Himalayan cat lovers, would you like to know if this breed is hypoallergenic?
The Himalayan cats are playful, sweet, and laid-back cats that love spending time with their human family members. They are like a perfect mix of their parent breeds (Persian and Siamese cats).
For our allergic families, we are going to explore whether this cat is allergy-friendly for your home environment. We have gone straight to the details on whether this breed can affect allergy sufferers or not.
Please read on if you want all your questions answered!
Are Himalayan Cats Hypoallergenic?
In general, the answer is no. Himalayan cats are not usually considered to be hypoallergenic though there are individual Himalayan cats which may be if they take more of their characteristics from the Siberian parent. In either case, there is always a probability of triggering allergies.
The primary reasons why the Himalayan is not generally considered to be hypoallergenic include:
- High shedding level
- Medium to high dander production rate
- Moderate Fel d1 production rate
Overall Hypoallergenic Score: 4/10
Cats have been known to cause a wide range of allergies, with the most common allergies being skin and breathing sensitivities. And the Himalayan can cause both.
How Himalayan Cats Affect Breathing & Skin Allergies
Some cats are less likely to cause certain allergies. And as mentioned, the main allergies we will focus on are skin and breathing allergies. We have rated the Himalayan for both:
Probability of Causing Breathing Allergies: 6/10
Probability of Causing Skin Allergies: 7/10
While shedding is the main cause of breathing sensitivities, people with skin sensitivities have more to consider. We will discuss more on how the other features of the Himalayan can affect allergies in the next sections.
Do Himalayan Cats Shed a Lot?
Yes, Himalayans are moderate to high shedding cats. Himalayan cats have a long thick coat that sheds continuously, especially if it takes from the Persian cat parent.
Shedding Levels: 6/10
Hair Length: 8/10
Since the Himalayans have long hairs, you will notice their fur all over your house when they start to shed!
And while they shed, the dander trapped in their coat, along with other allergens like dust and pollen, will be released in the house. Regular brushing and grooming can help you manage their shedding level and control the release of these other allergens in your home as well.
Himalayan Dander and Saliva Levels
Most of the time, you find individuals with allergies are affected by saliva, urine, and dander. That’s because these substances contain the proteins and antigens produced by cats which trigger most cat allergies.
However, since allergies depend on an individual’s sensitivities, you will be safe if you are not affected by these proteins and antigens. In most allergic individuals, especially those prone to skin allergies and contact dermatitis, that is almost impossible!
Saliva Exposure: 6/10
Dander Levels: 6/10
The Himalayans tend to release the dander and outdoor allergens trapped in their coat when they shed. And this can end up triggering breathing allergies or asthma attacks as these allergens become airborne.
As for saliva exposure, drooling is quite common in cats. In fact, most cats tend to drool when they are happy and relaxed. However, like most cats, himalayans tend to lick themselves clean and so saliva can easily become another allergen released throughout your home as they shed.
Unlike some cat breeds, the Himalayans don’t produce a low amount of feline d1 (allergy-causing protein). However, kittens and female Himalayans tend to produce less fel d1 than males.
If you are in love with this breed and want to know how to reduce allergies, please read to the end! We have some great tips in store for you.
Grooming and Coat Maintenance
The Himalayans are generally clean cats that love self-grooming. Therefore they should only be washed once every month.
However, cats won’t appreciate being washed; therefore, you should start bathing them at a very young age. Just make sure you wash them with the right shampoo that will leave their coat and skin shiny and healthy.
The monthly baths can help you manage the shedding and dander levels as well.
Ease of Grooming: 7/10
Risk of Allergen Exposure: 8/10
Grooming cats with long fur can seem overwhelming, but don’t worry. Taking care of the Himalayan is not as hard as it seems. The Himalayans have long and silky hair that mats and tangles easily. So, make sure you brush their coats every day. Regular brushing can also prevent your cat from spreading allergens around your home.
In Love With the Himalayan and Want One Anyway? Tips for Managing Allergies
The Himalayan cat is one of the most loved cat breeds on the planet; therefore, we get it!
So here are some of the best tips that can help you live peacefully with the Himalayan cat. These tips can help you reduce allergies, but living with this cat is still a risk to your health. Check out our list of hypoallergenic cats if you want to find an alternative breed that’s not as big a risk to your health.
Tip 1: Training
The Himalayans are intelligent cats that respond to their owner’s emotions and moods. The Himalayans are not dogs, but they can be easily trained, in fact, some people have trained their Himalayan to do some nifty some tricks! So teach them to:
- Not lick you
- Stay out of your bedroom
- Stay within your home’s boundaries
- Do their business in a designated area
Tip 2: Fortify the House
Since Himalayans are heavy shedding cats, you must install some allergy-fighting devices in your house. We recommend you start with the following:
- Install HEPA filters in all your cleaning devices
- Get a high-quality air purifier, also with a HEPA filter
- A high-quality vacuum cleaner with a car hair and dander attachment
- Get rid of most of the textile surfaces in the house as these can trap hair and dander
Himalayan cats have a very high probability of triggering allergies. And with the above tips, you may be able to live with a Himalayan peacefully; however, it is advisable to always have your allergy drugs near you.
One of the best methods of dealing with allergies is adopting a hypoallergenic hybrid of Himalayan which takes after the Siberian parent. However, these hybrids are not that common so you may want to explore other hypoallergenic cat breeds.