Air Purifiers, pet sprays etc. Please advise!


we (along with our asthma nurse) think our 3 year old has an allergy to cats & dogs. His asthma is usually triggered by colds and viruses however EVERY time we have stayed at either of our parents his nose starts running and he starts coughing all night and his asthma plays up. It then usually lasts a few days after we return home. We have only just this past weekend put 2 & 2 together and realised it was the pets.

Yesterday the asthma nurse said that the best thing is just avoidance but how can we do that? Our parents lives a few hundred miles away and so when we go we stay with them. It's not possible for us to pay to stay in a motel for that many nights (as my nurse suggested). She feels strongly that if he's allergic and his chest gets so bad so quickly we really should take it seriously, which we do. But pretty much everyone in our families have dogs or cats.

I have been looking on the internet and have come across sprays you spray onto the pets, bedding, furnishings and also air purifiers. They all sound good but do they work? We are heading down to stay for one week in June to visit our families again. ANY advice is appreciated. The nurse did say that she's not overly happy about just giving Joel antihistamine through the day (although I can at night) because we aren't just dealing with eyes and nose problems but with his chest which she feels is more worrying as he's so young.

Sorry this is long but really appreciate any advice on air purifiers etc. THANKS.

6 Replies

  • Hiya my daughter just took part in a trial for an air purifer. She is 6 and has severe brittle asthma controlled with sub-cut infusions.the purifer we tried had no effect what so ever on her asthma. I don't know if i'm allowed to say ( mods remove if neccesary) this purifier contained Flixonase and released it every hour. It was part of a trial for a very famous childrens hospital.It was noisy and it had to run 2 hours before she went to bed and stay on all night .As she shares a room with her sister this was not a good idea.But getting back to the subject if your son has allergies to cats and dogs it may be worth trying one to see if it makes a difference. Different things work for different people. I hope you find something that relieves his symptoms . Take Care Nikki

  • Landa,

    Have your family tried grooming the pets daily for a week before you come and while you are there (outside). I have trouble with my guide dog setting off my nose/chest sometimes but its the pollen from outside that causes it. Grooming her regularly keeps down the hair in the air and on the floor and the dust and dander in her fur.

    I have a zoom groom, then I use a bristle brush and then a comb. If you brush the opposite way to the fur grows and then the right way when using the zoom groom and brush until no hair comes off (or only a little) and then run through it with a comb. A damp vyleda cloth can sometimes be used to get the remaining bits of hair off too (although I've not used it since I was taught how to groom properly during guide dog training).

    I also have hypoallergenic bedding for her which I got from tesco. If you get your family to wash the bedding and do a really good daily hoover while you are there that may also help?

    Don't let the pets in the room where he sleeps for the time you are there and keep the door shut so as little hair as possible gets in. It will make things a lot easier at night.

    I'm not sure whether an air purifier is likely to work and personally sprays set me off anyway. Those are the most practical tips I can think of.

  • Hi,

    Im allergic to pollen, a friend of mine gave me a leaflet & a website about an air purifier that u can wear around your neck to stop any thing tht u are allergic to coming anywhere nr you. It meant to help Asthma suffers too. Not sure how it works if any1 has used it then please let me know. The web site is

  • Allergy UK

    Hi Landa

    I've just read your post on the Asthma forum but I think you're best to get the answers you need from Allergy UK ( where they have list of approved products that have been very well tested for exactly your purpose. The helpline staff might be able to advise you further or there is a symbol on their webpage with a leaf design on it that will take you to the list of products and where to get them.

    If your son is allergic to cats/dogs it may well be worth a chat with your gp before you go to visit your parents next time as it might be possible to treat your son with antihistamines for a couple of days before you go, keep taking them while your there and maybe even for a couple of days when you get back. I'm not medically qualified but it would make sense to me. My daughter has quite severe allergies and we've found that the right antihistamine can make a world of difference. But you really need your gps support with this and not something bought over the counter.

    Hope this helps.

    Best wishes


  • Hi Landa

    I think a look at the Allergy UK website might be a good idea. They have a list of approved products that might be what you're looking for and if not, their helpline staff may well have advice to offer. I believe there are sprays you can treat a dog/cat with to lessen the allergens given off but, again, the helpline staff could advice you on that one.

    Maybe a chat with your gp before your next visit would help too. Perhaps he could prescribe an antihistamine before you go to help your son? Best consult with the doctor on that one though.

    Hope this helps.


  • Oh dear, its really hard when families or very close friends have a trigger in their homes that exacerbates asthma. Do they have a garden? you could pitch a tent maybe. The safest and obvious answer is avoidance but that is not always the easiest option. Maybe you will discover the joys of camping, i have yet to find a product that stops my pet allergies and have reluctantly had to avoid pets. If someone could create one they would be a millionaire! Hope you enjoy your visit, take care, Lois

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