Are British Shorthair Cats Hypoallergenic? Is It Possible?

If you’re looking for a feline that’s smart, loyal, playful, and affectionate to its pet parents, the British Shorthair is an excellent choice to give a forever home. However, many people make the mistake of thinking that these cats are hypoallergenic because of their plush, dense coats.

That’s not true; British shorthair cats are not hypoallergenic. However, no breed is hypoallergenic, much as we would love for one to be. Some cats shed less than others and contain less of the Fel-D1 protein in their salvias, but no cat is entirely safe to be around if you have severe cat allergies. In this article, we’ll discuss British shorthair cats, hypoallergenic cats, and more, so stay tuned.


Are Any Cat Breeds Completely Hypoallergenic?

No, there are no completely hypoallergenic breeds. This is because every cat secretes the Fel-D1 protein in their saliva, which causes allergic reactions. When your cat cleans itself, it gets the protein embedded in its fur, which sheds and spreads throughout your house. If you’re allergic to the protein, you’ll likely have a reaction when sharing a home with a cat.

However, hope isn’t lost. Some breeds are better for allergy sufferers than others. We’ll list a few of them in our next section.

Which Cat Breeds Are Best for Allergy Sufferers?

Although these cats are not hypoallergenic, they’re less likely to cause a reaction in allergy sufferers.

  • Sphynx
  • Cornish Rex
  • Oriental
  • Russian Blue
  • Devon Rex
  • Siberian
  • Balinese
  • Bengal

Any of these cats will make better companions for allergy sufferers than the British shorthair. The British shorthair isn’t ideal for allergy sufferers because of its short, dense fur. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t have one. We’ll give you a few tips for living with allergies and your British shorthair next.

Tips for Having a British Shorthair when You Have Allergies

British Shorthair Cat
Image Credit: Blue-Heaven, Pixabay

If you’re intent on giving a British shorthair a forever home, even though you have allergies, following the tips below might help you to cope.

Modify Your Interior

You can minimize the allergens by prohibiting a cat from entering your bedroom or other areas you spend a lot of time in. Also, you can use air purifiers around your home to reduce the allergens in the air and prevent frequent reactions to dander. Using HEPA filters on your HVAC system can also make the air cleaner in your home.

Develop Good, Healthy Habits

There are a few good habits that you can develop to help you deal with your allergies so that you can keep your British shorthair cat.

  • Don’t allow your cat to sleep with you
  • Wash your hands after petting your cat
  • Don’t allow your cat to go outside
  • Vacuum, sweep, and mop regularly
  • Don’t allow your cat to get on your couch, bed, or anywhere close to your face

These habits might not completely relieve your allergies, but they will help quite a bit, especially in making your bedroom a no-cat zone.

Groom Frequently

a person brushing the hair of a british shorthair cat
Image Credit: marketlan, Shutterstock

Grooming your cat regularly can cut down on allergy symptoms dramatically. If you can, brush your cat once or twice weekly to remove excess fur and dander. However, if you react to the cat while grooming, have someone else in your home brush it or make an appointment with a professional groomer.

See Your Doctor for Medication

Sometimes, the best thing you can do is see your doctor to see if they’ll prescribe allergy medicine. However, there are over-the-counter products that may also help. If the medication does not help, you can try allergen-specific immunotherapy (ASIT) to treat your condition. These allergy shots build up your tolerance to the Fel-D1 protein, but the process can take several months or longer.


Signs to Watch for with Cat Allergies

A few signs to watch out for may indicate you’re allergic to cats:

  • Coughing, sneezing, and wheezing
  • Watery, itchy eyes
  • Sore, tickly throat
  • Your face feels swollen and painful
  • Shortness of breath
  • A redness on your skin
  • You have an asthma attack

If you see any of these signs and symptoms after you get a cat, it’s best to talk to your doctor for diagnosis and possible treatment. If none of the above remedies and tips work, you might have to rehome your cat, as much as you hate to, for your health.



So to wrap it up, British shorthair cats are not hypoallergenic. They aren’t the best cats to have if you have a cat allergy. However, with the tips above, you might be able to get by with having a British shorthair cat in your household. These cats are calm, affectionate, and loving. No cat is considered fully hypoallergenic, but a few, such as the Cornish Rex, Devon Rex, and the Russian Blue, are less likely to cause an allergic reaction.

Featured Image Credit: Real Moment, Shutterstock

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