If you’re allergic to cats, scientists have developed a hypoallergenic breed that won’t trigger allergies in humans.
According to the London Daily Mail, a genetic engineering firm has created the cat in response to thousands of inquiries from feline lovers all over the world. But animal welfare groups are against the idea - they say that the designer pet could be prone to serious health risks.
About 1 in 10 people are allergic to cats, which is caused by a protein in the cat’s skin and saliva. And the reaction can be especially severe in people who have asthma.
But scientists at the San Diego firm Allerca studied the genes of cats - and located the ones that didn’t cause an allergic response in humans. Then they bred the cats over several generations to produce allergy-free offspring.
You can buy a hypoallergenic cat online for about $15-thousand dollars, plus a processing fee and delivery charge. But even if you can afford the steep price, there’s a two-year waiting list.
The company’s website describes the kitties as “friendly, playful, and affectionate.” And they say they have a long life expectancy.
But here’s something to think about, too: the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals warns that genetic modification and selective breeding can produce health defects that might not show up until years down the line. And even in a hypoallergenic cat, the allergens are just reduced - not removed completely.