If you are eager add to a dog to your family but you suffer from asthma and allergies, you may be interested in checking out some of the "hypoallergenic" breeds. The only problem, according to allergists, is that there actually may be no such thing.

Low-Allergy Pets?
Today, as many as 15 to 30 percent of people who suffer from allergies find their symptoms triggered by cats and dogs, according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. With the problem so widespread, there has been much attention lately on the types of pets that are safe for people with allergies. In fact, certain breeds and cross-breeds that do not shed have been advertised as being very low-risk for triggering allergies.

But most allergists dispute this fact, explaining that often it is a protein in the dog's saliva and dander that spurs an allergic reaction, regardless of how much hair the dog has, so no dog can be 100 percent allergy free. In addition, how allergic a person will be can vary from one dog to the next, even among different pets of the exact same breed.

Symptoms of Dog Allergies
If you suffer from pet allergies, you know all too well how uncomfortable they can be. Some of the common symptoms you may experience can include:

  • Coughing
  • Sneezing
  • Red, itchy eyes
  • Rash or hives
  • Asthma symptoms

Lower-Risk Breeds
Although the odds may be against you, if you still want a dog to call your own, experts recommend considering smaller breeds, since there is less body surface to contain allergens. The following breeds, although not allergy-free, could be less likely to spur your symptoms than some of their larger counterparts, (but remember that there are no guarantees):

  • Poodles
  • Bichon Frises
  • Maltese
  • Shih Tzu
  • Labradoodles and other cross-bred or mixed breeds

Also keep in mind that if you have a sensitive immune system, even minimal exposure to these or any other types of dogs can indeed trigger your allergy.

Ways to Manage Dog Allergies
Finally, if you find a dog that you can tolerate, there are some easy ongoing steps that the experts recommend to minimize the effects it leaves.

  • Clean and vacuum your home often
  • Use an air filter
  • Keep the bedroom off-limits to your dog
  • Give it baths and have it groomed frequently