How to Get Rid of Dog Dander

Written by tiana mortimer
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How to Get Rid of Dog Dander
Australian Shepherds (Bonnie van den Born)

Dogs are considered man's best friend but what happens if they contribute to your allergy symptoms? Dog dander, not fur, is the primary cause of allergic reactions. Even the dog breeds touted as "hypoallergenic" produce dander. Dander is dead skin cells that are shed from a dog's skin. When the dog rubs or scratches itself, the dander is released into the air, where it lands on clothing, furniture, carpet and other surfaces. If you want to reduce your allergy symptoms, it is important to know how to get rid of dog dander, especially if you do not want to get rid of your family pet.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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Things you need

  • Vacuum cleaner
  • Face mask
  • Wet mop
  • Clean rags
  • Rug steam cleaner
  • HEPA air cleaner and purifier
  • Anti-allergen moisturising dog shampoo
  • Dog brush
  • Anti-allergen spray for dander control

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    Dander Removal Instructions

  1. 1

    Vacuum your home several times a week, preferably with a HEPA vacuum cleaner, which has the ability to filter out many allergens stirred up in your carpets. Use the vacuum cleaner attachments to clean your upholstery and hard floor surfaces. Wear a face mask if you are using a regular non-HEPA vacuum cleaner as they tend to disburse dander and other allergens into the air.

  2. 2

    Mop hard floor surfaces often with water or a surface appropriate floor cleaner at least twice a week. This will dampen the dander and prevent it from wafting through the air.

  3. 3

    Wipe down floor boards, walls and furniture with damp, clean rags. Use a bucket or sink full of hot water to rinse out the rags as they get dirty. This will help eliminate pet dander that settles on these surfaces, but it must be done one or two times a week to be effective.

  4. 4

    Shampoo and steam clean your carpeted surfaces and upholstery three to four times a year as this will remove dog dander that has seeped into the fibres.

  5. 5

    Invest in a HEPA air cleaner and purifier, one for each key room in your home, if you can afford it. The air cleaner and purifier has a filter that removes many allergens including dog dander from the air.

  6. 6

    Bathe your dog outside at least twice a week using cool water and an anti-allergen moisturising dog shampoo. Using a moisturising shampoo will help lubricate the dog's skin, and the cool water is not as drying as warm or hot water. Reducing skin dryness with the moisturising shampoo means your dog will produce less dander.

  7. 7

    Brush your dog daily outside to remove excess hair and shedding undercoat. Removing excess hair that traps dander will not only reduce the dander shed inside the home, but daily brushing stimulates the production of skin oils. Wear your face mask during brushing to avoid breathing in dog hair and dander.

  8. 8

    Spray anti-allergen dander control spray onto your dog's fur each day between baths. This will moisten any dander in the dog's fur coat and prevent it from being released into the air.

Tips and warnings

  • Train your dog to not jump on furniture and block access to bedrooms to reduce the spread of dander.
  • Wash your throw rugs regularly to remove dog dander. In addition, immediately remove your clothing in the laundry room after washing and brushing your dog. This prevents the spread of dog dander into other areas of your home, especially bedrooms or other rooms off-limits to your dog.
  • Please note that you cannot 100 per cent get rid of dog dander, especially if you plan to keep your pet. However, employing the dander elimination measures can greatly reduce dander's presence in your home.

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