New Zealand Dog News

Reviewing the dog news in New Zealand with editors comments. Someone needs to keep reviewing how our dogs are doing in society.

April 29, 2008

Hair of the dog keeps kid's allergies at bay

Having a dog in the house reduces the risk that young children will develop allergies, German researchers said.

The finding, based on a six-year study of 9000 children, lends weight to the theory that growing up with a pet trains the immune system to be less sensitive to potential triggers for allergies like asthma, eczema and hay fever.

Just why this should be is unclear but scientists believe youngsters may get beneficial early exposure to germs carried into the house on the animal's fur, which helps their immune systems develop.

"Our results show clearly that the presence of a dog in the home during subjects' infancy is associated with a significantly low level of sensitisation to pollens and inhaled allergens," said Joachim Heinrich of the National Research Centre for Environmental Health in Munich. MORE>>

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