Here, kitty kitty
I am waiting for a hypoallergenic cat. Not one to keep, but just one to prove all the skeptics wrong. In the January issue of the The Scientist I wrote an linkurl:article;http://www.the-scientist.com/article/display/39383/ about what scientists think of Allerca's hypoallergenic cats. The California company claims to have found and bred the world's first scientifically proven hypoallergenic cat, but most of the scientists I spoke with are dubious of its claims, not to mention the founder has a bi
I am waiting for a hypoallergenic cat. Not one to keep, but just one to prove all the skeptics wrong. In the January issue of the The Scientist I wrote an linkurl:article;http://www.the-scientist.com/article/display/39383/ about what scientists think of Allerca's hypoallergenic cats. The California company claims to have found and bred the world's first scientifically proven hypoallergenic cat, but most of the scientists I spoke with are dubious of its claims, not to mention the founder has a bit of a criminal past and Allerca continues to find itself in linkurl:trouble.;http://www.bizben.com/blog/posts/223-california-franchises-make-list.php/
The company promised to deliver the first batch of kitties this spring--and with the equinox approaching I emailed the press office to catch up on Allerca's progress. It's been a day and no one has responded, and I have yet to find any news reports of these $4,000 cats making it to their new homes. Yet the company's linkurl:website;http://www.allerca.com/ states that 'Customers who now own GD cats report that they make great family pets and are wonderful with children.'
A few other sections of the website caught my eye as I was checking for updates. For one, the nonsense linkurl:data;http://www.the-scientist.com/article/display/39381/ Allerca had posted--and which received criticism in my article--are no longer there, and the description of Allerca's screening technology has been modified. Also, though Allerca is only into the third generation of hypoallergenic cats, now just a few years old, the company claims they 'have a long life expectancy.' How do they know?
It would be great to prove the skepticism of those in my article wrong. Cat allergies affect millions and many of those people would love to be pet owners; it's no surprise Time and Good Morning America praised Allerca for its work. Several months back I interviewed Allerca's founder Simon Brodie and he said the proof will be in the pets. So again I invite Allerca, as I did several months ago, to show us the proof.
December 11, 2007
After a year of not hearing anything, I contacted Allerca and much to my delight got a prompt return call, promising me testing materials in late November and a kitty on January 18th. \n\nThe problem? No testing kit arrived and e-mails and phone calls have gone unanswered. \n\nYou might ask why someone who's intelligent and highly educated would invest in an unproven company. I guess heart trumps mind for hundreds of desperate cat lovers. \n\nPeople, if you're considering Allerca, please wait. Like you, I wanted a cat more than anything in the world and worked overtime for two years to pay for it. \n\nIf the cat comes and it's truly hypoallergenic, I'll be the first one singing Allerca's praises. But right now I'm out of money, out of kitties, and out of hope.
January 28, 2008
Just wanted to follow up. As many of you know, Allerca cancelled my order in response to my last post. It took three weeks, but I did get the money back. After the initial heartbreak, I've been trying to move on and find a cat that might work for me. \n\nI've been researching Siberians and have found one particularly delightful breeder. Her name is Lori and her cattery is based in New York, though she's in the process of moving west. Here's the website. \n\nhttp://www.siberiancatsnewyork.com/\n\nLori sent me test packets of cat fur in special pouches with specific instructions on how to use them. She then recommended good breeders on my end of the country and is always there to answer questions about Siberians or about the reputation of other breeders. \n\nAlso, her cats' FelD1 levels are unusually low. Her kittens usually fall between a 2.3-4.7.\n\nI'm sure there are other good breeders out there, but Lori has been outstanding in responding to my e-mails and in following through with advice. This is someone who's serious both about allergic levels and about her cats and obviously thinks about what's best for her customers without high-pressure sales tactics.\n\nSomething else to look at is Felixpets, run by David Avner. He's actually genetically modifying cats to eliminate the FelD1 protein, and you can get on a waiting list.\n\nHope this helps some other people who are still longing for cats of their own.