The Best Hypoallergenic Pets

If a Neopet is the closest you can get to taking care of an actual pet, then we have some companions for you.

Maybe you're not ready to be a pet owner. Or maybe your eyes get red and you start sneezing every time you're near a cat. We have solutions! From robots, to apps, to plants and rocks, here are our favorite alternatives to traditional furry friends.

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The Botanical Pet

This classic pet alternative has been around since the 1980s. Have the satisfaction of caring for something living without the responsibility or allergens of an animal. The chia seeds you plant in the terracotta animal sprout and become your pet's "fur."

Chia Pet Kitten, $18, drugstore.com

The Cat Collection

This addictive app is quite simple: lure digital cats to your yard with food, toys, and furniture. When they are done playing or relaxing, the cats in turn leave you silver and gold fish, which are the game's currency. With the fish you can buy more cat-luring supplies and even remodel your home to attract the game's rarer cats. Proceed with caution—this game will become your new obsession.

Neko Atsume app, free on Android or iOS
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The Throwback to 2005

The complete virtual pet experience, this Nintendo DS game allows the user to play with their dog, train their dog, walk their dog, and interact with other users' dogs. Get the full pet experience with this game—just don't forget to feed your dog!

Nintendog French Bulldog, $20, gamestop.com

The Reinvented Classic

A notorious phenomenon of the 1990s, the Furby is still around and evolving with new technology. The revamped Furby Connect has LCD screen eyes and reacts with 1,000 different animations and phrases to sound and touch cues. Furby Connect also interacts with an Android and iOS app. Luckily, these pets come with eye masks, so you can prevent them from watching you sleep.

Furby Connect, $100 hasbro.com
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The Original Wearable Tech

Tamagotchi nostalgia is strong, as evidenced by Orlando Bloom and Katy Perry's decision to wear a matching pair of Tamagotchis to this year's Met Gala. The Tamagotchi game is now available as an app, but we prefer it in egg-form.

Tamagotchi Friends Digital Friend, $16, hottopic.com

The Ultimate Low-Maintenance Pet

Re-vamped with new technology, this 1970s classic still does...nothing. The pet rock may come with a USB cord now, but don't expect anything to happen when you plug it in. It's a rock.

USB Pet Rock, $8 thinkgeek.com
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The Therapeutic Pet Experience

Recently made famous in the U.S. thanks to an episode of Aziz Ansari's Netflix series Master of None, this Japanese therapeutic robot seal is exceptionally loveable. PARO may look like your average cuddly stuffed animal, but it's actually able to provide some of the same benefits to patients as animal therapy. Sensors allow PARO to distinguish gentle from rough touches, and discern different tones of voice. Distribution of PARO is limited, so sadly even if you're ready to shell out for this little seal, you may not be able to acquire it. We're hoping for a future where expensive therapy robot seals are available to make everyone's day better.

PARO Therapeutic Robot Seal, $5,000 parorobots.com
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