Dyson Global Dust Study 2022: Over 50% of Indian pet owners believe that bacteria reside on their pets at home

India’s pet care market is growing rapidly, with nearly one in every six Indians now having a pet, with dogs being the most common. But with pets come the pet hair, dander and skin flakes and challenges with cleaning it. Dyson Global Dust Study 2022 investigates cleaning habits and behaviours and delves into the understanding of household dust and the potential impact it can have on our well-being.

Every pet parent understands the challenges of keeping a clean home for the well-being of every family member as well as the overall environment of the home healthy. However, the Dyson Global Dust Study 2022 states that pet owners are often unaware of the hidden impacts of their furry friends. By investigating their cleaning habits, it was revealed that 21% of Indians were unaware that pet allergens that trigger pet-related allergies could be found in household dust.

There’s more to your pet coat than meets the eye

  • 16% of pet owners were unaware that components such as pet dander (e.g., hair, skin flakes) make up dust
  • 3 in 4 pet owners are unaware that pollen can reside on their pets
  • 7 in 10 pet owners are unaware that viruses and house dust mite faeces can reside on their pets
  • 1 in 2 pet owners are unaware that bacteria and skin flakes can reside on their pets

Monika Stuczen, Research Scientist in Microbiology at Dyson, says, “Many people think that pet hair is the biggest problem as it is the most visible. It is unsurprising that people are unaware of the other particles that may reside on their pets because these particles tend to be microscopic in size”.

People often think that pet hair triggers allergies. However, allergies are triggered by allergens that can also be found in pet dander.

But what is pet dander?

  • Pet dander is composed of tiny, microscopic flecks of skin shed by cats, dogs, rodents, birds and other animals with fur or feathers.
  • When pets groom themselves, they deposit minute allergy-causing protein particles on their hair and skin.
  • Because of their microscopic size and jagged shape, they can easily stick to furniture, bedding, fabrics, and items carried in and out of the home.

According to the Dyson Global Dust Study 2022, in India, 32% of pet owners allow their pets to sleep on their beds; their awareness of what may reside on their pets is low, which is a concern. Moreover, only 36% of Indians include pet baskets in their general cleaning routine, of which only 10% use vacuum cleaners to clean their pet baskets.

Regular vacuuming only reduces the amount of pet hair they shed around the home, but microscopic particles remain on their pets that can potentially be spread around the home. If you have a pet, consider what they bring in when they come in and where they shed in your home. It’s also important to remember that short-haired or hairless animals contribute dander and allergens to indoor air pollution just as effectively as long-haired animals.

“It is a cause for concern if people only clean when they spot visible dust on the floors as many dust particles are microscopic in size,” says Monika. “In fact, by the time people spot visible dust in the home, it is highly likely that there are dust mites in your home.”

Grooming Matters

The Dyson Global Dust Study 2022 says that 38% of pet owners groom their pets at home every day, and 75% groom them with a brush or comb, leaving the pet dander behind and causing several health issues. Dyson, being the leader in pet science, recently launched its new “Pet Groom Tool” for mess-free grooming. Engineered to provide respite to the challenges around pet hair, the new revolutionary tool allows pet parents to brush loose hair off their pets and directly into the Dyson cord-free vacuum cleaners.

It is a true game changer for Indian pet owners and is specifically suitable for dogs and cats with medium and long hair. Both species shed a lot of hair depending on the season and breed, so instead of constantly vacuuming your home and removing all the falling hair, the Dyson Pet groom tool is a useful accessory that allows you to address the issue at its root.

Are people cleaning the right spaces in their homes – with the right methods?

Year-on-year, we see positive shifts in people’s cleaning habits. When cleaning their homes, more people are vacuuming some of the commonly overlooked spaces, including their mattresses and sofas. At Dyson, our research shows us that the best way to tackle dust allergens is to remove it from home completely.

“Using a wet cloth to clean surfaces is fine, but the sequence of cleaning tools matters. Dampening dust on floors – even fine dust invisible to the naked eye – could mean that you’re creating a habitat more favourable to dust mite and mould proliferation,” explains Monika.

Therefore, at Dyson, we’ve spent almost 20 years studying real dust – only by understanding the complex matrix of household dust can we better enable our vacuum cleaners to deal with the conditions they face in real homes. Our engineers spend a lot of time developing our filters and seals to ensure that we capture the dust you can see and the dust you can’t. We want to ensure that what has been sucked up remains trapped in the bin and is not expelled back into your home – helping keep your home clean and hygienic.

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