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Dogs Keep Allergies at Bay

Dogs Fend Off Allergies

If you've ever considered adding a furry friend to your family, I've got a good argument for you to do so.

A recent study published in the European Respiratory Journal examined 9,000 children and found:

Children growing up with a pet trains the immune system to be less sensitive to potential triggers for allergies like asthma, eczema and hay fever.

To see what the lead researcher had to say,


Joachim Heinrich of the National Research Centre for Environmental Health in Munich said:

Our results show clearly that the presence of a dog in the home during subjects’ infancy is associated with a significantly low level of sensitization to pollens and inhaled allergens

So go to your local pound and pick out a pup to bring home to baby. Your family will get more than a new best friend.


Join The Conversation
bluesarahlou bluesarahlou 9 years
And like PetSugar...I worked at my previous job for 8 years, and I never called in sick. The only times I missed school was when I injured myself (I was a bit of a clumsy kid :) )
bluesarahlou bluesarahlou 9 years
I grew up with lots of animals and I've never had allergies of any kind. I also grew up with little to no health insurance and my body got over the majority of my minor illnesses (colds and such) on its own. I rarely get sick as an adult, I've never (knock on wood ;) ) come down with the flu, and I can't remember the last time I had a cold. I definitely believe my strong immune system developed because of my exposures as a child.
Pets Pets 9 years
Woohooo! Dare I mention I never missed a day of school for being sick EVER ... either I have a crazy immune system or it's my love of animals!
kikidawn kikidawn 9 years
I just read this to my boyfriend and he had a good point. Bare with me as I try to explain this :) He said that allergies are just a defect in your immune system and that it thinks pollen etc. are invaders ... diseases, so the immune system attacks the invaders and you get allergies. So if living with a dog suppresses your immune system for allergies does it suppress it for actual potentially harmful viruses or diseases (like the flu or infection)? Very interesting point I thought ... :)
CoconutPie CoconutPie 9 years
My brother and I were raised with a dog and a cat in the house and he has asthma and I have big eczema and hay fever problems as well as tons of allergies. I guess it doesn't work for everybody.
Aimeelo Aimeelo 9 years
I grew up with all sorts of animals and I have the worst allergies, especially to cats. I think it is more in your genes, I take after my dad who has bad allergies as well, and my bro takes after my mom, no allergies, no nothing. Lucky. : )
kiwitwist kiwitwist 9 years
Great news!
kikidawn kikidawn 9 years
Wow that's awesome! Definitely going to keep this in mind when we have a kid ... (we'll probably have a dog first anyways lol)
lawchick lawchick 9 years
this is great news, b/c we have two cats and a dog, and want a baby!
schnappycat schnappycat 9 years
Yep, my husband is a pulmonologist (who works with allergists) and has been telling me for years how good it will be for our children because we have a cat. Now that I have a baby, I certainly don't worry if cat hair gets in his face or his stuff because I know it's actually beneficial.
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