Before diving straight into the worst cat breeds for allergies, let’s first address the gray area regarding “hypoallergenic” pets. According to Science Daily, the term “hypoallergenic” pertains to the characteristic of provoking fewer allergic reactions in allergy sufferers. For this reason, you have to bear in mind that an animal being hypoallergenic doesn’t totally mean that it won’t trigger your allergies. On the other hand, it actually means that these animals just have a little less tendency to induce those reactions compared to others who aren’t hypoallergenic.
With that being said, today, we will be looking at the worst cat breeds for allergies. If you are someone with allergies and is considering having a cat for pet, avoid these breeds and just look for other ones who won’t trigger reactions from you. Always think about your safety first.
It’s said that these were originally imported from Iran into Italy. Also, another fun trivia about them is that the first Persian cat was presented at the first organized cat show in England back in 1871. These cats are characterized by their round face and short muzzle. Moreover, they are called “Shirzi cats” in the Middle East region.
Persian cats, when they are still kittens, do look like they are little balls of fur. As they grow old, they lose that cute appearance but still maintain their fluffy coat with long hair. Additionally, they do shed a lot. Consequently, these cats demand regular grooming to prevent their hair from matting as well as shedding. For these reasons, they aren’t really good for pet owners who have allergies.
York Chocolate Cats
York Chocolate cats or just Yorks have gotten their name because of their color that resembles that of a dark chocolate. It’s also referred to as a dilute form of brown.
At the same time, there are studies which say that there is a correlation between darker-colored coats and the amount of protein produced in the animal’s body. By the way, these proteins are the ones which induce the allergic reactions. Now going back, these researches strongly state that a cat that has a darker coat do create more proteins than those who have lighter-colored coats. For this reason and also because York Chocolates are average shedders, it’s just best to stay away from them if you have allergies.
British Longhair Cats
Another one of the worst cat breeds for allergies is the British Longhair cats that are the descendants of the British Shorthairs. Longhairs are the result of the breeders attempt to create something new after being so used to the Shorthairs.
British Longhair cats demand, not just regular, but frequent grooming because their coat is certainly high maintenance. Bear in mind that a cat like this, which needs to be groomed a lot of the time, will expose you more to allergens such as dander and saliva. If you are someone who has allergies, then this isn’t the cat for you. Move on and find another one!
Toygers have a tiger-like appearance. Moreover, their name is a combination of the words “toy” and “tiger.” They got that said appearance because they have been created by crossing a Bengal with other felines. There are tabby cats who look like tigers and the creation of Toygers was an attempt to bring that resemblance to tigers a little closer.
Additionally, Toyger cats’ fur is soft, dense, and indeed thick. Moreover, they moderately shed. For these reasons, you may just want to look for another cat breed since taking the risk isn’t always a good idea for people with allergies.
Maine Coon Cats
Back in the 19th century, Maine Coon cats were mousers, farm cats, and ship’s cats. They have a really dense fur. Moreover, they shed a lot and frequently. For these reasons, they can’t just trigger certain allergic reactions, but an allergy attack from people with allergies. Without a doubt, people who are prone to asthma attack shouldn’t be near these cats. For your safety, just ditch this cat and look for a cat breed that will be safe for you.
Norwegian Forest Cats
Norwegian Forest cats from Northern Europe are the ancestors of the previously mentioned Maine Coon cats. On the other hand, their ancestors are said to be brought by the Vikings to Norway back to around 1000 A.D.
Since they are originally from Scandinavia where there is a really cold winter, these cats have developed a shaggy as well as a furry coat that is indeed dense and thick. At the same time, they shed too much. For pet owners with allergies, these cats are a no-no.
Cymric (Longhair Manx) Cats
Cymrics, as stated by other cat registries, are a variation of the Manx breed, but being a little bit long-haired than the latter. These cats are known for not having a tail that is said to be a result of a mutation process that occurred because of the closed environment and small gene pool in the place where it originated.
Moreover, these cats are a bit of a 50-50 for pet owners who have allergies. Some people have allergic reactions toward them while some don’t. But with allergies in general, it may be best to not just take the risk. Just look for another cat instead. Cymric’s have a really heavy undercoat and their fur is silky as well as plush. These, obviously, require rigorous grooming. Regular grooming, on the other hand, isn’t ideal for someone like you who has allergies.
