I have never owned pets, because I have always been allergic to them.
Apparently when I first came home from the hospital as a baby my parents had to get rid of their pets because it made me cough and sneeze.
That never changed, and it’s such a strong allergy that even spending a few minutes in the presence of a cat will make my face start to itch. I take allergy meds, of course, but I still can’t be around animals for very long. A few weeks ago I started to have regular allergy attacks, and couldn’t figure out why. After doing a deep clean of the house, and overdosing on allergy meds, I finally called an HVAC expert to come and test the air quality of my home. I expected a big, burly HVAC tech like always, but instead was visited by a short, petite woman who looked like a librarian. She was an expert on testing air quality, and that is all she did. I must say the lady was excellent at her job, and she did a deep-dive inspection of my entire ventilation system. She even removed the air vents to peer inside, and then went up into the attic to check my insulation. That is where she found the cul;prit to my questionable air quality – there was a litter kitten up in the attic, swaddled in shredded insulation! At some point in the last few weeks a stray cat had gotten into the attic to have babies, and now their dander and hair was spreading through the air ducts and making me feel sick.