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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I desperately want a pet. Two goldfish just ain't cutting it. I've always loved cats and would love to have another one, but my BIL is so severely allergic that it means he would NEVER get to come visit. They live out of town so our house is the "hotel house", and it's just not worth it to basically shun him from my house for a cat. So what I'm looking for is a pet that's like a cat - independent, mellow, can roam the house without worrying about peeing all over or chewing up the furniture, litter-trainable, etc. Not too demanding, eh?
Any suggestions? I'm not at all opposed to "alternative" pets like ferrets or chinchillas, either.
 

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Personally, I've always thought only cats acted like cats. I've known some people who have had bunnys (they are crate trainable) and ferrets.

Just a thought, my best friend comes to visit (and stays as she is long distance now...she typically stays 4 days to a week) AND she just takes medication when she comes over. Hers is a 24 hour pill (over the counter too). She is veru allergic as well...BUT...she too have always loved my cats. When we lived close she actually used to come over and take care of them when we went on vacation
. She just took the medication about an hour before.

For all you know, your brother and law might not mind having to take a pill or two when he visits. My girlfriend considered it a treat since she could never have a cat at home.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Quote:

Originally Posted by phatchristy View Post
For all you know, your brother and law might not mind having to take a pill or two when he visits. My girlfriend considered it a treat since she could never have a cat at home.


Actually, when I still lived with my mom she put the cats downstairs the night before they were supposed to come over, shampooed all the carpets, vacuumed all the furniture and covered them with sheets, AND he took his allergy meds before he came over and he was still outside wheezing after an hour.
: I have NEVER seen anyone with allergies to cats this bad (although I admit I don't know a whole lot of people with cat allergies, but this is CRAZY).

Hmmm, a small pig... You know, I always wanted a potbellied pig when I was little...
 

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Just to warn you if you are really concerned about your BIL's allergies.... lots of people with cat allergies have allergies to other furry mammals too. I am definitely allergic to cats and somewhat allergic to rabbits, ferrets, and some dogs. If your BIL is that highly allergic, you might want to have him test out the chosen animal before committing to it.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by CallMeMommy View Post
Actually, when I still lived with my mom she put the cats downstairs the night before they were supposed to come over, shampooed all the carpets, vacuumed all the furniture and covered them with sheets, AND he took his allergy meds before he came over and he was still outside wheezing after an hour.
: I have NEVER seen anyone with allergies to cats this bad (although I admit I don't know a whole lot of people with cat allergies, but this is CRAZY).

Hmmm, a small pig... You know, I always wanted a potbellied pig when I was little...
my son is the same (we ended up giving away our two dogs and cats
)
my parents have a dog and two cats and i know they go nuts vacuming and cleaning when we come over but he still gets wheezy.
 

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I was going to say what Gealach said about other pet allergies. Bunnies do nibble stuff and sometimes have accidents. My bunnies give the litterbox a good effort but still track some poopies out on their feet or bums. We don't let them wander around the house much, mostly outside in a pen in the grass.

I like guinea pigs, but they stay in cages. They're my favorite little convenient pet.
They don't scratch the furniture, shed much, smell bad (if you keep them clean like any other critter), or poop on the floor. And they do love to snuggle and squeak 'hello' to their people.
 

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My SIL had a ferret and loved it - however, when it was loose it got into the plants and dug the hell out of them , got stuck in small spaces, hid ... needless to say, it was a lot cuter IN the cage and I personally would not let a ferret wander around.

Quote:

Originally Posted by phatchristy
Personally, I've always thought only cats acted like cats.
ITA. In general, cats are very independent/self-serving; and most other animals just aren't like that.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by skellbelle View Post
ITA. In general, cats are very independent/self-serving; and most other animals just aren't like that.
Glad someone agrees with me...I find that cats act a lot like people...at least the cats I have had over my life have. They seem to think they're just as important as us, they are so intelligent....sure, mainly independant and take care of their grooming and toilet needs on their own, but they are also very receptive to love and affection and LOTS of cuddling. I find they do thrive on the attention and love from their human friends.

I don't know how to describe it...I grew up with dogs, and dogs are nice too...but in a lot of ways having a cat to me didn't feel like having a pet...it felt more like having an adult best friend or companion (aka roommate
). Having a dog felt more like having a toddler, still nice and fun, just a lot more work in many different ways.


