How Long Does Cat Dander Last? (Allergy Advice)

How Long Does Cat Dander Last

Cat dander is invisible to the naked eye as it’s microscopic in size, but if you have cats you can be sure you have dander around the home.

But, how long does cat dander last and just how dangerous is it to people with allergies?

In this article, I’m going to explain why cat dander triggers allergies, how long it lasts, and how to clean it up!

How Long Does Cat Dander Last?

Cat dander is made up of tiny particles of skin that are shed from your cat’s coat. These flakes are so small that they can easily become airborne and end up in every nook and cranny of your home.

While the exact amount of time cat dander remains in the air is unknown, research suggests it can linger for several months!

This is problematic for people with allergies because even a small amount of exposure to cat dander can trigger symptoms like sneezing, coughing, and watery eyes.

Anecdotally, I know that dander can be present for weeks at least.

I say this because my brother has serious cat allergies (thankfully I do not!), I’ve seen him go places where cats have not been present for weeks and still have an allergy flare-up.

He can’t even come round my house, and if I know he’s going to be in my car I give it a hoover out just in case dander has found its way in – which it will have.

So, if you’re trying to avoid cat dander or being sensitive to someone with allergies, it’s important to clean your home as thoroughly as possible no matter how long it’s been since a cat was where you’re cleaning.

Related Here’s what cat dander looks like.

Can We Transmit Cat Dander?

Yes, we can!

If you know someone with cat allergies, you’ll need to be careful about triggering their allergies if you’ve been around your cats before seeing them.

As dander is so small and light, it can easily be carried on our clothes or in our hair without us even knowing.

If you want to be sure you’re not going to trigger any allergies, you could even take a shower and change your clothes before seeing someone with cat allergies.

The point is that dander is too small to see, and it’s airborne all around you if you have cats in your home!

How Can You Get Rid of Cat Dander?

If you want to reduce the amount of dander in your home, there are a few things you can do that should make a huge difference.

These are:

Increasing Your Cleaning Schedule

Cleaning is what’s going to make the biggest difference to how much dander you have around your home.

I’m not suggesting your home is dirty! In fact, it may look spotless – but remember, you can’t see cat dander.

So, you’ll need to increase your cleaning schedule to help reduce the amount of dander in the air.

This means regular vacuuming, mopping, and dusting.

Use An Air Purifier

Another great way to reduce dander in the air is to use an air purifier.

Air purifiers work by pulling airborne particles through a filter and trapping them so they can’t circulate around your home.

While they won’t completely remove all cat dander from your home, they will make a big difference to the amount that’s floating around.

Restrict Where Your Cats Can Roam

If you restrict where your cats can go, you can effectively create areas that are going to have a lot less dander and be easier to clean.

While this won’t stop all the dander from being present in your home and transferred around, it is going to make a big difference.

Related A closer look at cat dandruff and cat dander, differences explained.

Decluttering Your Home

Another way to reduce the amount of cat dander in your home and make it easier to clean up is to declutter.

The more stuff you have around your home, the more places there are for dander to hide!

So, by decluttering and getting rid of anything you don’t need or use, you can make a big difference.

Brush Your Cat Regularly

Finally, you can help to reduce the amount of dander in your home by brushing your cat regularly.

This will help to remove any loose hair and dander that’s present on their coat before it has a chance to fall off and float around your home.

Does Vacuuming Remove Pet Dander?

Vacuuming is one of the best ways to remove pet dander from your home, as it will suck up all the loose dander that’s floating around.

However, it’s important to remember that vacuuming alone won’t completely remove all the dander from your home.

You’ll still need to do a deep clean regularly to make sure all the dander is removed.

If you’re going to vacuum as your main line of defense, I recommend using one of the special pet hair vacuums as they have more powerful filters designed to deal with pet dander.

If you’re trying to make your home dander-free so someone with allergies can be there without having their allergies flare up, I can’t lie – it’s not easy.

Everyone’s allergies are unique and vary a lot in severity, too, so the only way to really know how much dander you have in your home is to see how badly it affects the person with allergies.

In Summary

Cat dander is microscopic and light, which means it’s easily carried around on clothes or in hair.

It’s not known exactly how long dander can last if left alone, but it’s believed to be several months.

It can be hard to get rid of all the dander in your home, but increasing your cleaning schedule, using an air purifier, and decluttering will help.


Image credits – Photo by Hector Bermudez on Unsplash


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