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While we all know that many people around the world suffer from severe allergies that require them to monitor every aspect of their lives very carefully, from what they eat to what they wear, what we don’t often consider is how such people suffer emotionally and psychologically. The fact is that people with severe allergies often have three battles to fight on a daily basis: Avoiding contact with the things that spark allergic reactions in them, dealing with unsympathetic people in social situations, and dealing with the onrush of disbelief and scorn from total strangers.
The problem stems from success. People with severe, life-threatening allergies learn from a young age how to avoid the things that are dangerous to themselves. As a result, they can appear to be unaffected, to be perfectly normal. This makes others suspicious that they might simply be “drama queens” or are seeking attention. This makes it easy to mock them when they order nothing but salad at dinner because they cannot determine if the restaurant can handle their dietary requirements, and it can lead to false resentment among peers for perceived undeserved “special treatment.”
The stress and anxiety produced by this sort of experience can be crippling in itself, and many people suffering from severe allergies end up in some form of therapy to deal with the emotional issues of living every day not only in fear of death but fear of being ostracised by their peers. Normally a wonderful therapy for people suffering from anxiety of all kinds is animal therapy: Many people suffering from PTSD or other severe anxiety syndromes report incredible reduction of stress and other symptoms just from contact with an animal, especially dogs. The unspoiled affection and loyalty of a dog is a healing experience.
Unfortunately for those whose anxieties stem from allergies, most dogs, even dogs that are described as hypo-allergenic, trigger their immune systems. The animals they love and who could help to calm and heal them make their suffering worse, and so most have to forego the loving companionship of a good dog.
Unless the dog is an Australian Labradoodle. Long renowned for being low-shed, low-dander, and hypo-allergenic themselves, they are increasingly found to be the one dog that anyone, no matter how severe their allergies are, can handle. People who have attacks triggered by almost every other breed have reported success with these adorable and very trainable dogs, meaning that a group of people lacking dogness in their lives now have an option.
Owning a dog not only provides companionship, but training a dog has been shown to be emotionally and mentally beneficial to both the dog and the owner. Training has been demonstrated to give a dog a sense of permanence and routine it finds comforting, and the owners often find themselves distracted from their own troubles for the first time in years.
So if you know anyone suffering from either anxiety or allergies or both, consider exposing them to a Labradoodle to see if they have a physical reaction. There’s no question about an emotional reaction!
If you would like to find out more facts about Australian Labradoodles, check out our About Labradoodles section.