October 11, 2019 at 10:44 am #13790Jenny LivingstonKeymaster
Something I find very interesting is the difference in opinion regarding pets and CF. There are certain well-known risks (for instance, birds are considered a huge “no-no”) but the potential risks involved in owning a variety of other pets are still up for debate.
One study found that, for people with CF, cat ownership was associated with an increased risk of developing nasal polyps. When analysis combined dogs and cats, pet owners were twice as likely to report wheezing compared to non-dog/cat owners. Those who exclusively owned dogs did not show an increase in symptoms.
I know many people (either adults with CF or parents of a child with CF) who choose not to have pets because of the potential risk of infectious or allergic issues. But on the flip side, I also know many who choose to have pets and have had no problems.
Personally, I’ve always had pets. I grew up riding horses, milking goats, feeding chickens, and being surrounded by dogs. Today, I own many pets including two dogs, a horse, some bunnies, and (until very recently) a hedgehog. Having animals in my life has always been something that brings me joy! The emotional benefit of having pets has been very positive, and pet ownership required a large amount of responsibility from a very early age which I consider a good thing.
I think a risk-benefit analysis is key when it comes to CF and pet ownership. For some, the risk may be too high while, for others, pets will always be part of their lives.
I’m curious, do you own pets? What risks/benefits do you think there are regarding pet ownership and CF?
October 15, 2019 at 10:27 am #13802Paul met DebbieParticipant
Pets have been and still are important in my life. I never thought about risks/benefits (I should, but just didn’t). But in general the hairs and skins of pets might trigger some airway inflammation as a risk. And a benefit of having a dog in the house (besides having a noble creature around that thinks of me as God), is that it triggers my walking activities which is good for my lungs.
Cats are also noble, but they think they are God themselves (which is true) and they prefer to go out on their own, so no extra fitness benefits there (unless you chaise them which is silly).
Currently my wife Debbie and I enjoy the divine company of our little labradoodle dog called Buddha. Wouldn’t miss her for the world. She is an Australian Labradoodle, which means that she is anti-allergic (her coat that is), does not loose any hairs and therefore is eligible for 5 professional haircuts per year and sleeping on the bed with us every night (and she makes use of this privilege!).
Having nature in your house, in the form of pets or plants, is a great way of staying close to your source, which is benificial to your health in general. If you take care of the normal and well known rules of hygiene, I think it can go together with cf very well, with some exceptions your doctor can advise you about or experience will teach you. If you can’t have pets or plants, don’t despair – just enjoy the nature in yourself, it’s in every breath you take. And remember: you are a nude ape yourself (be proud of your pedigree!).
May grace be with you.
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