Tuesday, April 14, 2009


A 27 word Andrew Bolt post on Obama's new dog draws a 188 word response from cat lover Jeremy, who uses the President's daughter's allergy problem as justification for breaking a "campaign promise":
Those Americans who voted for the Democrat candidate on the basis of his apparently firm and well-publicised (but oddly unquotable) “campaign promise” to adopt a dog directly from a shelter (notwithstanding his daughter’s allergies and Obama’s sensible desire to avoid the difficulties which could therefore arise were they to adopt a mongrel of uncertain heritage) should be entitled to take their votes BACK. A broken “campaign promise” is a broken “campaign promise” and Andy is right to hold the new President to account.
Just ignore that Bolt never mentioned Obama's "campaign promise" to source the family dog from a "shelter". Humans allergic to dogs aren't allergic to dog hair, they're allergic to skin oils and skin cells sloughed off by the dog. There is no guarantee a low-shedding dog of any breed is not going to cause allergy problems.

I know this from experience as a an owner of many different Rhodesian Ridgebacks. Ridgebacks are, like Portuguese water dogs, low shedding dogs but can, in my experience, cause huge allergy problems.

My wife is not known to be allergic to dogs. She is, however, unable to touch our Ridgeback without risking a reasonably severe reaction: touching the dog causing her to develop urticaria, that is, hives, and asthma. She has no problem being around the dog 24/7 but is at risk when she pets him. Other people petting my various Ridgebacks have experienced similar problems. This probably has something to do with Ridgebacks having rather oily coats.

Regardless, there's no way Obama could turn down a dog from Edward Kennedy, allergies or no. Spending time with a dog, pedigreed or mongrel, is the only way to know if the mutt causes allergy problems. Another fail for Jeremy.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hope you've got a BIG chart on your wall detailing all of jeremy's failures. It could make a great cover for a Christmas card or similar. I'd consider buying 50 or so of 'Jeremy's failure chart Christmas cards'. But with all his ego driven stuff ups you may need more than one chart. Mehaul.

7:57 PM  
Anonymous ar said...

I always thought low-shedding dogs like poodles and their crosses were suitable for blind or old people who couldn't clean up their hair, not for allergy sufferers...

But kids' allergies are great - they can be used to excuse anything from a bludge day off work to sending a mutt to be put down. There's no comeback to "my kid's allergic"...

12:17 PM  
Anonymous Legal Eagle said...

People who are allergic to cats are allergic to a protein present in the saliva of cats, which gets all over their skin and hair when they groom themselves. I'm very very allergic to cats. Consequently, even if I got a low-shedding cat or one of those freaky furless ones, I'd still be allergic to it.

I'm a little allergic to dogs too, as is my daughter. However, my daughter is still trying to persuade me that we should get a dog regardless... I guess we'll just have to wait and see the breeds to which we're allergic. I actually never had a problem with Rhodesian Ridgebacks before - always thought they have lovely fur, like velvet. For some reason, my daughter and I are allergic to my best friend's Miniature Schnauzer, which is such a pity, because he's a lovely dog and an ideal dog to have around kids.

5:15 PM  
Anonymous Tim Newman said...

I love ridgebacks! Great to know you own one. Does it bite lefties on command, or of its own accord?

1:22 PM  

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