Cat dander is a known allergen that causes respiratory problems such as allergic rhinitis and seasonal asthma. But there’s another reason we should be concerned: the air we breathe may contain cat hair too!
According to the American Lung Association (1), cat hair can be an irritant and may become trapped in the lungs.
Cat allergies are especially common during the winter months when people come into contact with more allergens like pet dander and dust.
Is Cat Hair Dangerous to Inhale?
A common misconception about cats is that their fur is not harmful to humans because it’s made from keratin, the same material that human hair and fingernails are made of. But this isn’t actually true – cat hair can be dangerous to inhale because it contains a number of allergens including pollen, dust mites, animal dander, mold spores, and bacteria.
It’s common knowledge that cats shed a lot of hair.
How is cat hair dangerous for the human body?
Cat hair can be dangerous to your health, but not in the way you might think. Cat dander is a major allergen that is found on cat fur and skin cells. When cats groom themselves, they spread these allergens around their environments such as furniture and floors.
These particles are so small that they can become airborne and make their way into your home’s air duct system where you would be breathing them in every day.
The most common symptoms of cat allergies are runny nose, itchy eyes, sneezing, or trouble breathing; however, some more severe reactions could cause asthma attacks or even anaphylaxis (a sudden onset allergic reaction).
- Cat fur consists of two layers – the outer layer and the undercoat.
- The outer layer is comprised mostly of guard hairs while the undercoat contains both guard hairs and downy fur.
The main component in cat fur is sebum, which accounts for most shedding. This oily substance coats your pet’s skin and provides protection from environmental factors like dirt or water.
While sebum protects your pet from external elements, it can also have adverse effects on humans if breathed in over extended periods of time.
How to Get Rid of Cat Hair
Anyone with a cat knows that they shed like no other creature.
Though not the most pleasant of tasks, removing kitty hair from your furniture can be as easy as running it over with a damp rubber glove or sponge and then picking up any small spots using either a lint roller or handheld vacuum.
To help loosen all those stubborn hairs from fabric and carpeting for easy removal just lightly spray diluted water mixed with light-hold fabric softener onto any cloth furnishing before wiping clean!
Here are some quick tips for keeping your cat hair at bay.
- Vacuuming is the best way to remove it from the carpet and should be done regularly with a thorough clean once or twice per week.
- Loosen up any stubborn spots using a lightly dampened mop or sponge on low-pile carpets!
- And last but not least: remember that those couch cushions aren’t going anywhere so they’re worth cleaning as often as you can manage
The removal of cat hair is a common frustration for many people, and if you have ever tried to remove cat hair from clothes with your bare hands or lint roller then we can guess just how frustrating it must be.
Get your hands on a dishtowel, rubber gloves, and water – that’s right! All three of these items are found in most homes so there should be no excuse for not keeping them handy by setting up an area at home or work where they can easily be reached when needed.
7 Tips to Keep Cat Hair Under Control
- Keep your cat off the furniture
- Brush your cat regularly to remove loose hair and prevent matting
- Use a lint roller or tape for clothing, furniture, car seats, etc
- Vacuum often with an attachment that is designed to pick up pet hair
- Wash bedding frequently in hot water and use fabric softener on sheets before drying them to reduce static cling which can attract pet hair
- Change filters in vacuum cleaner every 3 months or as needed if you have pets at home
- Bathe your cat monthly (or more often if they are shedding heavily)
Can Cat Hair Get Stuck in Your Lungs?
Yes, it can.
Cat hair is a common cause of asthma and allergic reactions. When the cat sheds its hair, these tiny strands are released into the air and then inhaled by humans. The shedding of dead skin cells is another source of indoor allergens for cat owners to be aware of as well.
We all know that cats shed a lot of hair. It’s one of the many reasons why it is important to brush your cat on a regular basis. But did you know that there are other ways in which cat hair can be harmful, even if you’re not an owner?
The concern with these little hairs getting lodged in the bronchi or small airways. It isn’t so great when you’re the one having trouble breathing. If you have asthma already, then those little hairs will cause more inflammation and irritate your lungs.