4beach dogHUMAN DANDER issues and allergies for dogs, ie what it is  and how to overcome it.

Dog reactions to dander are one of the most unknown and misunderstood allergies. We recently did a blog about dust and dust mites and they are often more common for dogs, but also relatively low on most people’s radar.

Also as the method of eradicating the source means cleaning your house better and changing the temp and humidity in the house, many people don’t like the solution.

A dog allergy to Dander is essentially a dog allergy to human dead skin.

What a dander reaction for dogs looks like

Like many other dog skin allergies a dog will scratch, and have bald spots on its skin, there will be inflammation red areas, and areas will bleed because the dog scratches too much, laying open the way to secondary infections.

But when all of the regular allergies are ruled out, that is when the dander issue might be uncovered.

See dogs can be allergic to a protein in the food you feed them.  Feeding them a hypo allergenic dog food might work, but if you feed them treats or they get leakage of foods into their diet from scraps etc they can still get allergy reactions.

If you rule out food allergies, and there are no obvious signs of insect infestations like ticks, fleas or dust mites … and there is no gland or organ malfunction issue … then dander is often the last thing checked.

And no, its is not incredibly common, so it makes sense that its not on the radar.

But when  cleansing and soothing baths, antibiotics  and steroids dont work, then its time to keep looking.

Testing for dander dog allergies

Like tests for humans and dogs to environment allergies,  A vet will often use a RAST test. (radioallergosorbent).  This is where the allergen is dropped into a suspended liquid and a matrix of these drops are put on a bare patch of the dogs skin to look for a reaction.

Swelling and redness are a sure ‘tell tale’ sign that the dog has an issue with the allergen.  As long as DANDER is part of the matrix test, it is likely to come up positive if your dog is allergic to dander.


It might seem crazy that your dog can be allergic to you, when media reports it the other way around, that humans are often allergic to dog and cat fur or hair.  But in rare cases dogs can be allergic to us, and have just as severe a reaction to our DANDER as we can to their hair.


Like many allergy reactions, avoidance is better than a cure (that usually cant happen).  All you usually are doing is looking at suppressing the over reactive dog allergy mechanism (that creates the histamines that cause the swelling in the first place.

Just like human allergy treatments, a vet may attempt to administer over several months of visits, an immunotherapy formula (allergy shots) that has the proteins from human dander. The success rate of this is often under 50%  and you may need to do it again in a few years even if successful.

the other option is to also use an anti-inflammatory diet and supplements that are anti inflammatory like some herbs.  The idea here is that you reduce the load on the dogs immune system, then even if they react to the dander, it will be a reduced reaction.

Good luck !