When you are allergic, it can be difficult to live with a cat on a daily basis. Itchy nose, irritated eyes…. Which cat to choose when you are allergic?
The cats are highly valued for their mysterious and independent character. And if there are breeds of cats of all different sizes, physiques and characteristics, are there also breeds of hypoallergenic cats?
What is a hypoallergenic cat ?
No cat is completely hypoallergenic. However, some breeds of cats produce a lower amount of allergens, they are called “ hypoallergenic cats”.
Be careful, do not confuse hypoallergenic (which minimizes the risk of allergy) and hypoallergenic (which does not cause allergy).
Fel D1 protein is present in the saliva of cats and it is the main cause of allergen. When a cat licks itself, it deposits this protein on its hair, and when the cat sheds its hair, the protein spreads and triggers allergies. Several cat breeds produce less Fel D1 protein than others.
Note: a small amount of allergens can be enough to trigger allergic reactions.
Cat breeds ideal for allergy sufferers:
the Sphynx or naked cat leaves no one indifferent. The Sphynx is a unique cat. The absence of hair reduces the risk of spreading allergens within the house.
- Lifetime : the life expectancy of a Sphynx is between 8 and 14 years.
- Height and weight : male and female weigh an average of 3 kg to 5 kg and measure 30 cm to 30 cm at the withers.
- Fur : this cat is not completely naked as one might think, it actually has very fine down.
- Physical peculiarities : the Sphynx is recognized for its physical peculiarity of being hairless.
- Health : the lack of hair makes it very susceptible to skin diseases.
The Siberian is an affectionate and loyal cat. Despite appearances, this dense, long-haired cat is a breed with low Fel D1 protein. However, its long hair is difficult to maintain, and leads to many knots.
- Lifetime : the life expectancy of a Siberian is between 15 and 20 years.
- Height and weight : a female weighs from 4 kg to 8 kg and measures from 35 cm to 35 cm at the withers. A male can weigh up to 10 kg.
- Hair : its hairs are quite long and dense, which allows it to have excellent protection against bad weather.
- Physical peculiarities : This cat stands out from other breeds for its robust and powerful physique.
- Health : the Siberian is one of the hardiest cat breeds.
The Bengal, is a cat known for its spotted coat similar to that of a leopard. It is a cat that produces little Fel D1, which makes it one of the hypoallergenic breeds. The Bengal is a very active, curious companion with a strong character.
- Lifetime : the life expectancy of a Bengal is between 10 and 13 years.
- Height and weight : a female weighs from 4 kg to 6 kg and measures from 35 cm to 35 cm at the withers. A male can weigh up to 7 kg.
- Hair : this cat has a rather short and thick coat.
- Physical peculiarities : we recognize it thanks to the atypical color and the patterns of its coat.
- Health : the Bengal can be prone to heart failure and diseases of the nervous system.
the Balinese is a very hairy cat, which needs to be brushed several times a day. Despite its thick coat, this cat produces little Fel D1 protein. With his affectionate and faithful character, the Balinese is a very sensitive cat and attached to his master.
- Lifetime : the life expectancy of a Balinese is between 10 and 15 years.
- Height and weight : a female weighs from 2 kg to 4 kg and measures from 25 cm to 30 cm at the withers. A male can weigh up to 5 kg.
- Hair : this cat has a very silky semi-long coat.
- Physical peculiarities : the coat of this cat resembles that of the Siamese breed.
- Health : the Balinese can be subject to several genetic diseases such as progressive retinal atrophy or strabismus.
The Devon rex
the devon-rex is a cat that loses little hair, which makes it suitable for people with allergies. He is a pleasant cat to live with and very demonstrative. He can’t stand loneliness and is always looking for company.
- Lifetime : the life expectancy of a Devon rex is between 15 and 20 years.
- Height and weight : male and female can weigh from 3 kg to 5 kg and measure from 30 cm to 30 cm at the withers.
- Hair : the hair of the Devon rex is very fine and short.
- Physical peculiarities : the Devon rex has large, very wide and high ears, with little hair.
- Health : With its very fine hair, the Devon Rex is particularly sensitive to outside temperatures.
Adopting an animal commits you, it is a decision that you will have to think carefully about. Do not hesitate to contact your veterinarian or the shelter closest to you before starting. They will be able to give you their advice on the breed of cat that will suit you best.