or a cat. While there are numerous health advantages to owning a pet, animals can adversely affect the indoor air quality of your home. Pets can trigger allergy symptoms and introduce other airborne irritants into your home. This article provides some helpful tips to ensure your indoor air quality stays at a healthy level for you and your pet!

An estimated 10-15% of Americans are allergic to pet dander. While you and your family may not be allergic to your pet, it is important to remember this statistic when you are welcoming guests inside of your home. Pet dander can easily become airborne and it will accumulate on the surfaces of furniture and flooring. Common pet allergy symptoms include: sneezing, watery eyes, rashes, and general respiratory discomfort. Always forewarn guests that your home is pet friendly in advance. Some people allergic to pets can take allergy medication to experience mild or no symptoms when exposed to animal dander. Others may need to decline an invitation in order to avoid triggering allergy and asthma symptoms.

What can you do to keep your indoor air quality healthy while sharing your home with a furry friend?

 

#1 Keep your home clean

Vacuum your home frequently with a HEPA filtered model. Make sure you use your attachments and vacuum the surfaces of sofas and other furniture often. Clean hard surface flooring with a microfiber cloth which will pick up any pet dander that may have accumulated on flooring. Make sure your home has adequate ventilation and change your air filters regularly. Purchase an air purifier for the main living areas in your home.

 

#2 Bathe your pet regularly

Even if you are not allergic to pet dander, pets that go outdoors can bring in allergens and dirt into your home. Dog hair can attract other indoor allergens like pollen, mold spores, and dust. By bathing your dog regularly, you can reduce the amount of allergens that are introduced into your home air. Brushing your dog daily will also help reduce the amount of dust and allergens that attach to your pet’s coat. Make sure you vacuum the area after brushing your pet.

 

#3 Let your furry friend sleep in their own bed

Purchase a comfy pet bed for your dog or cat to sleep in. Studies have shown that people who sleep with their pets get less sleep than those who do not. Pet dander and other allergens attached to your dogs fur and can make their way into your bedding. You will want to keep your bedroom air as healthy as possible in order to get a good night’s sleep.