If you've just adopted a beautiful bird only to find that your allergies rev up when you come into close contact with the bird for prolonged periods of time, you may be allergic to your bird.
Don't despair because as scary as this discovery can be, here are 7 things you can do as well as changes you can make to enjoy your bird while keeping your allergies under control.
Keep the Bird's Room and Cage Clean-This cannot be stressed enough. Keep the cage clear of dropping and feathers, vacuum regularly, mop the floor daily, and change its drinking water as often as needed to keep it fresh. This is of course healthy for your bird, and it also prevents mold growth.
If you feed your bird fresh foods (and it will love you for this), be sure to throw them away after several hours to avoid mold growth.
Shower with Your Bird-This is convenient way to give your bird a bath, and spend time with it in an environment where the dander is low.
Bird perches are relatively inexpensive and are easily installed. Make sure they are placed away from direct spray, and turn the nozzle to a super gentle spray setting.
You'll know immediately whether your bird likes the water. And if it does, it will do the rest for you. Always check with your vet about what products to use and how often to use them.
Wear a Mask - If you are the one doing the daily cleaning, be sure to wear a mask when you are performing task that are likely stir up dander and feathers. Your local hardware store is sure to carry a variety.
Experiment until you find one that allows you to be most comfortable when cleaning up after your bird.
Keep Your Hands Clean -- Wearing gloves is best, but if you choose not to, wash your hands immediately after you finish to minimize contact with skin and eyes. This will greatly reduce the number of allergens that have direct contact.
Remove Fabrics and Upholstery - This process may have to be a gradual one, but it is well worth the time, money, and effort in terms of the significant improvement you will see in your allergies.
Draperies, carpet, upholstered furniture make great place for dander to hide, and sitting, dusting, and even vacuuming can send a ton of dander airborne. This makes it easy for it to invade your eyes, nose, and throat triggering the symptoms that can make you so miserable
Change Your House Filters Often - Get the smallest particulate size filter that they make for your central system. Start by changing them once a month. Take note of whether you find less dust on the furniture and floor. If this does decrease the dust, go to 2 months.
Gradually lengthen the frequency of filter changes until you have found the least number of changes that produce the desired result. Mark the dates on your calendar, and stay regular with replacing them.
Use a HEPA Air Purifier - Cleaning the air with a high efficiency particle arresting (abbreviated as HEPA) air purifier assures you that for every 10,000 particulates greater than .3 microns, it will remove 99,997 of them leaving only 3 out of 10,000.
Providing clean, filtered air all day every day is good for both you and your bird. Increase the rate of air exchange when cleaning the room and cage to keep the dander count low and the air quality high. And remember, clean air also cuts down on the spread of airborne disease and infections for both you and your bird.