Oriental Longhair Cats
Oriental Longhair cats are the first cats in Western Europe. Besides their Siamese-style body, these cats are also known to like cuddling a lot and since they have a long hair, they aren’t the ideal pet for you. These cats don’t have a high maintenance grooming routine, but as soon as you finish grooming, lots of hair have already fallen off. Think about your safety and just ditch this cat from the list of cats you are considering.
These are heavily-boned cats with blue, copper, or green eyes. Himalayan cats are also related to Persian cats that is why you can see a resemblance in their appearance characterized by beauty. Moreover, they have just been recently put under the Persian class by some cat registries in the United States. Additionally, Himalayans have double coats that are fluffy and long that demand regular grooming. Besides, they shed a lot too. It’s certainly one of the worst cat breeds for allergies.
Exotic Shorthair Cats
Speaking of Persians again, these Exotic Shorthairs were developed as a short-haired version of the Persians. Exotic Shorthairs, just as their name implies, have short hair. On the other hand, it doesn’t mean that they aren’t a threat to pet owners who have allergies. They do shed a lot which is already an enough reason to stay away from them.
These cats, known for their pointed coat pattern, were created by crossing the Siamese and Burmese breeds. Tonkinese cats are quite tricky. Why? First, they shed moderately. It means that they can’t really have an effect on some people, but for people who are indeed sensitive, they can still be bad as pets. Moreover, Tonkinese cats that live in warmer and colder climates shed differently. Those who are in warmer climates shed just a little. However, those who are in places that are colder do shed too much. If you are considering to have a Tonkinese, weigh every factor in your situation.
These large, muscular, as well as short and fine-boned limbed cats are recognized by many cat registries around the world. Chartreux cats from France are one of those few cats with a wooly textured coat. This coat of theirs is waterproof, dense, and thick. At the same time, they shed moderately. Again, for cats who shed moderately, you have to really think about it. They may not be dangerous for pet owners who only have mild allergies, but for those who have serious allergies, these cats are already put off from the list.
Ragamuffin cats with large and cute eyes are moderate shedders. This cat is indeed one of the worst cat breeds for allergies, especially because it needs regular grooming which will just expose you more to dander and saliva.
Birman cats are also on this list of worst cat breeds for allergies despite their good looks and royal demeanor because of many reasons. First, they love to cuddle a lot. Certainly, cuddling is amazing, but if you have allergies, it may result into one of your worst nightmares. Don’t underestimate these invisible-to-the-naked-eye allergens that can be easily transferred to you, even just by a little rub here and there. Second, they have a really thick as well as a long fur that when they shed, even moderately, will result into tons of hair around. Move on and find another cat!
Scottish Fold Cats
A Scottish Fold Cat has droopy ears and large eyes. Also, their thick as well as dense fur sheds moderately. Without a doubt, this is one of the worst cat breeds for allergies. Unfortunately, it’s hard to resist adorable cats like them, but you have to resist the temptation.
Kurilian Bobtail Cats
Another one of the worst cat breeds for allergies is this one. Kurilian Bobtails are rare cats which are originally from the Kuril Islands and the Russian Island of Sakhalin. They are characterized by their intense shedding whether they have a short or a long fur. It also means that they have a really high maintenance grooming routine. For these reasons, just find a better cat that will be safer for you.
American Polydactyl Cats
Another one of the worst cat breeds for allergies is the unique American Polydactyl. This breed which has a glossy coat, that can either be short or long, sheds a lot that even a regular grooming routine will only allow you to minimize the hairs that have fallen off.
For pet owners looking for cats as pets while at the same time having allergies, experts give advice to always bear in mind that it isn’t really the length of a cat’s hair that determines whether it will be harmful to you or not. Yes, it may be a factor, but the far more important thing to look out for is their shedding. If a cat’s shedding is very frequent or that too much of its hair is falling off, that is absolutely a red flag for you!
Every animal produces dander, saliva, and just dirt in general. These are the allergens that can trigger reaction from you. However, some breeds have just a little tendency to produce those dander compared to the other breeds and that is the answer to your problem.
Remember that despite your condition, you can still make your dream to have a pet cat to come into life. You just need to be a bit more creative by thinking out of the box. Believe me, there is a cat that is meant for you. So go out there and find it. Happy searching!