ADVERTISEMENT

Q. Should I buy a house with dogs to whom I am allergic to?

Answered by
Dr. Shyam Kalyan. N
and medically reviewed by Dr.P.C.Pavithra Pattu
This is a premium question & answer published on Jan 26, 2022

Hello doctor,

Can dog dander and urine cause severe allergic reactions such as headaches? I am thinking of purchasing a home where two dogs lived in it. I get a headache and headrush each time I go there. An odor removal specialist said they could certainly remove the smell. I also hired a mold detection expert to check for mold and other growths. I am concerned that the smell of dog dander cannot be removed while I buy the house. I may have headaches in the place I live in. I am not sure if it is good to buy the house. I have allergies to dust mites and summer grasses. I have also been taking Vitamin D, multivitamin, multimineral, and Finasteride. Could you please give me your advice on this?

Thank you.

ADVERTISEMENT
#

Hello,

Welcome to icliniq.com.

Thanks for writing in, and I understand your concern. Dog dander can cause allergies and, thereby, sinus headaches. Also, dog urine can trigger headaches due to its strong odor. Dog dander can be a severe allergen in susceptible individuals other than smell and molds. They are known to harbor a lot of dust mites on their skin. Dust mites and animal dander are very difficult to remove. They get absorbed onto furry objects, surfaces, curtains, carpets, mattresses, and pillow covers. I suggest you get a skin prick allergy test done to identify if you are sensitive to these allergens before buying the house.

Regards.

Hello doctor,

Thank you for your response.

I had a skin prick allergy test conducted earlier this year, and it showed that I am allergic to dust mites and summer grasses. The current owners of the house have two dogs. When I visited other rooms in the house which the dogs did not frequently use, I did not feel a severe allergic reaction. When I opened the windows in that house, I felt a bit better. I assume it was because some fresh air was circulating into the house. Or maybe it was psychological. If I were to buy the house, the current owners would remove furniture and furry objects from the house. I had two pet odor removal specialists and cleaners visit the house. They both were confident that removing the carpets and their cleaning services would remove the pet dander from home. They would fog the walls and the vents and take other steps to remove the odor. I am very interested in buying this house as it is my first home and it fits me well.

Do you think it would be risky to buy a house given the circumstances? I do not want to live in a house where I have allergies all the time. At the same time, if there is a high probability that the dander can be removed and the headaches will cease, then I would move forward with purchasing the house. Would you please give me your opinion on this?

Regards.

#

Hello,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

Pet animals have a lot of dust mites on their skin surfaces. They are almost impossible to get rid of until you remove the pet as well. In your case, you will do a thorough deep cleaning and odor removal, etc. The current owners will remove all the furry substances, including carpets and curtains. All this should clear off a lot of the problems there. After all the cleaning, when you move in, make sure you put a good air purifier with a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter in it.

Meanwhile, just as you called specialists to remove pet odor and dander, can you get some people to look at the dust mites problem? Dust mites, termites, ants, and cockroaches share a protein called tropomyosin, which is very allergenic. It will be great if they can do some additional cleaning after everything else you mentioned. Lastly, there is a vaccination for dust mites. We give sublingual immunotherapy, which will give you lasting immunity against dust mites.Regarding whether to buy the house or not, I think you can weigh these factors as well. I am sure your measures will remove the dog-related odor, but you are still allergic to dust mites. There are special people who can give a specialist opinion on mites and how to get rid of them before investing in a property. Please check if summer grasses are a part of the local flora. In which case, you may be benefitted by taking vaccines for those too.

I hope this helps.

Regards.

Hello doctor,

Thank you for your response.

I went to see the house again yesterday. Again, I got a head rush when I went inside, though the windows were closed. I spent about 2 hours there. The headache persisted all day yesterday, and I even woke up with a headache. The headache may be from the allergies, or it may be a somatic reaction of my body telling me it is a bad idea to buy the house, that it is a risk to buy a house that gives me a headrush while not knowing if the smell will clear. Of course, the real estate agent tells me it will clear. But also, the house inspector and the pet odor removal specialists tell me they can clear the smell. But at the end of the day, I have to live with that smell, and maybe there is a significant risk that if they cannot remove it, I will be stuck with a head rush for a long time and even painful headaches. I never got headaches in the past. The headaches, perhaps, may also be somatic, with my body telling me not to get the house. When I think of not getting the house, I get some relief from head pain. So there may be allergy headaches plus anxiety headaches. Also, I am not sure I will get the mortgage financing I need for another house, as my funding may end in a few weeks, though most likely, I will keep on getting financing availability for some time. I know some non-medical points here related to anxiety and other things, but please give me your opinion on this.

Regards.

#

Hello,

Welcome back to icliniq.com.

I get the whole picture. Now in the worst case, if you buy the house and spend a lot of money removing the odor or dust from the house, you still suffer. If you decide to sell the house, would it make sense financially? Would you still be able to make it? Considering the additional amount, you will be spending on cleaning after buying the house?

Regards.

Yes I will probably make profit. The real estate market here is growing very quickly.

I could also rent out the house, and that would pay for my mortgage expenses.
# Then, since it is making financial sense, you go ahead and buy the house. Let's proceed the way you told me. Check for immunotherapy (allergy vaccines) if the problem is bothersome even after doing everything that we spoke of. Do revert back if you need any help. Happy to help you.

Was this answer helpful?

 | 

Same symptoms doesn’t mean you have the same problem. Consult a doctor now!



Related Questions:
Have allergy problems. I always have runny nose or sore throat or excessive sneezing and coughing and cannot breathe normally.

.. understand your concern regarding cure of allergies. Unfortunately, allergy of the nose cannot be totally cured, but definitely can be prevented. I would recommend the following:1. Get an allergy skin test done; so as to identify the allergen. ...   Read full

My family has been suffering from an invisible bug bite. Please help us.

.. a few questions. Who in particular is experiencing these symptoms; yourself and who else? Do you use an air conditioner to keep the house cold or fan? When was the last time the filter was changed or the fan was cleaned? Please share the picture ...   Read full

I have allergies to wheat and milk products. Will I never be able to take it?

.. the wheal sizes for these allergens in the skin prick test? This vital detail is needed for more discussion .. ...   Read full

Also Read Answers From:

ideaComprehensive Medical Second Opinion.Submit your Case

Also Read


Monkeypox Virus - Symptoms, Diagnosis, Treatment, Complications, and Prevention
Monkeypox is a zoonotic viral disease. This virus got its name as it was first noticed in laboratory monkeys in the late...  Read more»
Tomato Fever - Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis, Treatment, and Prevention
Tomato fever is an unidentified and fast-spreading type of viral infection seen in young children. Scroll down to know m...  Read more»
Histrionic Personality Disorder - Causes, Signs, Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment
Histrionic personality disorder causes variations in the thinking ability of a person. Read this article to know more.  Read more»

Ask your health query to a doctor online?

Ask an Allergy Specialist Now

* guaranteed answer within 4 hours.

Disclaimer: No content published on this website is intended to be a substitute for professional medical diagnosis, advice or treatment by a trained physician. Seek advice from your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with questions you may have regarding your symptoms and medical condition for a complete medical diagnosis. Do not delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice because of something you have read on this website. Read our Editorial Process to know how we create content for health articles and queries.