Cat allergy is one of the most common allergies, and it is unfortunate since we know that bringing a cat into your home can be impossible to resist, even when you are allergic to them.
Not everyone knows about “hypoallergenic cats” which is what makes them a good choice for these cases.
Ragdoll cats, for example, are one of the most famous breeds not only because of their calm nature but also because of their soft and tattered fur coat. But are Ragdoll cats actually hypoallergenic? Are there really hypoallergenic cats? In this article we tell you everything you need to know about it.
Are Ragdoll Cats Hypoallergenic?
Short answer: no, but they are still a good choice for people with allergies.
The reality is that no cat is truly hypoallergenic, and unfortunately, no, ragdolls are not hypoallergenic cats, but there is good news for you, because you can still have a ragdoll at home keeping you company.
What Makes a Ragdoll Not Hypoallergenic?
There is a protein in the saliva of most cats that is responsible for many people’s allergies to cats.
The main allergen in cats is Fel d 1. Fel d 1 is a protein produced by saliva, skin, and urine, and is transferred to the cat’s coat because of its constant grooming instincts, and then when the cat sheds fur, this protein is all over the house via the dead hair shed.
All cats produce this protein, particularly males who produce more than females, especially if they are not neutered.
So no cat is 100% hypoallergenic, but Ragdolls have the advantage that they shed less hair thanks to their fur, so there will be less hair on the floor and in the air.
This is because Ragdolls do not have an undercoat, they shed less than other breeds, therefore, without this undercoat, a Ragdoll cat is practically hypoallergenic.
As this undercoat is responsible for the cat’s shedding and consequently its owner’s allergies, as such, this cat practically does not shed.
But also, much depends on the allergies you may have and the response to the cat’s coat.
Anyone with cat allergies should be aware that they may have difficulty bringing a ragdoll into their home, although potentially not as much as with other breeds.
Reduce Allergic Symptoms From a Ragdoll Cat
Although their fur is abundant, this breed of cat’s shedding is moderate and that is an advantage that with a little extra care you can reduce allergies even more.
Will help to reduce the degree of shedding considerably. Especially in the spring and autumn season when shedding is more common.
And although the coat of this breed is soft, it is also long and thick and needs special brushes with pins and bristles.
All this regular brushing will also decrease the chances of your cat swallowing hairballs.
You can bathe your cat once a month and if you have a ragdoll kitten you can get him used to monthly showers from a young age to reduce allergies and get him used to baths.
He needs to keep the litter box clean, and that through the urine as he also expels this protein, so manipulating his litter box can also produce an allergic reaction.
There are cat foods that reduce the allergens in their hair and dander up to 47%.
This significantly reduces the presence of this allergen in their saliva and as a consequence reduces the symptoms of allergic people with whom they live.
Neutering / spaying
The Fel D1 protein is carried out due to the stimulation of a number of hormones, including testosterone. By neutering male cats, testosterone levels are reduced and they will generate a lower amount of allergen.
With female cats something similar happens, another stimulant is a hormone called progesterone, which is produced by female cats during the ovulation period, so neutering them would also reduce the amount of Fel D1.
Medications and natural remedies for cat allergies can help you relieve symptoms. Your doctor may recommend taking regular antihistamines or decongestants as symptomatic treatment for your cat allergy.
How Do I Know If I am Allergic to Cats?
You can try to spend time with a friend’s or relative’s cat, without hugging or petting it, and analyze your reaction or possible symptoms, such as itching, watering, sneezing, nasal congestion, scratchy throat or mouth, etc.
If the discomfort lasts for more than 14 days, it is very likely to be an allergy.
Can I Adopt a ragdoll If I am Allergic?
It all depends on you and your allergy levels. But if you feel you can handle it with proper care, home cleaning is essential to alleviate the symptoms and avoid the presence of allergens in the air. This way you can keep this wonderful cat at home with you.
However, they still shed, so anyone with cat allergies should be aware that they may have difficulty bringing a ragdoll into their home, although potentially not as much as with other breeds.
How long does it take for cat dander to disappear?
If you move to a new place where there were cats, it can take 20 to 30 weeks before the allergens are completely eliminated from the environment. We have an article where we explain the difference between dandruff and dander.
Are Sphynx cats hypoallergenic?
No, but like the Ragdoll, they also have their advantages, being a hairless cat, it hardly licks itself and does not release Fel D1 protein. So it is one of the most recommended options.
But… this breed would also need frequent baths to clean its skin and its ears need special care.
Ragdoll cats are not hypoallergenic
Although we would love it to be true, no cat is really hypoallergenic, not even hairless cats or shorthair cats.
But ragdolls have a coat that gives them an advantage in these cases. So if you are a cat lover and really want to enjoy the company of a ragdoll, you should know your level of allergies, know if you can deal with it and maintain a proper cleaning and feeding routine, and of course consult a doctor about your particular case.
Photo by Erik-Jan Leusink on Unsplash.