Tuesday , September 27 2022

Growing up with female dogs can reduce the risk of asthma in a child



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New Swedish studies have found that growing up with a dog is associated with a reduced risk of asthma in children, especially if the dog is female.

In a study at the Karolinska Institute and the University of Uppsala, a new large-scale study looked at data on the national register for all children born in Sweden from 2001 to 2004 – a total of 23,585 babies – who had a dog in their home during their first year of life .

The researchers classified each dog according to gender, age, size, and whether they were described as "hypoallergenic" and examined the relationship between each of the characteristics and risks of asthma, allergic diagnoses, or asthma or allergic drugs at the age of six.

The team also took into account all known factors that could affect the risk of asthma or allergies in children, such as, for example, whether parents had asthma or allergies and the number of brothers and sisters.

Findings, published in Scientific Reports, showed that the prevalence of asthma in the sixth age was 5.4 percent, although certain characteristics of the dog influenced the reduction of this risk.

Children with only female dogs at home had a 16 percent lower risk of asthma than those who grew up in males, and children living with two or more dogs had a 21 percent lower risk of asthma than those who lived with only one dogs.

Children living with male dogs had a similar risk of asthma to children who did not have a dog.

The researchers also found that children whose parents had asthma and allergies were more likely to be exposed to races that were anecdotally described as "hypoallergenic", compared to children whose parents are asthma and without allergy.

However, exposure to these races is associated with 27% of the increased risk of allergy, although the risk of asthma is not increased. In addition, the researchers also failed to find the relationship between race "allergies" and a lower risk of asthma.

Although previous studies have already found a link between growing up in the dog and a lower risk of asthma in childhood, it has not been known until now whether the characteristics of a dog can also change this risk.

"A sex dog can affect the amount of allergens, and we know that uncastrated male dogs express more specific allergens than castrated dogs and women's dogs," explains co-author of Tove Fall. "Moreover, some species are described as anecdotal as" hypoallergenic "or" friendly allergic "and they say they are more suitable for people with allergies, but there is no scientific evidence for it."

"Probably the explanation for this higher risk is that families with a history of pet allergies are more likely to choose these dogs, and also that dogs" allergy-friendly "do not actually release less allergens," added Catarina Almkvist Malmros, who led the study with Fall.

She added: "The findings should be carefully treated because we can not say anything about any real causation. More studies are needed to track differences over time, measure the risk of allergies with biomarkers and take microflora into consideration."

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