About 10% of the population has an allergy to cats, and many of them are looking for breeds that they won’t have a reaction to. Pets that won’t cause an allergic reaction are called “hypoallergenic.” These pets are in high demand and are usually quite expensive. While there isn’t any such thing as a completely hypoallergenic animal, some come close. Unfortunately, the Savannah cat is not hypoallergenic.
Are Savannah Cats Hypoallergenic?
The truth is, no cat is hypoallergenic. The dictionary definition of hypoallergenic is something that will cause no allergic reaction, but every cat contains a protein that can irritate allergy sufferings. Even hairless breeds, like the Sphynx, can cause an allergy attack.
Cat allergies are commonly caused by a protein called Fel d 1. Fel d 1 exists in cats’ saliva and skin and spreads to their fur. It is impossible for a cat not to have this protein, and it’s impossible for them not to produce dander. Savannahs don’t shed as much as some breeds, but the protein will still be spread when the cat rubs against objects, urinates, and chews on toys.
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Best Cats for People with Allergies
There are a few cats that produce less dander and Fel d 1 than other cats. This makes these cats as hypoallergenic as a cat can possibly be.
The Javanese has a single coat, which means it has half as much fur as the average cat. This leads to it producing less Fel d 1 than your average cat.
Russian Blues not only produce less Fel d 1, but they also produce less dander for the Fel d 1 to travel on. This makes them one of the best breeds for those allergic to cats.
The Sphynx is a hairless cat, but they produce Fel d 1. However, since they don’t leave piles of hair around the house, they’re a good pet for allergy sufferers.
But what if you want a cat with a long coat? Then the Siberian is perfect. The Siberian has a long coat yet produces much less Fel d 1 than an average cat.
The Balinese, like the Siberian, have a long coat and produce less Fel d 1 than the typical cat.
If you’re looking to adopt or purchase a cat that’s hypoallergenic, the Savannah cat might not be the best choice for you. Though there is no cat that is truly hypoallergenic, there are some that come as close as they can to being so, including the Russian Blue.
It’s also important to mention that if you decide to adopt a Savannah cat anyway, it’s essential to check and see what the laws are regarding exotic pets in the county and state you live in, as it is illegal to own this type of cat in many states. Although it may take several months or longer to build up a tolerance to Fel d 1, you can get allergy shots from your doctor so you can tolerate living with a Savannah. However, your physician may recommend living without a pet if your allergy is severe.