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Cats and allergies - advice please

I became allergic to quite a few things but including cats about sixteen years ago.  It followed a long stay in hospital.  I was and raised in the country and have often been told I can't be allergic but I am.

Various experiments of sniffing visiting various pet owning homes and sniffing various cats belonging to friends have taught me the following;

1. It amuses peoples although the cats' reactions range from disgust to "oh, the can opener is showing me love".
2. Houses without wall to wall carpets mean I'm less likely to have a reaction.
3. Shorter haired cats (Buzz, Ish, Horus, Lester) are better which runs contrary to advice I've found on the net.
4. Boy cats seem easier which again is contrary to advice I've found on the net.
5. I sometimes react to maine coons and sometimes to other long haired cats but recently didn't react to a long haired cat but that was at a wooden floored house.
6. Abyssinians seem to cause no problems.(Ish & Potchka)

So I'd love a Norwegian Forest Cat.  Am I dreaming?

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Thats a really odd mix of cats to react to. Skogskatts are utterly splendid - I'd love one - but if you can't cope well with Maine Coons, then I'd be wary.

We had a long haired Siamese, Eskarina, who brought people out in hives who weren't actually allergic to cats - terrible creature (in so many ways).

Bengals can be good for allergies. You could always come and view our Tribe of five - two Bengals, one Burmilla, two splendid moggies.

Have broken out the icon of the late and very much lamented Mad Aliss, our Maine Coon, in recognition of a cat-related post :)

I think I need to visit a Skoggie breeder to check but I would love one. Major_clanger is a little unsure as he thinks they are the size of lions.

The breeder I got my cats from (Burmese) was happy to allow people into her home to meet/interact with the cats/kittens before choosing, or just to discover if their allergies acted up in the presence of that particular breed. So it might be worth looking into local breeders of various types and seeing if any will allow to you explore your limits. If you're in a room with 7 kittens and 13 adult cats, you should find out pretty quickly if you're allergic!

Burmese, Orientals, Rexes and certain other breeds (I think including Abyssinins) are supposedly 'less allergic' to some people. Generally, if the coat is different in texture to the usual moggie (silky, curly, etc) there's a chance you might be ok. However, there are apparently 7 different things that one can be allergic to - fur, saliva (dries on the fur after cleaning then gets into the air), dander (ie skin flakes), and the rest I don't know. So it might not be fur you have a problem with, in which case the length/type of fur might not be an issue (except inasmuch as it might affect the distribution of other allergens like dander and saliva).

You can become 'acclimatised' to a particular cat if you live with it. There are also sprays and wipes (no, seriously!) you can use on your pet to reduce allergens - one I know of is called something like 'petal clense'. Sounds wrong to me, but a woman who nearly gave away her pair of Burmese (to me) because of allergies swore by it.

Thanks for the chemical advice. I think I just need to try out various cats. I may end up going to local breeders as the only consistent trigger is carpets. It seems to be a case of try before I finally decide.

Try this.

The late Zil was Hyperallergenic Cat no. 1 so you should be sneezing just from the photo.

PS Leicester asks me to point out that he's not Lester. His first name is Red.

Leicester, my apologies. And thank you for allowing me to sniff you. I was also very impressed by your hunting displays.

Ish points out that he is, in fact, an Asian and not an Abyssinian. He feels strongly about this.
Norwegian Forest cats are very similar to Maine Coons. I would see if you can visit a breeder or some such and see how you get one, because they may make you sneeze.

Apologies Ishkender, I will now correctly classify you.

Out of interest, were you allergic to the trio (all Maine Coons, all girls)?

Yes I was I'm afraid but a not a huge amount.

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