What is an ALLERGY?

An allergy is a hypersensitivity, a misdirected response by the immune system, the body's defense against
a substance that is ordinarily harmless to most people. In people with allergies, the immune system can't
tell the difference between dangerous and harmless substances.

It is currently estimated that 15 to 20 percent of the population are sensitive to animals. With a
population of approximately 250 million in the United States, this means that between 50 to 60 million
Americans may be adversely affected when exposed.

Some types of allergies worsen over time. You might select a dog that you later develop allergies to in
any case. This is why it's very important for you to find a good allergist who will educate you about
your particular form of allergy and help you to manage it.

What is an ALLERGEN?

Substances which cause allergies are called allergens or antigens. The animal allergen is one of the
substances that trigger allergic episodes.

The dog allergens are: hair, dander, saliva, urine. The major cause of allergic reactions is dander or old
skin scales, which dogs constantly shed into the environment. Animal dander is extremely light weight
and tiny in size, (approx. 2.5 microns) and can stay airborne for hours. (1 micron = 1/25,000 in.)

Remember: the hair, fur or feathers have no allergic potential themselves. However, they may be
contaminated by dander and by salivary and urinary secretions which dry and later flake off into the
environment, becoming airborne and circulating throughout the house.

Is it a “SEPARATED” problem?

Allergies are cumulative. In other words, they build up. People also can have varying degrees of
sensitivities to different allergens. When someone is allergic to animal dander and saliva, he's probably
also allergic to other substances found in and around the house. Dust, mold, mildew, pollens, flowers,
trees, paint, perfume, soaps, cosmetics, and other substances can trigger allergic reactions. Whether a
person has symptoms or not depends on how many of these allergens are in his environment at a
particular time.

How long it takes TO DEVELOP an allergy?

Exposure plays an important role. You're most likely to develop an allergy to a substance you've been
exposed to in small doses, many times, separated by intervals. Sensitivity to a particular allergen can
take anywhere from a few days to a few years to develop. Rarely does an allergen provoke a reaction the
first time you encounter it. Every allergic person has a tolerance level above which an acute reaction
takes place.

Allergies can develop at any age. There is a greater inclination for them to start during childhood, partly
because a child's immune system is more active and sensitive than an adult's.

Is kerry a HYPOALLERGENIC Breed?

There is no group of dog breeds one can point to and say "these are hypoallergenic". People have
differing levels of allergy and allergies to different things -- sometimes it's the hair, sometimes the saliva --
although most often it's the dander. The only way for an individual to be certain he or she is not
allergic to a particular breed is to spend some time with individuals of that breed and see how he or she
reacts to the animal.

Kerry is a dog with nonshedding coat and that’s why one of the most commonly recommended breeds
for allergy sufferers. Kerry sheds its skin (called "epidermal turnover") approximately every 21 days.
When a dog's coat does not shed, there are less allergens released in the air. This is provided that the
coat is kept clean and clipped.

However, it is important to note that there are some people who can't tolerate these dogs, either!

Puppies often have different coats than dogs do, it's important to check that you are not allergic to either
kerry puppies or kerry adults.

It has been found, incidentally, that the epidermal turnover is more rapid in breeds that are prone to the
various forms of dry and oily seborrhea (Cocker Spaniels, Springer Spaniels, West Highland White
Terriers, Chinese Shar-Pei, Basset Hounds, German Shepherd Dogs, Irish Setters, Afghan Hounds,
Doberman Pinschers and Dachshunds).

How to REDUCE owner’s exposure to kerry ALLERGENS?

Being allergic doesn't mean that you can't have a kerry or that you must give up one you already have.
Even if your doctor finds that you have an animal-related allergy, don't give up your pet so quickly!

1.Talk to your allergist. A doctor who is conversant with allergies can test you and determine exactly
what it is that you are allergic to. With that established, you can plan how to reduce that particular set
of allergens, and get the most results for your efforts. Many people can also get a series of shots to
desensitize them to the allergens and also obtain effective medication for controlling asthma attacks.

2.Clean ALL surfaces thoroughly with a damp cloth or mop. Avoid using heavy carpets, large
draperies, and upholstered pieces that become collecting grounds for pet allergen.

3.Get plastic covering cases for mattresses and cushions. Use cases with plastic zippers so allergens
already inside can't get out.

4.Use non-allergic fillings, such as polyester, for beds, pillowcases, etc.

5.Use a vacuum cleaner with a High Efficiency Air Filter to trap the tiny particles of animal allergen.
The water vacuums are not effective on animal dander. Studies have show they actually increase dander
levels when in use.

6.Try to improve ventilation by opening windows and air intake vents. These steps will improve indoor
circulation and help keep kerry dander from doing all its dirty work.

7.Place a screen made of cheesecloth or other thin material over bedroom vents to keep dander from
circulating into the bedroom from the central heating/cooling system.

8.Bath your kerry weekly with high quality shampoo and conditioner. Research has shown that if a
kerry is washed and brushed frequently (not more than twice weekly) the airborne allergens are cut
drastically. This task should be done outside of the home. Be sure the shampoo you use does not dry
out kerry's skin which may worsen the problem.

9.Include Allerpet or other products to the hair care of your kerry. Allerpet was formulated to solve
these problems by cleansing the hair of the antigens that cause their sensitivities, by controlling their
dispersal into the environment, and by specially conditioning the hair and skin to reduce future

10.Keep your kerry out of your bedroom.

11.Use a room air purifier to remove airborne animal dander. The most often recommended is the
HEPA type filter.

12.Keep clothing worn when playing with your kerry out of your bedroom.

13.Be sure to always wash your hands after each time you touch or play with your kerry.

14.Wash the kerry's bedding and toys. The kerry’s bed must be vrapped in plastic cover.

15.Feed your kerry a well-balanced diet, which includes omega fatty acids, that helps reduce skin
dryness and flaking.

16.The Professional Groomer can be your best friend when it comes to helping you take care of your

17.Watch for other allergens. If you are allergic to any airborne substance, including animal dander, it's
also important to avoid other irritants like cigarette, cigar and pipe smoke, insect sprays, dust and tar
fumes. Even if you're not allergic to those substances, exposure to them could aggravate your kerry

This page was generated by Cross The Rubicon kennel.
Puppy Jade (daughter of Arlana Cross the Rubicon)