If you have children, then chances are there will come a point in time when they’ll ask for a pet. Dogs seem to be the most popular request, which is understandable since these animals can bring years and years of faithful companionship, love, and joy to your family. However, you need to put a lot of thought into a decision of this magnitude because caring for an animal for a lifetime takes a great deal of work and dedication. Are your kids ready for that kind of commitment? And another thing you need to consider is allergies. Childhood allergies are on the rise these days, so learning about dog allergy symptoms before bringing a pet home is a must.
There are several different dog allergy symptoms that manifest pretty quickly upon contact or even close proximity to one of these four-legged friends. Humans are most likely to be allergic to the saliva, dander (skin scales or flakes), or even urine of dogs. Some of the dog allergy symptoms to be on the lookout for in your child include difficulty breathing (which somewhat resembles an asthma attack), itchy or watery eyes, coughing, sneezing, or skin rashes. If you see any of these reactions after your child plays near dogs, then you should see a doctor or specialist immediately to confirm the problem.
While talking to the doctor about dog allergy symptoms in your child, you can also ask for advice on how to control the problem. In some instances, particularly when there is only one symptom present or if the reactions are mild, over-the-counter medications such as Benadryl might be enough to keep the problem in check and allow you to still have a family pet. But in other instances, the dog allergy symptoms might be so severe that having a pet won’t be a possibility. In that case, it’s important to talk to your child and explain what’s going on. If possible, you might want to offer an alternative pet choice, such as tropical fish, a lizard, turtle, hamster, or parrot. Your young one might be upset for a while, but will likely come around in good time.
Obviously, it’s important to look for dog allergy symptoms before bringing a cuddly little puppy into your home. You can test this out by slowly introducing your child to friendly dogs in the neighborhood (with permission, of course) or at a friend or relative’s house to see if there’s an allergic reaction or any other kind of discomfort.
Children never forget their first pet, their first true best friend. Just make sure your canine companion is memorable for the right reasons. Now that you can spot dog allergy symptoms in kids, hopefully you’ll be able to make a more informed decision about bringing an animal into your home.