Is Your Dog’s Bed Making Him (and You) Sick?
When your dog’s eyes itch, his nose runs, he sneezes and gets a skin rash the last thing you probably suspect as being the possible source of his allergy symptoms, would be his bed. But surprisingly, his bed could very well be the source.
Unless you frequently and thoroughly wash his bed, it can harbor allergens resulting from an accumulation of bacteria and dirt. Pet health experts concur that bed filling is the ideal shelter for house mites and dirt and the source of allergies if your pooch has used it for a while.
If It Triggers Your Allergies It May Trigger Your Pet’s Allergies — It is possible to choose a bed made of fabric less likely to attract and trap allergens such as mold, mildew, dust mites and bacteria. For me, this brings to mind how I have to carefully select down-alternative pillows so that my allergies aren’t triggered. So the concept is the same when choosing a bed for your pet. Just keep in mind that the bed’s filling may have been treated with flame retardants, known to trigger allergies, too.
Choose Hypoallergenic Beds — Pet allergy experts also recommend pet beds made from cotton, hemp or tightly woven microfiber fibers to reduce allergens. Hypoallergenic dog beds, such as those made from orthopedic memory foam, tend to generate fewer allergic reactions. Dense foam mattresses are more resistant to house mite dust. Easy-to-clean fabrics that are free from chemicals and allergens, including dust, dirt, fleas, dander and mold are recommended by veterinary dermatologists.
Change Out Your Dog’s Bed Yearly — Allergy symptoms will increase as germs and bacteria proliferate. Pet beds older than one year offer the perfect environment for allergens and can worsen skin sensitivities, say pet health experts. And choosing machine washable covers that can be washed weekly will go a long way to keep allergens at bay.
Routinely cleaning your dog’s bed and washing its covering once a week will go a long way to protecting her/him from allergies. However, if your pooch experiences severe allergies you should consult his veterinarian right away.