Someone Allergic to Dogs Is Visiting–What Should I Do?

Preparing for guests can often be a very exciting yet stressful time. It usually means making sure the fridge is stocked, the house is clean, and everything is generally in order to help make a good impression. However, in some cases, extra steps have to be taken. Many of us have furry companions that call our house their home as well, which means there are traces of their presence everywhere – which can lead to some pretty major problems if your house guest is allergic to your fuzzy housemate.

This doesn’t mean you need to tell your guest to stay away, not at all. It just means that some extra precautions will need to be taken, because the last thing we want to do is make someone feel unwelcome or worse, cause a health problem. Before we get into that fully, let’s strip away some of that inevitable guilt that will come from having to choose between letting your dog run free and having your loved one be comfortable. Guests with allergies know that there will be some inconvenience on your part when it comes to this, so try not to make them feel bad by bringing it up.

Having to adjust their schedule and lifestyle to accommodate a guest can be jarring for your pet as well, so maybe consider giving them a special treat or a new toy once the visit is over for their cooperation.

Now that we’ve covered that, let’s get your place ready for your guest.

…Hotels?

While this may be a little bit of a prickly suggestion, it may be the best one. Some allergies are far more severe than a simple cleaning can handle, in which case it would be best for everyone involved if your guest stayed at a hotel for the duration of their visit – that way, there’s no concern about their allergies. Just make sure when you go and see them that you wash the dander off of your clothes.

Clean Everything

If your guest insists on staying with you, then you need to really prepare. Now, cleaning may sound simple enough, but we’re not talking about a quick once over with some product and a wet cloth. Nope, some really good elbow grease is going to be required for this job. Start with the room your guest will be staying in and any common areas that they will be spending a lot of time in. Wash any clothes and blankets that have been exposed to your dog’s fur.

Vacuum any carpets or rugs that may be holding dander – utilize a steamer if you have access to one. That really helps get to the core of the carpet and really pulls out the dander. This includes any upholstered furniture, as the fibers will hold on tightly to that excess fur and dander. Yes, this even means that you’ll need to scrub walls and grout inside of tiles. Really give your home a good thorough deep cleaning.

It could also help to have a guest room that is a complete “no fly zone” for your dog. It alleviates some of the cleaning pressure that you’ll face ahead of your guest’s arrival, and it greatly reduces the risk of there being a severe threat of heavy dander in that room.

Give the Dog a Bath

It’s also helpful to give your dog a bath right before your guest arrives, as that will eliminate some of the dander that they may be carrying around. It could also be helpful to get the dog fully groomed and their hair cut. Make sure that your dog has been thoroughly brushed! Ideally use a brush that will remove hair from all layers of your dog’s coat. This way, there will be less chance for fur to become a problem.

Make Temporary Living Arrangements for the Dog

This part isn’t so fun for you, because your dog is home and should be comfortable, but it’s a nice gesture to at least limit the areas that your dog is able to go into while your guest is visiting. By confining them to one area, it will be easier for your guest to navigate the home without their allergies flaring up. Make sure to give them a little something special for being gracious for your guests as well, it may be difficult for them especially if they are unable to sleep where they are accustomed to.

Get an Air Purifier

Full disclosure, these things can be a little on the expensive side, but they could be a lifesaver for your allergy ridden guests. Air purifiers with a HEPA filter are especially helpful, as they eliminate 99% of those harmful airborne particles that will plague your guests. It would be best to place the purifier in the room that the guest will be spending the most time in.

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