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My family has two dogs: Chi (mixed-poodle) and Dol (mixed-yorkie)

I also have mild asthma and mild dog allergies.

With Chi, I get reactions quite often. My asthma acts up and I have a difficult time breathing; I sneeze often; my nose becomes terribly itchy. So I don't hang around him too much.

With Dol, I get reactions quite rarely. I don't get any of the symptoms from Chi with Dol, but I do get itchy eyes. My eyes itch like mad and I either rub it, or sometimes manage the itch and wash my eyes with water. Although, either case, I do get a bloodshot eye. (allergy only affects one eye; not same one every time though) This one is a bit less frequent and happens once every other month or so (it doesn't happen periodically).

We've had both for six years, but I was away for university for 4 years, so I've been with them for just two. Now I am back with my parents, and I'm working on my Master's at a local university. So I haven't affected by allergies too many times. (although I was for two straight years)

I'm very close with Dol so I sleep with him all the time. Now, I love them both and I especially love Dol like crazy. But I'm wondering if I should keep my distance from them. I've always just opted to ignore the allergic reactions (especially with Dol because it doesn't happen so often) and just put up with it, but recently a visiting friend who's in medical school informed me that continuing to do so could lead to serious health consequences.

Can someone advise me on what those health consequences might be? My friend told me it might lead to blindness or worse. Now I don't know if that's true or not, but I'd like someone to explain it to me any way they can if possible.
 

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Allergies are fickle :/ worst case is they lead to serious health conditions, yes. Best case you're body build tolerance to that allergens. Seen it happen. If you're worried, you can always make sure the pups are getting their baths when they're supposed to and invest in a quality air filter to minize allergens and dandruff.
 

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Mild allergies won't affect your eyesight unless you get eye infections from rubbing bacteria into your eyes from your 'dirty' hands..... that would be a concern. The allergies from your dogs is from the dander from their skin, not the fur itself so if you bathe them more frequently to keep the dander down, it should help reduce the allergic reaction. My Nephew has very bad asthma/ seasonal allergies but by his Mom bathing his dog once a week he has cut his attacks in half! They also have air purifiers in their home!
 

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Without any treatment I've seen it go both ways. I've had a friend who built a tolerance to her dogs but would still have reactions to other dogs, and I have an Aunt who's allergies worsened over the years to the point where contact with dogs would send her to the hospital with a full blown asthmatic attack.

In your case I'd do a few things..

1. Bathe your dogs at least once a week, use a shampoo designed for frequent bathing so it does not dry out their skin and make the situation worse.

2. Dust and vacuum at least once a week,to cut down on the dander that's in the house. Make sure to vacuum the furniture if they are allowed on it.

3. Consider running an air purifier.

4. Wash your hands after handling the dogs, and until you have a chance to do so keep them away from your face.

5. Keep the dogs away from your face, no more doggy kisses on your face if you allow it since you could also be allergic to the dog's saliva.

6. No more sleeping with the dogs, in fact I'd keep them completely off your bed or better yet out of your room. Sleeping with them it's like you are constantly exposed for 7 or 8 hours to the dogs dander.

7. Consider talking to your doctor about allergy medicine, oral or shots, that can help you with your allergic reaction.
 

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I have allergies too and I have 4 dogs.
This is what helps for me (but your allergies might be worse):

- I vacuum daily
- No long haired carpets (because they hold dog hairs too well)
- No dogs in my bedroom (except for Sunday morning, because I change my seets afterwards)
- I have an air cleaning systems, which really helped me! I bought one that is approved by an allergy society

Of course, it all depends on how severe your allergies are, but I hope some of these tips can help you!

Love xx
 
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