How to Combat Pet Dander with Air Duct Cleaning
To many of us, our pets are equal members of the family. But even though we adore Fido and Bella, the shedding and constant vacuuming can become a daily nuisance, especially for those with pet-related allergies. Sure, the fur clinging to your favorite pair of black pants may be annoying, but did you know the pet dander circulating throughout your home may be causing bigger problems and even affecting your family’s health?
What Exactly is Pet Dander?
According to the American Lung Association, pet dander is made up of microscopic flecks of skin shed by cats, dogs, rodents, birds and other animals with fur or feathers. Because of their tiny size and jagged shape, these allergens easily stick to furniture, bedding, fabrics, and many items carried into and out of the home.
How Does Pet Dander Affect Health?
For those with allergies or asthma triggered by pet allergens, breathing in pet dander can make respiratory symptoms worse. Even though sensitivity levels may vary from person to person, individuals who experience reactions may have symptoms including:
- Runny nose
- Itchy or watery eyes
How to Combat Pet Dander
Even though you love your pet, it shouldn’t come at the cost of your family’s health or comfort. So how do you deal with pet dander? Here are a few methods you can add to your weekly cleaning routine to lessen the presence of pet-related allergens in your home:
- Vacuum carpets and furniture weekly to prevent buildup.
- Dust surfaces with a damp cloth to trap and remove dust and dander.
- Regularly bathe your pets and brush them outdoors to prevent dander from spreading.
- Keep your cat’s litter box away from air vents.
- Avoid fabric-covered furniture, cloth drapes, carpets and rugs, and other upholstered household furnishings that accumulate dander.
- Regularly change your air filters and have your air ducts properly cleaned.
How Air Duct Cleaning Can Help
Did you know that the air in a home—along with those pesky pet allergens—typically circulates through the HVAC system and air ducts 5 to 7 times a day? During the circulation process, it’s also common for allergens and other airborne contaminants to settle in the air ducts. Eliminating pet dander from your home entirely can be a nearly impossible task, but by having your air ducts properly cleaned, you lessen the opportunity for dander to accumulate and be redistributed back into the air you and your family breathe.
So, who can you turn to for your air duct cleaning needs? It’s important to be aware of deals that seem too good to be true. These companies, known as “blow-and-go” or “bait and switch” air duct cleaners, often advertise a drastically discounted rate and then convince customers that the job will require additional cleaning, leaving the unsuspecting homeowner with a hefty bill and poorly cleaned air ducts. To make sure the job is done right, use the Find a Professional tool on the NADCA website to locate a reputable air duct cleaning company in your area. NADCA members have advanced training and follow a higher standard of customer service and cleaning.
Ready to take the next step towards reducing pet dander in your home? Find a NADCA member near you.