Err...excuse my little tangent.


OH, did anyone mention they do have a new developed breed of cats which has a genetic mutation which are hypoallergenic. You could google it...I think they're called allerca....something like that. But, they are around $3,000.
 

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I had a friend with an indoor pot-bellied pig named "Porkchop." Incredibly intelligent, loving, social, clean animal. She only did her business in one part of the yard, and was actually shy about anybody watching her while she did it. The only complaint my friend had was that she had held Porkchop all the time when she was a piglet; once full-grown, she still wanted to be a lap-pig. I don't know anything about how big the pigs get, if it's proportional to how much you feed them or if it's in their genetic code, but Porkchop was over 100lbs and would accidentally leave hoof-shaped bruises on her tummy!


Eta: if you are looking into a pig, make sure you find out your city codes...some places still think pet pot-bellied pigs are livestock...
 

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My shih tzu is just like a cat... except she can't mouse and goes potty outside lol

She lays on the top of the couch... loves cats, and will rub her head against your ankle when she walks by you... we call her the cat dog.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Quote:

Originally Posted by gealach View Post
Just to warn you if you are really concerned about your BIL's allergies.... lots of people with cat allergies have allergies to other furry mammals too. I am definitely allergic to cats and somewhat allergic to rabbits, ferrets, and some dogs. If your BIL is that highly allergic, you might want to have him test out the chosen animal before committing to it.
Ah crap. I know he's okay with ferrets as they "inherited" some when they bought a house once.

I may have to talk DH into getting guinea pigs again. We had two at one point but had to give them away when our landlord (after a year without a single complaint) pitched a fit because the hallway smelled and blamed it on our pigs (um, you don't think the fact that the roof leaked whenever it rained or the fact that the neighbors left there garbage bags out in the hall had anything to do with it?
: ) I do miss my piggies...
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Quote:

Originally Posted by mama2toomany View Post
My shih tzu is just like a cat... except she can't mouse and goes potty outside lol

She lays on the top of the couch... loves cats, and will rub her head against your ankle when she walks by you... we call her the cat dog.
We had a dog like that when I was younger. She wasn't the brightest thing and we think she took her behavior cues from our cats.
 

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A few words about chinchillas, since you mentioned them. We have 4 at the moment. Chins don't have dander but they do shed, so depending on what he has trouble with, this might or might not be a problem. Chins are very sweet and cute and fairly quiet. They are fairly easy to maintain and don't smell (if they are taken care of properly) but they are fairly flighty creatures (think mixture between squirrel and rabbit, maybe?). They can litterbox train for urine fairly well, but they leave little droppings just about everywhere they go (think very large mouse droppings) they are easy to vacuum up and do not stink but still... it is what it is
They also chew. Not only can/do they chew wood but also plastic, cardboard, electrical wires, telephone cords etc. so if they are going to be loose in the house it can be hard to chin-proof very effectively. They can also jump several feet in the air. Hope this helps
 

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A small dog can be paper-trained. If you adopt an older chihuahua or miniature poodle from rescue, you might find one that's just as neurotic and crazy as a cat.
Dog dander is allergenic, of course, but it's not nearly as tenacious or sticky as the feline fel d 1 protein, which can last for over a year. Dog dander is much easier to clean up/filter.

I react to pretty much all critters with hair or feathers. I can't last more than a few minutes in a house with cats (require loads of meds, caffeine, and an open window). And some folks are allergic to pot-bellied pigs. Explore a bit, though. You may find something which works for you.
 

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Lhasa apso dogs, which look like shih tzus, potty outside, though they can be paper-trained, but they otherwise have personalities like cats since they were bred to resemble miniature lions. They have the same superior attitude, disdain for training, and can spring up onto high places when they're young and strong ("lhasa apso" supposedly means something like "nimble like a goat" in Tibetan). They are the size of cats. If the living situation changes so your house is no longer the "hotel," and you want a cat later, they get along well with cats.
 

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Quote:
Just to warn you if you are really concerned about your BIL's allergies.... lots of people with cat allergies have allergies to other furry mammals too.
That's what I was going to say. Also, DB had a ferret that could NOT be litter box trained, we tried everything.
 
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