Are lionhead rabbits hypoallergenic? This is certainly a question which many people ask themselves before deciding to adopt one into their home. Especially if they suffer from asthma or pet allergies.
All animals which have fur, including rabbits, cannot be hypoallergenic. And lionhead rabbits are no exception here. Furthermore, because of their heavy fur and the mane which encircles their heads, they can even bring to more frequent allergy or asthma triggers.
If you or any of your family members are sensitive in regard to that, it is probably best not to get a rabbit at all. However, being rabbit lovers ourselves, we do understand that sometimes compromising on favorite pets is not an option.
Handling your pet correctly and performing various preventive activities sounds much more acceptable to some.
Do Lionhead Rabbits Shed a Lot?
Lionhead rabbits particularly shed a lot, due to their distinctively longer fur. Mostly, they have two major sheds in a year. One is to release their thicker winter coat and the second is to shed the thinner summer coat.
However, rabbits which are kept indoors are not in contact with sunlight as much as outdoor rabbits are, so these often tend to have more frequent but minor shedding.
Grooming your lionhead rabbit once or twice each week is a must. And such grooming should become more frequent during the major sheds.
Symptoms of Rabbit Allergy
Rabbit allergens are related to the specific protein they produce and are mostly found in dander, saliva, and fur. Once such allergens get in contact with our bodies or the environment in which we live, our bodies react by creating an inflammatory response.
Most symptoms are easy to recognize and refer to respiratory or skin-visible changes. According to this super-helpful article, these include:
- Itchy, watery and/or red eyes;
- Runny nose or nasal congestion;
- Sneezing and coughing;
- Swollen and often blue-colored skin under the eyes;
- Itchy and red patches of skin;
For those who suffer from asthma, symptoms are the usual and they can be easily recognized by trouble with breathing. These include audible wheezing sounds and chest tightness.
Dealing with Rabbit Allergies
If you are experiencing milder allergy symptoms rather than severe ones, there can be several ways of reducing the amounts of pet allergens around your home.
Regular grooming activities will decrease the amount of skin cells around your rabbit and, therefore, around you and your family.
Rather than doing weekly grooming, it is suggested to perform this more often when trying to reduce the allergens. Prepare yourself to brush your rabbit every two days during light shedding season perhaps, and several times each day during those major sheds.
Not all rabbits like to be brushed, but all of them love being petted. So, try to begin with hand petting and to slowly switch to a brush at some point. There are several available choices of rabbit brushes across pet stores and they will all do simply fine.
However, the biggest issue with choosing the right brush is finding the one which your rabbit will tolerate. Glove brushes can be handy, but they will not do the best job at pulling out the loose fur from the undercoat.
If you have a terrace or an outside area, try brushing your rabbit there. This will ensure there are fewer skin cells and hair inside your home.
Cleaning is the only efficient way to prevent allergens getting in touch with your body and the air which you breathe. Therefore, vacuuming certainly being the most important.
Many owners who have allergies or asthma but also a furry pet have simply made their mind at peace with daily vacuuming activities. This simply has to become your new routine. Focus on the areas where your rabbit hangs the most, such as couches or their favorite sleeping blankets.
Regularly cleaning their enclosures is just as important. Again, try doing that outside whenever possible, to avoid allergens spreading around the air you breathe.
Last but not least, always use cleaning products which are not life threatening for your pet.
3. Air Filtration
Investing into a high-quality HEPA filtration is suggestable to all people who suffer from asthma or respiratory allergies, whether they own a pet or not. So, this could be an amazingly helpful gadget in your home at any time.
For instance, the Medify MA-15 Air Purifier is a quite affordable but long-lasting solution. An air purifier like this will literally clean out the air across the entire room.
It pulls the air from lateral sides, making it pass through a HEPA filter, and it releases fresh and clear air back into the room. This can absolutely keep all the respiratory allergens under control. And it seems to be quite silent, which will certainly make your rabbit happy.
4. Other Allergens
Sometimes, owners are doing all the necessary prevention activities but still get allergic reactions. In that case, you may want to double-check whether you are perhaps allergic to other reactors which are connected to owning a rabbit. These often include hay or, even more often, dust mites.
The best and most efficient way to find that out is by doing a simple allergy test with the help of your doctor.
5. Allergy Neutralizer
Modern technology leads to great inventions, and allergy neutralizers are certainly one of those. The Allerpet Pet Dander Remover comes in a bottle and it is enough rubbing some across the rabbit’s fur to make it bind proteins. Why not giving it a try?
Although there are some rabbit species which shed less fur and cause less allergic reactions, such as the Mini Rex breed, there is no such thing as a hypoallergenic rabbit.
This does not necessarily have to mean that you need to give up on owning a lionhead rabbit even if you suffer from allergies. Or even asthma.
However, there are some activities like regular vacuuming and grooming which need to become part of your daily routine. But do not get discouraged, as there are amazingly helpful modern products, too.