Picking a new family pet is always a tough decision with long term effects. Having a pet is a huge responsibility, especially for children. While they can help lower stress, offer companionship and even keep family members active, they can also have an effect on childhood eczema.
Pet dander is something that can trigger eczema, much like dust mites or pollen. Most people assume that getting a pet without hair or feathers is the best way to prevent a worsening of a current flare up of eczema. Some of the most popular pets tend to be the ones that cause reactions, such as dogs and cats, or smaller pets like mice, hamsters, rabbits or birds. You or your child can also be more allergic to one animal than another. In fact, being allergic to cats is two times more likely than being allergic to dogs. You should test what kind of changes there are when the person experiencing eczema is kept separated from your pet. Once you are certain the pet is triggering reactions, then you can take steps to manage them.
Of course, getting rid of your pet or isolating them entirely should be a final resort. You don’t want to treat them neglectfully. However, you can restrict where they go in certain ways. This includes not letting them on the furniture, or keeping them out of children’s bedrooms. Be sure to clean and vacuum often to wipe out any place for the allergens to settle. This will also help to get rid of dust or other things in the environment that might trigger eczema. You should also regularly clean your pet’s litterbox if they have one.
Always wash your hands after handling your pet if you find the rash condition is spreading on your hands and arms. Wearing gloves is also an option if you handle your pet often or you have to brush or wash them. When you are brushing them, be sure to do it somewhere that won’t make a mess, and be sure to clean up immediately afterwards. Washing should occur often to help rid your pet of allergens.
It is possible to have a pet even with eczema. Find ways to live comfortably with your pet by talking to a dermatologist or a veterinarian.