By Lara Evans Bracciante
Originally published in Massage & Bodywork magazine, February/March 2003.
Babies born into a household with pets may have a decreased risk of suffering from allergies down the road, according to research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The study evaluated the pet population in the suburban Detroit homes of 474 infants. Six to seven years later, the same children were tested for common allergens such as dust mites, dog, cat, ragweed and blue grass. The results of skin prick tests revealed 33.6 percent of children who had no dogs or cats in their first year of life tested positive to allergens; 34.4 percent who had one dog or cat also tested positive; but only 15.4 percent with exposure to two or more dogs or cats in their first year of life tested positive.