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Wednesday, March 12, 2014
Can my pet cause my baby`s allergy?
I am pregnant with my first baby (22 weeks) and I have a dog. both me and my husband are allergic, though neither of us are allergic to the dog. I have been adviced by most of people around me to get rid of the dog, as far as my baby is supposed to be allergic. Both me and my husband love the dog very much, and i do not want to make this choice without having a sound reaon for that. Is it true that my baby is supposed to beallergic to the dog, or is that just a mere assumption that will not necessarily come true?
If you and your husband are not allergic to the dog then it is not necessary to get rid of it. In fact, a number of studies have actually reported a protective effect against developing allergies/asthma when dogs or cats are in the home of allergic parents. At this point, it is my opinion you can keep the dog. Your child is at increased risk of having allergies if you and your husband are truly allergic but as mentioned this might be counteracted by having a pet in the home. I would just monitor him/her for chronic respiratory symptoms (wheezing, nasal symptoms) and other risk factors such as eczema over time and have him/her evaluated by an allergist if these occur.
Jonathan Bernstein, MD
Associate Professor of Medicine
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati