If you have allergies, one of the most difficult things to deal with is the reactions you may have around animals.
If you love pets, specifically cats, you’re likely to find that you won’t be able to be around them without red, itchy eyes and skin, constant sneezing, or a runny nose. Some people are so allergic to cats that it can be dangerous to their health.
Thankfully, there is such a thing as hypoallergenic cats! This means cats that are safe or safer to be around those with allergies. Although these kinds of cats can be more expensive or rare to find, it gives people with allergies an option!
So let’s say you have an allergy and you’re considering buying a cat! You might be wondering whether or not Bengal cats are hypoallergenic.
If you find yourself wondering about this, you’ve come to the right place! Below is a short guide that will tell you everything you need to know about how Bengal cats interact with allergies, and how you can buy the perfect hypoallergenic pet for you.
HOW IS A CAT HYPOALLERGENIC?
Before we take a closer look at Bengal cats, in particular, let’s take a moment to understand how allergies work and how a pet can be hypoallergenic.
What constitutes a ‘hypoallergenic’ cat can be contentious, but the main reason is to do with how much of a specific allergen they produce. Pet allergies usually come from a protein they produce known as Fel d 1, although there are others that can cause allergic reactions.
Hypoallergenic cats are generally classified as breeds that produce less dander - the shedding of both dead skin cells, saliva, and fur.
This means that as an allergy sufferer, you’re less likely to come into contact with this specific protein. Hairless cats, for example, are a great example of a ‘hypoallergenic’ cat because they don’t have any fur to shed.
That’s not to say that if you have one of these animals you’ll be completely immune to allergens, only that they are going to cause you much less discomfort.
So now let’s take a look at Bengal Cats and determine whether or not they classify as hypoallergenic. For a quick overview, Bengal cats are a domesticated breed of cat that was created as a hybrid of other breeds.
Although the history of selective cat breeding can be difficult to trace, the Bengal cat appears to be a mix of breeds such as the Asian Leopard Cat and the Egyptian Mau.
In the modern-day, they are a popular breed for allergy sufferers because of their hypoallergenic qualities.
One of the first things to note here is that no cat is truly hypoallergenic. Depending on the severity of your allergy, you might see a range of different symptoms.
A domestic cat is prone to walk/climb all-around your house, which means that they have a lot of opportunities to spread allergens even if you’re not in direct contact with them.
So what about Bengal Cats in particular? Do they classify as hypoallergenic? If you’ve been looking at these gorgeous cats and hoping, we can tell you that they are commonly classified as hypoallergenic, meaning the amount of dander they produce is kinder on allergy sufferers.
We’re not completely sure why Bengal Cats produce less dander than other breeds, but it appears to be because of their shorter coats or because they shed much less than other breeds.
One thing you’ll notice with hypoallergenic pets is whether they are or not has a lot to do with how long their coat is.
WILL I BE ALLERGIC TO A BENGAL CAT?
We’re sorry to say, but without direct contact with one, it’s impossible to tell ahead of time. As said before, ‘hypoallergenic’ as a term, isn’t a full-proof classification.
It’s better to define it as ‘less likely’ to produce severe reactions in allergy sufferers. How well hypoallergenic cats and pets in general work as a solution for you as a sufferer depends on how severe your reaction is and how much you are in contact with the animal in question.
For example, you could find that within a singular interaction with a Bengal Cat your reaction isn’t all the severe, but when you have one in your house you are getting constant reactions.
This is because when a cat lives in your home it constantly spread dander and you are often in contact with it.
The best way to work out if you’d be allergic to a Bengal cat is to find somebody else who has one, and organize more than just one trip to meet them.
See how your allergies interact with the breed before committing to buying one. The worst-case scenario is introducing a new pet into your home and having severe reactions.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
WHAT OTHER CATS ARE HYPOALLERGENIC?
Other common breeds that are classified as hypoallergenic are Sphynx, Cornish Rex, Devon Rex, Oriental, Russian Blue, Balinese, and Siberian.
Is There Such Thing As A 100% Hypoallergenic Cat?
There is no such thing as a 100% hypoallergenic cat. Generally, hypoallergenic cats help people with allergies but are not a full-proof guarantee. This all depends on the severity of your allergy and how long you stay in contact with the cat in question.
So there you have it - the most important thing to remember about this topic is that Bengal Cats are commonly classified as ‘hypoallergenic,’ but what that word means is often misunderstood.
Hypoallergenic generally means that they produce less dander, and are less likely to cause reactions in sufferers. The severity of a pet hair allergy depends on the person and their individual sensitivity.
We hope that this article has helped you to understand Bengal cats and whether or not they’re hypoallergenic, and that you now have a foundation to decide whether or not Bengal Cats are a good match for your own needs.
At Love4Cats, our practice involves consistent collaboration with licensed veterinarians and reputable industry experts. However, it's important to note that the content provided on Excited Cats is not intended as veterinary advice. While we strive to enhance your understanding of feline care, the information presented on this blog should not replace professional veterinary guidance.