Study Examines Links Between Pets and Respiratory Illness

In the October 2018 edition of the Brazilian Journal of Medical and Biological Research an article investigates “the prevalence of asthma and lung function status among dog and cat owners.” Subjects were divided into groups of cat owners, dog owners and people with no pets. “Subjects underwent spirometry, bronchial challenge test with mannitol, skin prick tests, and questionnaires about animal exposures and respiratory symptoms.” The researchers found that “cat owners had increased asthma prevalence” while no changes in lung function and dog owners “had lower spirometry values… but similar asthma prevalence, compared to the control group.” The researchers hypothesized “in the cat owner group, excess of asthma may have an immunological basis,” while “low values of lung function” may be “associated to exposure to endotoxins present in environments exposed to dogs.”

To view the article’s abstract, click here.