Sphynx cats are hairless with large ears, and an even bigger personality. They are the product of a natural mutation. Sphynx cats do shed.
Are Sphynx Cats Hypoallergenic?
Many people are interested in whether a cat sheds, because they are allergic to cats. Technically, you are not allergic to the cat’s fur, but to proteins in cat’s dander (Fel d1 protein) and saliva (Fel d4 protein). However, cats that shed less seem to spread fewer of these allergenic proteins, which can reduce your allergic symptoms. Sphynx cats are considered by experts to be hypoallergenic.
Hot Water Removes Allergens Best
Even though Sphynx cats are considered hypoallergenic, this does not mean that they produce no allergens. Experts suggest washing blankets, covers, clothing and anything your Sphynx cat comes into contact with or where its dander can land at 140 degrees Fahrenheit (60 C) twice a month. According to PetMD
, a study showed that washing in 140 degrees F (60 C) killed 100% of the dust mites. In addition, washing at this temperature removed 90% of dog dander and 97% of pollen. While washing in 36 C (104 F) only killed 60% of the dust mites. This milder temperature also only removed 60% of dog dander and 69% of pollen.
Best Air Purifier for Pet Allergies and Asthma
Many people also suggest a HEPA room air purifier to relieve allergies caused by your Sphynx cat. Interestingly, one study showed in a double blind test conducted over a month that HEPA room air purifiers had little or no effect on the subjects’ allergy symptoms. If you want to read the study, CLICK HERE
This result seems counter intuitive. If you doubt the results of this study and you want to know what air purifier is best for cat allergies. According to my research, the best air purifier for cat and dog families is Alen BreatheSmart Classic Fur Family SmartBundle with Allergen-Reducing Air Purifier
(Amazon Link), however this Air Purifier is very expensive and given the questionable effectiveness of air purifiers for allergies, I personally would choose the Winix HR900, Ultimate Pet.
Winix HR900, Ultimate Pet 5 Stage True HEPA Filtration Air Purifier, 300 Sq. Ft
This air purifier uses a five stage filtration system that includes:
True HEPA Filter
Activated Carbon Filter
According to Winix, this air purifier“captures 99. 97percent of airborne pollutants, pet dander and allergens as small as 0.3 microns.”
The activated carbon filter and the “PlasmaWave Technology” also reduce pet odors. The PlasmaWave technology is essentially an ionizer that creates both negative and positive ions to break apart odor causing molecules. In addition, when the ions attach to dander and other particles it allows them to be filtered out with a simple electrical gradient.
This filter also has three sensors that detect if there is a large amount of pet dander or pollen in the air. When a high concentration of these contaminates is detected, it automatically switches the air purifier into a high volume cleaning stage, which quickly removes these contaminates.
I have owned air purifiers to cut down on allergens and my personal opinion is that the study sited above is correct. However, I do suggest having an air purifier in modern office buildings.
These buildings recycle the air and do not allow you to open a window for fresh air. I chastised an architect about this once and she told me that this was a building code requirement. Supposedly, this is for fire protection. The likelihood of a fire in a modern office building is very low, perhaps less than a once in 30 year possibly, but the desire and I would say need for fresh air is at least 20% of the days in a year. Anyway, because these buildings just recycle the air, they spread virus and other germs throughout the building. A good air purifier should reduce these and also any smells from other parts of the building.
Should You Give Your Cat a Bath?
Unlike other cats, your Sphynx cat will need regular baths.
When you are giving your Sphynx cat a bath, these tips may be helpful:
1) Make sure the bath water is warm. This will make the process less shocking for both of you. However, be sure the water is not too hot.
2) Place a rubber mat in the tub or sink so that your Sphynx cat does not slide around. This scares the cat.
3) Use sturdy rubber gloves. If your Sphynx cat decides it does not like the bath, the gloves will protect your hands from being scratched.
5) Have pitcher or a spray nozzle to rinse your Sphynx cat off.
6) Have a large towel ready to dry off your cat.
You may also want to have some cotton balls around to clean your Sphynx cat’s ears.
Bathing Your Sphynx Cat to Reduce Your Cat Allergy Symptoms
When you give your Sphynx cat a bath, pick a shampoo designed for this purpose. Such a shampoo should be gentle and not disturb your cat’s skins PH level.
Best Cat Shampoo for Human Allergy Sufferers
From my research the best cat “shampoo” is:
Pro Pet Works All Natural Organic Oatmeal Pet Shampoo Plus Conditioner
This product is highly rated by reviewers on Amazon. It contains oatmeal and aloe that are proven to be gentle on the skin and to moisturize skin, which reduces dander.
What is the Best Antihistamine for Cat Allergies?
While the above measures should help with your allergic reaction to your Sphynx cat, there may be times when you need additional help. Based on my personal experience with allergies the best antihistamine for general use is Zyrtec CLICK HERE to view on Amazon
) I found Zyrtec the most effective antihistamine without making me drowsy.
If you have a severe allergic reaction, then Benedryl (CLICK HERE to view on Amazon
) is what most doctors suggest. However, be aware that Benedryl is likely to make you tired and can impair your motor skills.
Another common suggestion is steroid nasal sprays such as Flonase (CLICK HERE to view on Amazon
). My personal experience with Flonase and similar products is that they provided very little additional relief, however everyone will react differently.
When none of these provide enough relief, most experts suggest getting a skin prick test. This will identify the allergens that are affecting you. With this information, your doctor can prepare allergy shots to desensitize you to these allergens, which can include cats.
I had this done and tested to be allergic to almost everything. I took allergy shots for four years. I found some relief after the first six months of the allergy shots, but very little effect after that. So I personally, cannot recommend this path.
Cat Diet to Reduce Your Allergy Symptoms
Since it is the dander and the saliva that are causing your allergic reactions, it may make sense to feed your Sphynx cat food that reduces the amount dander she produces.
Fortunately, this is essentially the same diet that is best for your Sphynx cat’s health. I have written an extensive article on what to feed your cat in my article, What Should I Feed My Cat?
The essence is that your Sphynx cat needs plenty of good animal proteins and fats. In addition, supplementing with fish oil or other omega 3 oils can help. Also avoid feeding your Sphynx cat too much dry food, which can dehydrate her.
Best Human Diet to Reduce Your Cat Allergies
There is a hypothesis that allergies and a number of autoimmune diseases are caused by a ‘leaky gut’. The ‘leaky gut’ idea is a bit controversial. Despite this a number of doctors are reporting good results treating allergy issues and autoimmune disease with ketogenic diets and even carnivore diets. Both are very similar to the best diet for your Sphynx cat as I describe in my article, What Should I Feed My Cat?
One potential issue, with the Standard American Diet (SAD), is that many people do not react well to modern strains of wheat, which have proteins not found in older varieties of wheat. In addition, too many carbohydrates cause metabolic syndrome, which seems to increase allergic reactions. Of course everyone is unique.
In my case, I think my allergies have gotten much better from eating a more ketogenic diet. It may be worth a try, if standard measures are unable to control your cat allergies.